Date: July 3, 1930
Location: Northampton, MA
For 154 years July 4 has been called Independence Day. Since 1776 we have been politically an independent nation. But we do not need to emphasize our independence any more than we need to emphasize our selfishness. We are in no danger of failing to provide a very complete supply of both of them. Our greatness will not be in that direction, but in a more adequate recognition of our dependence. That is what the development of civilization seems to mean-division of labor, co-operation, mutual kindliness and helpfulness. On the economic, social and moral side of life we are all dependent. We do not produce enough calories to feed our population. We grow in grace through intercourse with our fellow men. We build our character largely by meeting our obligations to others. We all live in the same world. We are bound to a common destiny through a common brotherhood. The path to glory does not lie in a sordid individualism, a perverted independence, or a narrow nationalism. It lies toward the Golden Rule. The independence which the Fathers won by declaring their reliance on Providence and pledging their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor, not to themselves but to each other, we cannot keep on any inferior commitment.
Citation: Calvin Coolidge Says: Dispatches Written by Former-President Coolidge and Syndicated to Newspapers in 1930-1931 (Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation)
The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of Robert Manchester who prepared this document for digital publication.