The photo you see is a group of daisies on the side of my backyard.  They are getting ready to celebrate Independence Day. While we traditionally wave Old Glory on this day, I want to wave wild daisies.

Notice how they are all standing tall and proud—an appropriate gesture for all who live in the land of the free and the home of the brave. Their mere existence attests to their bravery and diligence to outlast pests, arduous weather, and the string on the weed eater of the man who mows the yard. Likewise, our country’s hard-earned freedom over 245 years has metaphorically stood tall against similar challenges.

Like sunflowers, the daises exhibit the phenomenon of heliotropism, where flowers follow the position of the sun in the sky. It is likewise a feature of the U.S., with its capacity to adapt and adjust to the people’s will. From civil rights to states’ rights to views on everything from abortion to voting, the malleability of the foundation of our country reflects its “of the people, by the people, for the people” philosophy.

The daisy (from the phrase “day’s eye”) boasts the simplicity and purity of snow-white pedals with an elegant, pronounced yellow-gold center. Daisies are multifaceted. They can be eaten, used for medicinal purposes, and form the basis of daisy chains, often a part of children’s play. No country in the world so perfectly combines the joys of free expression, the seriousness of armed defense, and the generosity of global human caretaking.

As you enjoy breath-taking fireworks, listen to the Star-Spangled Banner, and grill a hamburger or hot dog, think on the elegant daisy. They can be your inspiration for remembering why we celebrate this special day.