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Congressman Rob Bishop

Representing the 1st District of Utah

Bishops speech brings audience to their feet

July 7, 2011

Standard Examiner

By Ruth Malan

KAYSVILLE — On Sunday evening, U.S. Representative Rob Bishop was back at his high school alma mater as the featured speaker for the annual Independence Day Devotional at Davis High.

Bishop explained that times had to be right and that either coincidences happened or there was a higher power paving the way for the coming forth of the Declaration of Independence.

Last week, Bishop was in Germany, in the town where Martin Luther was able to bring about the reformation.

"History would have been changed if that had not happened," Bishop said.

And history would have been changed if a series of events had not happened to bring forth the writing and signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, he said.

"There were circumstances that had to be in line," said Bishop.

It had to happen in 1776, it could not have happened in 1676 or 1876, he explained.

"It was almost as if there was some kind of plan," Bishop said. "There were unique personalities that only came together at one time, during conservative times."

He said that often people go to war or fight for "stuff," but these early settlers in the original 13 colonies already had "stuff." They were fighting for ideas that could only gel at that time. They were fighting for freedom of religion. And they wanted freedom for everybody not just the rich.

It was a time the founders did not want taxes without representation but they wanted taxes with representation.

"It was not about money, it was about ideas and rights of property," said Bishop, a former high school history teacher.

Bishop quoted Abraham Lincoln on the Declaration of Independence: "It is abstract truth applicable to all men at all times."

Congress has to meet at least one time a year in the Capitol. And qualifications to be a senator or a member of the House of Representatives are minimal because all people should be eligible to be part of government.

"Liberty is an essential element. ... Liberty means choice, opportunity," Bishop said. "It's all about personal choice. Limitation is tyrannical."

Government should facilitate options for the people. That is what the founding fathers were trying to say, that is the goal, he said.

Bishop called the United States of America "the most generous, most charitable country and the most hated by most evil forces."

"This is your country. You have the ability to be a hero, the ability to write the next chapter in history," Bishop said. "You are here today because you care. Americans responded and we built a better world."

Those in the filled auditorium gave Bishop a standing ovation.

The Davis Master Chorale, Scout Troop 592, the Davis High School Drum Line and Meghan Parrish, who sang the National Anthem, were all part of the program, where veterans were honored and Unsung Heroes Betty Brand, of Fruit Heights, and Jeff Dunford, of Kaysville, were honored.