Remarks from Ambassador Laura F. Dogu on the 246th Anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America

Welcome to our Fourth of July celebration.

This year, we commemorate the 246th anniversary of the independence of the United States of America.

I arrived in this beautiful country only three months ago, and in this short time I have learned and experienced many things in Honduras.

Thanks to everyone who has recommended places to visit and activities to do.

I have plans to travel a lot.

I look forward to meeting many of you in person in the near future.

It is a privilege to reciprocate your hospitality and share with you some reflections on this important holiday.

Every Fourth of July, we gather with our families and friends to commemorate the anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.

As we celebrate with good food and fireworks, we never forget the importance of the day.

That moment marked the beginning of our great nation.

This transcendental document determined that we all have individual rights, some of the main ones being: “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness”.

Our Constitution is based on the Declaration of Independence.

It highlights our efforts to build a better nation.

Our job to build a better country is easier at some times in our history than at others.

But it goes on every day.

We must remember the struggles we as a nation have overcome along the way.

The founders of our country recognized that the Constitution would have to gradually adapt to the times but not be susceptible to fleeting political winds.

The Constitution has been changed only 27 times, and each time with consideration and consultation.

That was the case when we abolished slavery, extended the right to vote, or established presidential term limits.

Our Constitution and our belief in the rule of law have provided a stable foundation for our country to grow and flourish.
Many civil society organizations rose up to force our country to be better.

My grandmother was a Member of the League of Women Voters.

Thanks to her efforts, women can not only vote, but also represent the United States abroad.

They can even hold the highest positions like Vice President Kamala Harris.

We owe a lot of gratitude to the organizations that fought for civil rights, including marriage equality and the end of segregation.

Our Constitution provides essential protections for these movements: be it freedom of association, freedom of the press or freedom of expression.

Finally, the Declaration of Independence stipulates that government must benefit every member of our diverse society.

The Constitution accomplishes this by establishing three branches of government.

We have seen this over and over again.

Moments when an independent judicial decision ruled on a contentious election as in the year 2000 in the election between George W. Bush and Al Gore; or when Congress has investigated and supervised – including the approval of ambassadors appointed by the president.

We are grateful for a system of checks and balances that prevents the abuse of power.

I believe that our two peoples share these same aspirations and principles.

I want to reaffirm the Embassy’s commitment to work with all of you to build a better world.

Where everyone can fully enjoy their rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

We will defend pluralism by supporting activists fighting for the freedoms and rights of indigenous peoples and sexual and gender minorities.

We will protect the environment by working with the Honduran government to overcome natural disasters and prevent the adverse effects of climate change in the future.

We will uphold freedom, equality, and the rule of law by providing training and equipment so law enforcement can maintain safety and the rule of law for all.

We will protect life by providing vaccines against COVID-19 so that everyone can safely participate in society.

We will foster prosperity and the pursuit of happiness by working to create economic opportunity for all Hondurans.

Therefore, today we not only celebrate the independence of the United States.

We celebrate our rich diversity and how we all strive to come together to build a society that protects and serves all.

We also celebrate the important achievements that we have achieved through the strong friendship of our two peoples.

To the Americans who live in Honduras, to the more than a million Hondurans who live in the United States, to the many with dual citizenship, I wish you a Happy Independence Day.

Again, thank you so much for joining us today.