by Bill Carroll, KC9CIK
The Fourth of July has come and gone. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday, and had time to reflect on what this holiday means to us as Americans and as Amateur Radio Operators.
Our country declared its freedom 241 years ago. We, as Americans, have a pretty good idea what freedoms this has brought us. We are also aware of what freedoms we do not have. We, as Amateur Radio Operators, need to remember our freedom to operate a radio is not always a guarantee.
This would be why Hiram Percy Maxim founded the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) back in 1914. In 1912, Congress established the Radio Act. This was the beginning of what some thought would be the end of amateur radio. It was with this act that we were required to be licensed for our freedom. Don’t forget that in 1917 we were banned from the airwaves. Of course, there was a war going on. After November of 1918, Amateur Radio Operators were returning home from their service to our country. The HAMs expected that the Navy order of 1917 would be rescinded. The ARRL was instrumental in getting us back on the air. Just for a bit of trivia, we should credit Representative William S. Greene from Massachusetts for creating the House Resolution that directed the Navy to rescind the ban.
The ARRL has been very active in monitoring what our leaders, and others in the nation, are doing that may impede upon our freedoms as HAMs. This is why our club is a member of the ARRL, and why I encourage all of you that are able to join the ARRL as members. This group does a lot of things that impact our hobby for the better and keeps our freedoms alive on the air.
Thanks for taking the time to read this, and I hope that you consider a membership into the ARRL.