From Wikipedia: Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain.
For all my friends in the Kingdom of Great Britain, I love you, but you’re better off without us anyway…we know that, you know that. Let’s just agree to disagree, okay? (chuckling right now, okay? come on, you can take a joke, right?).
Here are a few highlights of 4th of July for me:
- Love of Country. My country of origin is a little like my family. I was born into it and had no choice in the matter. The ideals are lofty, but sometimes the execution and interpretation seems imperfect. Beauty abounds, but I can also see age cracks, impatience and stubbornness. Through it all, I never stop loving.
- Celebration of Independence. We are the most free people in the world and I definitely celebrate and support this. That doesn’t mean I want to have my own individual half acre city/state. I need some help and some rules in order to be everything I can be. I am not part of the 1%, and I need community.
- Recognition of the men and women who serve and have served to keep us free. Even though I did not serve in the military, I recognize the need for a strong military. I always support the troops that go and do what their leaders lead them into. They are part of the backbone of our country. The leaders, not so much. The leaders are people and they make mistakes and have independent opinions, just like I do. While I recognize that they serve our country as well, I don’t hesitate to try to fire them or rehire them as I see fit.
- Celebration of the diversity that made our country great. Our country was originally founded by people fleeing from religious persecution. We set up a model to make sure this country continued to be diverse. Diversity isn’t something you can put a defined ring around. It is, by it’s nature, diverse.
- Finally, the second sentence of the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
- It did say all men, right? That’s really hard to misinterpret. I mean, really, I suppose you could argue all day about “men” vs. “men and women”, but come on, that’s just stupid. And it didn’t say “all men–except if they are black or gay or Irish or…whatever…” did it? All is all.
- What a simple, clear thought. Then the “interpretation” starts…ugh.
Bottom line, here’s what the 4th is to me:
Celebration and family. Happy Independence Day to all of you!