By Michael O'Brien - 07/04/09 07:59 AM EDT
"Today, we are called to remember not only the day our country was born, we are also called to remember the indomitable spirit of the first American citizens who made that day possible," Obama said. "That is the spirit we are called to show once more."
Those challenges, Obama said, include rejuvenating the economy as well as reforming healthcare, energy policy, and the educational system.
"These are some of the challenges that our generation has been called to meet. And yet, there are those who would have us try what has already failed; who would defend the status quo," Obama said. "These naysayers have short memories."
"We are not a people who fear the future. We are a people who make it," the president added. "And on this July 4th, we need to summon that spirit once more."
Obama called on Americans to "make the most of this extraordinary moment," and make their mark on history.