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The meaning of America, this Fourth of July

Published: Thursday, July 3, 2014 1:15 a.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014 8:18 a.m. CDT

My brother, Adam Devine, is who I see when I think of America. The sacrifices he, and many other men and women who have served in the military, made to keep not only his family safe, but his country safe. He fought against terrorism on foreign soil, leaving behind his beloved wife, child and family, so we American citizens did not have to fight on our own soil against terrorism.

Without those brave men and women willing to give up everything to serve their country, there would, possibly, be no window of opportunity for the young and older generation.

Opportunity. Opportunity is a door to what you want, what you strive to do in life. What you want to be in life. Whether it is to become famous, like a movie star or a famous singer, it doesn't matter here in America, but it takes hard work and determination.

Determination. We Americans were determined to break free of British rule in the late 1700s. With that determination, we gained independence and freedom. America is filled with determination. We do not give up.

Freedom gives us the right to express ourselves. Without this freedom, what is America? Without America, what is freedom? Freedom and America are perfectly balanced. Do you know why we have the eagle as our national bird? Because an eagle is strong and free. This nation is strong and free.

Lastly, America is a home to me, my friends, family, and millions of people. I don't think of America as just some land mass. I think of it as a huge shelter that holds within itself a huge family of brothers and sisters. Through pain, sorrow and sadness, we will fight and stick together to keep our home safe.

This is the meaning of America to me.

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