They were 233 years old.
"We have good reason to believe that Freedom, Liberty, and Independence did not die of natural causes. This incident is currently classified as a homicide. We are still questioning witnesses and analyzing evidence, but we have one main suspect at this time."
American Freedom, Liberty, and Independence are survived by their relatives, American Ingenuity, American Exceptionalism, the Spirit of God in America, and American Democracy.
The threesome were famous for their exploits over the course of their lives. Shortly after their birth they helped George Washington defeat the British in the War for Independence. They were also present when Andrew Jackson drove the Brits out again in the war of 1812.
Of course, they ran into some trouble with authority during their adolescent days as most young people do. That feeling of rebellion common in most young adults spilled over with the beginning of the terrible Civil War. However, it was not all tragedy during their youth. They also guided Abraham Lincoln as he signed the Emancipation Proclamation.
As they began to mature, the three friends experienced some successes in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. But, just before they could start getting arrogant, they began what would be nearly a century long battle against oppression and tyranny, led by Woodrow Wilson. World War I was a temporary respite from the attacks here at home as the trio helped our men fight bravely overseas.
Life seemed to be going smoothly for a while during the Roaring 20's, but as the Depression suddenly began, Freedom, Liberty, and Independence were shoved rudely back into reality. They hit the streets with their good friends American Spirit and American Ingenuity in an effort to keep the American people's morale high during the tough times. But the infamous Franklin D. Roosevelt emerged and initiated the programs that would ultimately become the trio's undoing.
Freedom, Liberty, and Independence contracted very severe cases of acute tyrannical disorder (ATD) and Magnus Governmentalis (Big Government) shortly after FDR assumed the Presidency. Doctors also discovered the Nannium Statum cancer (Nanny State) in all three of the friends in 1936.
The on-set of World War II was another temporary relief from these illnesses. Their cancer also seemed to disappear. The three traveled all around the world bringing their naturally good-natured spirit with them. US troops overseas welcomed them with open arms. In France, they resuscitated their old friends French Liberty, Freedom, and Independence. In Germany, Japan, and other places they also met people much like themselves.
The end of the the War was a great day for them. They were cheered in the streets of New York City and other places around the country. Everything seemed right in the world. The three friends had been through hell and survived. Now, it seemed, they had grown up.
And indeed it seemed they had, for the 1950s were a time of tremendous growth in the America. President Eisenhower helped Freedom, Liberty, and Independence do many wonderful things around the country. There was no reason to think things would change. But they did.
During the 1960s, the trio hit what they later called their "mid-life crisis." While they did do good things with the Civil Rights Act and other such laws, they may have gone a little too far in some other areas. As they later admitted, "We thought the world was ours. We didn't think of the long-term consequences of some of our actions. The whole hippie-thing was a bad idea."
In the 1980s, Freedom, Liberty, and Independence shined again. Not only did they work their magic in America with the help of their good friend, Ronald Reagan, but they also went around the world showing their cousins in other nations how to do things correctly. Margaret Thatcher used many of their ideas in Great Britain. Even Mikhail Gorbachev partly released Russian Freedom, Liberty, and Independence at the behest of their American counterparts and Ronald Reagan.
The 1990s and 2000s were an up and down time for this tremendous trio. They had a relapse of the Nannium Statum with some of the reforms and new laws of the '90s. Magnus Governmentalis also reemerged. However, September 11 rejuvenated them unlike any other event since World War II. They seemed strong and healthy as they had ever been.
But the increasing government power amassed during the Bush administration after 9/11 only served to diminish their health. After the creation of the Department of Homeland Security, Liberty became an alcoholic. Freedom and Independence grew increasingly concerned about their friend. Things only got worse with the bank bailout of 2008.
The election of a new president in 2008 seemed like it would again rejuvenate Freedom, Liberty, and Independence; Liberty even gave up alcohol for a short time. But things quickly spiraled out of control. The nationalization of banks, automakers, lenders, home mortgage companies, and most recently the entire health industry were the final death blows for the three old friends.
Today, on the steps of the capitol, their bodies lay badly beaten, bruised, and bloodied. Witnesses said they were barely recognizable, were it not for the fact that they were wrapped in the American Flag.
One witness claims to have seen the whole event, "I was enjoying my tour of our wonderful Capitol City, when I heard some commotion over on the steps. I saw a tall, skinny figure and two cohorts savagely beating Freedom, Liberty, and Independence. I never saw his face clearly. But it kinda seemed to me that he looked like he was enjoying it.
"It's such a shame, especially since they had just celebrated a birthday."
Memorial services have actually already been scheduled. They will be held this Sunday in parts of the country were people cling to their guns and religion. To be admitted you will have to either be wearing a military uniform, be pro-life, have a southern accent, like deer hunting, drink beer and sweet tea, listen to country music, go to church on Sundays, believe in traditional marriage, enjoy steak and barbeque, be from Texas (or any other red state), wear a cowboy hat, or drive a tractor (preferably a John Deere).
Environmentalists, gay-rights activists, abortionists, democrats, liberals, fascists, communists, socialists, and Hollywood actors will be turned away.
The family asks that you please send donations to your local church or go purchase a gun in their honor.
This was originally written in July of 2009. Minor grammatical and typographical edits were made in August 2013.