An Invocation for a Fourth of July Dinner in California
Dov Fischer
by

O L-rd, our G-d in Heaven,

On this 243rd anniversary of our declaring independence from tyranny and launching the greatest human experiment in world history, we stand together before you on this beautiful day that You created — and made gorgeous, by Your grace and Your loving-kindness for all You created — with the word of “Thanks!” on our lips. Simply: Thanks.

Thank you for creating a world with Your wisdom, with a sun, moon, and a constellation of stars to separate day from night, to mark seasons and holy times of remembrance, to give light and darkness, warmth and coolness, health and sustenance.

Thank you for creating the trees and vegetables on earth that provide foods, vitamins, and minerals we need, abundant in diverse tastes — from the bitter to the tart to the sweet — and in a rainbow of colors and a plethora of aromas to whet our appetites and draw us to wonderful meals.

Thank you for surrounding us with a kingdom of wild and domestic animals, some with internal life mechanisms so similar to our own that we can learn from their biological systems to care medically for human beings — for we are the central purpose of Your Creation. As it is written: “And G-d created man in His own image. In the image of G-d He created him. Male and female He created them.” And only male and female.

Thank you for the oceans, the rivers, the seas. For evaporation that elevates their moisture to the clouds, and for the winds that propel those clouds to travel over dry land, where they condense and sustain us with the water that all Your Creation needs.

O G-d, You blessed us uniquely and particularly among all people, to live at this time, in this greatest of all countries on earth.Great, in that we were conceived in liberty and are constituted in freedom and in true social justice. A social justice that is rooted in the belief that each of us bears personal responsibility to uphold our end of the social contract we share with our fellow Americans. Personal responsibility.

We are a nation that is so generous and kind, as we share our wealth and bounty with other nations — even with enemies — at their times of natural disaster: the typhoons, hurricanes, eathquakes, and such by which You test our humanity.

We affirm our deep religious belief that we are bidden to extend a social safety net to those among us — our fellow citizens, our fellow American citizens — who fall on hard times by no fault of their own: victims of natural disaster, crises of health, and unexpected economic hard times. We are charitable and generous beyond any nation, and we take care of our own because that is right. And we do what is right.

Grant us the wisdom, the understanding and discernment, and the knowledge of our shared human history to know where we, the Kind and the Merciful, must draw the line between Charity and Grace, on the one hand, and Foolishness, on the other — to avoid a Fool’s Gold that, in the name of “progressive humanity,” ultimately would topple the entire fabric of true social justice that our Founding Fathers set in motion when they declared independence from a tyrant and affirmed, in the idiom of their day, that all people are created equal.

It is not our duty as Your servants, O G-d, to assure equal outcomes — but to guarantee equal opportunities. If some emerge with more through their own honest labor or wise devises — or just by virtue of Your Will, that You have chosen them for such success — their good fortune inspires us to strive to learn from them. How blessed many of us are to have grown up in a society that taught us the importance of self-reliance — not government aid — and to strive for our own self-betterment, both in material possessions and even-more-so in spiritual growth!

We live today in a California governed and repressed by those whose values we do not fully recognize from the Word of Your Holy Scriptures. Protect us, O G-d, from their compassions that are not compassions. They build walls around their own properties and land, but they deny us the right to protect our land similarly. They buy their children’s ways into exclusive schools, or they live in exclusively zoned communities to assure that their children attend elite schools that are not attended by the “riff-raff” they despise, but they impose on everyone else’s children admisions standards that do not purely reward merit and academic achievement but that discriminate with demographic quotas that deny achievement and hard work. They surround themselves with hired armed guards while opposing our rights to bear arms legally.

They demand that all around them pay ever-higher taxes to support their ever-failing social experiments, while they move their assets overseas and establish legal residence in nearby no-tax states, even as their corporations avoid those taxes. In the name of progressive liberalism, they have replaced mental-health-care services with money handouts, breeding streets of mentally ill and drug-addicted homeless Victims of Progressive Caring, encamped in squalor and amid unspeakably worse on the public sidewalks, with rats and diseases like typhus now a symbol of a once-Golden State. May others in our blessed country observe and note what such social experiments have wreaked on California, and may others protect themselves from the progressive socialist values that have caused so much pain and suffering throughout the world.

Many of us are particularly blessed to have grown up at a time when we somberly and respectfully recited a prayer to You each morning to start our school day, when public school teachers and their students safely could wish each other “Merry Christmas!” or “Happy Passover!” … and when we found instruction in moral values, not from a college Professor of Identity Studies, nor from a California public school curriculum, but by learning Your Word from parents reading the Bible to us at home or from religious teachings conveyed in a church, mosque, or synagogue sermon from our priest, pastor, imam, or rabbi.

As we sit now to break bread and share of the bounty with which You have graced this greatest country, we bless you, O L-rd Our G-d King of the Universe, Who creates the fruit of the tree, Who creates the fruit of the earth, Who brings forth bread from the land, and by Whose Word all exists. Amen.

Dov Fischer
Dov Fischer
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Rabbi Dov Fischer, Esq., a high-stakes litigation attorney of more than twenty-five years and an adjunct professor of law of more than fifteen years, is rabbi of Young Israel of Orange County, California. His legal career has included serving as Chief Articles Editor of UCLA Law Review, clerking for the Hon. Danny J. Boggs in the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and then litigating at three of America’s most prominent law firms: JonesDay, Akin Gump, and Baker & Hostetler. In his rabbinical career, Rabbi Fischer has served several terms on the Executive Committee of the Rabbinical Council of America, is Senior Rabbinic Fellow at the Coalition for Jewish Values, has been Vice President of Zionist Organization of America, and has served on regional boards of the American Jewish Committee, B’nai Brith Hillel, and several others. His writings on contemporary political issues have appeared over the years in the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, the Jerusalem Post, National Review, American Greatness, The Weekly Standard, and in Jewish media in American and in Israel. A winner of an American Jurisprudence Award in Professional Legal Ethics, Rabbi Fischer also is the author of two books, including General Sharon’s War Against Time Magazine, which covered the Israeli General’s 1980s landmark libel suit.
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