Today is the crossroads of three important days on the calendars of government, faith, and laborers around the world. Although May 1 is always designated by Federal law as Law Day, and throughout the world celebrated as Labor Day (except in the United States), the first Thursday of May is also the National Day of Prayer by Federal law. Each represent a certain sector of our basic civil liberties, but as these three days may seem to be unique from each other, there is actually a commonality between them that makes today a day to celebrate one single reality: our liberty as Americans.
Beginning with Law Day, we are told by Congress that today is to reaffirm our liberties, to encourage equality in justice in the law, and to cultivate a stronger respect for the rule of law. As President Eisenhower announced on the first Law Day: “In a very real sense, the world no longer has a choice between force and law. If civilization is to survive it must choose the rule of law.”
What we celebrate today is a true freedom that a rule of law provides, as a freedom from tyranny and oppression. A proper rule of law is vital to democracy, because in democracy the people hold the keys to the castle, and not a monarch or a dictator. We citizens have the right to vote for all of our government legislators and executives, to represent us in what our policies ought to be.
We have a due process of law that guarantees that our rights are not merely philosophical ideas, but sound principles that extend to every judicial case, to every state action, and even to our relationship to each other.
On the international Labor Day, as well as St. Joseph the Worker Day, this is important to remember, for even in the United States there are numerous groups exercising the freedoms that the rule of law provides. Today many will use their freedom to assemble and promote their platform for continuing economic and social reform. Others will celebrate the dignity of their work as part of a greater human enterprise, the betterment of the world and their service to humanity.
On National Prayer Day, this day also becomes one of thanksgiving, as Americans are called to turn to prayer and meditation, to reach out and connect their lives with higher pursuits, and to seek direction from above. Again, this invokes the most basic freedoms, to worship publicly without government suppression, and to order our own lives according to our consciences, and to carry out our desires for justice and equality as part of a greater mission.
Celebrating these freedoms is important, especially for lawyers, for we get to act as agents of these freedoms. It is our job to provide equality, to seek justice, to protect liberty, and to work for a greater good of humanity in what we do. When people cry out for justice in their cases, we are the ones called to respond. When people are discriminated against or denied their basic rights, we are in the best position to stand as a defense or win a firm recovery.
As for myself, I cherish this day for all three qualities, for my law practice is not only founded on legal principles and the rule of law, but on my own labor in building a solo practice promoting these values, and on the faith that my practice can truly be a participation with the divine law and the advancement of our human dignity.
If reading this has inspired you to get involved and use your freedoms in a more positive way, please comment below. And if I can be of assistance in helping you to achieve justice, equality, and liberty, whether with a court proceeding or some other legal need, please contact me for a free consultation appointment as to how I can work with you to achieve a satisfactory result.
DISCLAIMER: Please do not prepare your own documents / filings after reading this blog, without consulting an attorney first about your specific situation. I make no representations or guarantees here as to the applicability of any claim in your specific situation. This blog is ADVERTISING MATERIAL only, and should not be relied upon as legal advice, especially if you are not an Illinois resident. Please contact me if you have a legal question or concern, as no attorney-client agreement will exist between myself and any readers of this blog unless it is signed in writing.
Photo: The Statue of Liberty, by Antonu / public domain