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What Should Social Media Mean To Us On This Fourth Of July

US FlagFreedom. It’s the single principle that the United States of America was founded on. Freedom from tyranny, freedom from being told what we can and can’t do, freedom to choose our pursue life, liberty and happiness. A few things were missing, though, when the original framers penned the constitution, the most important of which have been added over the years.

For social media advocates, though, the additional of the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution should have a special place in their heart. This amendment specifically limits our governments’ ability to restrict our choice of religion, ability to speak freely, and gather (peacefully) where we want.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

So, then, what made social media possible in our country? Facebook? Twitter? YouTube? Nope…it’s was our ancestors. People. People who understood that, together, they could accomplish great things when given the opportunity and left to their own devices without a lot of government restriction. People who understood that creating and sharing information was a fundamental principle to the future success of our country.

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As you tweet and post, today, remember to say a quick word of thanks to those who risked their lives to secure our freedom and our right to share our thoughts, express our feelings, and congregate offline and online. While the framers of the original constitution or the Bill of Rights may not have considered the Internet or social media sites of today, their foresight and vision ensure that the fundamental principles of their words still apply today.

Happy Fourth of July to each and every one of you…and happy tweeting and posting.



Greg Lahann

Friday 22nd of July 2011

Nice post, Sean.

If you had told John Adams, Ben Franklin, or James Madison that one day people would be able to instantly post their thoughts and ideas to anyone around the world, they would have been flabbergasted. And if you had told Thomas Jefferson that he could find almost any answer with the click of a mouse, he would have been astounded. (Of course, you'd have to explain that it's not that type of mouse first.)

The free exchange of ideas is one of the things that makes this country great.