But what is freedom, exactly? At its core, freedom is the ability to live our lives as we see fit, without interference or coercion from others. It is the freedom to think, speak, and act as we choose without fear of retribution or punishment. It is the freedom to pursue our dreams and aspirations and to live in a world where we are judged not by our race, gender, religion, or nationality but by the content of our character.
Freedom is also a responsibility. With freedom comes the obligation to use it wisely, to respect the rights and freedoms of others, and to contribute to the common good. We must be mindful of our action’s impact on others and strive to create a world where everyone can live a life of purpose.
Freedom is not a reality for everyone. Far too many people worldwide are still denied their fundamental human rights, oppressed, and unable to live as they choose. From the brutal dictatorships of China, North Korea, and Turkey (I didn’t have any idea before meeting Enes), to the systemic oppression of minorities in many countries, to the everyday injustices people face worldwide, we still have a long way to go in the struggle for freedom and equality.
We can’t lose hope. As we celebrate the freedoms we enjoy today, we must remember that work must still be done. We must stand in solidarity with those oppressed and marginalized and work tirelessly to ensure everyone can enjoy the same freedoms we may sometimes take for granted.
Freedom is not just a word. It is a way of life. It is the foundation upon which we build our communities, societies, and world. Let us all commit ourselves to the cause of freedom, and in doing so, let us create a world that is truly just, equal, and free for all.