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Being Free

This last week has been an important week for many different countries around the world. In my country of Canada, we had Canada Day on July 1st. In Canada we celebrate that we are a free country from the world. We do not belong to France or England or America. Canada is its own free country. America has July 4th. It is their Independence Day. They celebrate that they are free from England. Independence Day is also celebrated in Venezuela, Armenia, and Algeria.

The first week of July is a time when many countries celebrate that they are free.

Freedom is a wonderful thing. We have freedom here in Japan. We have freedom in Canada. We have freedom in many countries around the world. It takes a long time for a country to become free, and it takes a lot of fighting to break from other countries and be alone. To get freedom is very hard, and many people die when a country is moving to become free.

I am thinking about the students here at Otemae. Do you feel free? Maybe no… Maybe you feel a lot of pressure from tests. Maybe you feel that you are not free. Maybe you feel that your mother and father and teachers are all pushing you now. They tell you to study, study, and study some more. That is not a free feeling at all.

But the one thing about freedom is that freedom is not “free”. Freedom has duty. Freedom has responsibility. Freedom has a lot of hard work to do. You have duty and responsibility. You have a lot of work to do. It does not feel free, but you are really free.

So many people in the world are not free to go to school or have an education. Many children in Africa, through Asia, in poor places in South America, Australia, North America and Europe are not free to go to school and not free to get an education. Millions of kids around the world must work in dirty factories, on farms, in jungles, and many dangerous places every day. They cannot read and they cannot write, because they are not free to go to school.

It is very hard to study every day. And these days are very hot. You maybe feel like you have no more energy and cannot continue to study. That is very understandable. But you are sometimes free to take a short break from study to get your power back. Then you have to study again. But the kids who live in faraway places, like China, Thailand, Kenya, and many East European countries do not have such a break. They only work.

We need to remember that to have a life of freedom and peace is not easy. We need to work hard, and study hard, and do our jobs. To be free means that we have a duty to keep our freedom safe forever. We need to pass our freedom to the kids who come later in the future. We need to study hard, keep our countries strong, and to educate everyone around us. Education is freedom. Being smart is the gift you get from your parents, grandparents, and people who live before us.

Good luck in your tests coming soon. You have a lot of hard work to do, but you can do it. Remember that you are free and safe to study, and that your study will make you strong and smart.