Happy 4th Of July

July 4th 85 The 4th of July weekend is on us. Time to again celebrate our independence from Great Britain with illegal fireworks and mattress sales. It seems like that’s what it’s come down to.

Of course every holiday seems to be about mattress sales, or big car blowouts. A way to separate you from your money. President’s Day or July 4th or Memorial Day or Arbor Day … it’s the lowest prices of the season.

But this is the most American of holidays. A day set aside to celebrate something uniquely American, and yet in some ways not. Many nations have won their independence from England. We just happened to do it more violently than some, and earlier. We were lucky enough to be in the Bahamas last year for Bahamian independence day … July 10th rather than the 4th, and the people of the islands celebrated quietly, with their families. No fireworks, no furniture sales. We did find that we couldn’t buy an Bahamian flag for our golf cart.

Much has changed in the 233 years since we the course of human events caused us to dissolve our political bonds with King George III. When we declared that “All Men Are Created Equal”, and endowed with “Certain Unalienable Rights. And among those rights are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

That pursuit of happiness has been somewhat more difficult, given the state of the economy today. The pressures are enormous on everyday people.

July 4th 127 But today we’ll fly our flags and go watch the fireworks down at the beach. We’ll remember what is great about America. We’ll grill and many will show their exuberance by setting off explosions of their own, reminiscent of “The Rocket’s Red Glare”. Will remember what the fight for independence was all about? Will we remember that it was so we could assemble with the people we want and worship or not as we see fit. For the right to self-governance, and  233 years of peaceful transfer of power. I hope so. We live in the greatest country on the planet. We’ve come farther faster than anyone could have imagined. We’ve been to the moon and we’re planning to go back. We’re what everyone wants to be, even when they say they don’t like us very much. That, or they’re trying to take us down.

But we were born of a fight, and it’s something we know how to do well. We’ve scrapped out way through a lot of adversity, and there’s not a good reason this time should work out any differently.

I told a friend of mine not too long ago that I believed the republic will survive. He disagreed, saying republics don’t have a good history of survival.

I’m of a mind that The United States Of America will be the exception that proves the rule.




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Filed under 4th of July, Thoughts, United States of America

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