Posted tagged ‘Independence Day’

Independence Day Love Letter

July 4, 2022

Good Morning, My Country,

amer heartHow are you? Fine, you say.  I’m not so sure.   Oh, you are still beautiful.  Sometimes you take my breath away, like when I sit here looking up at the snow covered Wasatch Mountains.  It reminds me of America the Beautiful.   Yes, I love the National Anthem but America the Beautiful was always our song, wasn’t it?   Purple mountains majesty above the fruited plain.  It always brings tears to my eyes when I hear Ray Charles sing it.  Crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.

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Independence Day

July 4, 2018

3dflags-usa1-3I consider myself a patriot. A right-leaning but moderate patriot. I believe that which way you lean … right or left … has nothing to do with whether you are a patriot. In part, being a patriot means truly believing that the way you lean … your political and moral compass … is best for the USA.  That, however, is just a start. In this country, acknowledging that others have a right to believe differently … and say so … is also a condition for being a patriot. As a patriot, I want to post something for our nation’s birthday, something positive, or at least hopeful. Not easy, watching what is going on in my country these days, both sides yelling and calling names. Just out of curiosity, I looked back at Bud’s Blog over the last nine years and found a post, Independence, from five years ago.   We had a different president and a different party in charge, but my message applies just as well today.  In part, it said this:

declaration I got up this morning and read the Declaration of Independence in its entirety, not just the beginning that we all find so stirring. 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. Stirring. To my embarrassment (blush) as I read on, though, I realized I had never read the whole document, even though I’ve stood in front of it … in some awe … in the National Archives.

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A Long Ago Fourth

July 4, 2015

01_fireworks_thumbI have always loved fireworks.  Of course, a zillion years ago, when I was a kid, we not only went to fireworks displays, we watched as our Dads set them off in the street in front of our house.   And, if we could come by a string of firecrackers or a few cherry bombs … by hook or by crook … we would set them off in the woods by ourselves.  The first time I remember actually buying fireworks was during at a stay at the lakefront home of my father’s boss, Joe.   Approximately sixty years have dimmed the details of this story, but I’ll fill them in from my imagination as necessary.   Joe had four kids … the oldest was a boy.  We’ll call him Billy.  I would guess I was about twelve at the time and he was several years older than I.  There was a younger sister named June on whom I had a terrible crush but I was a shy twelve year old so it has remained unconfessed until now.

Shortly before Independence Day, Billy and I took Joe’s rowboat across the lake to a fireworks stand on old Route 80.  My Dad had given me some just in case money and buying some fireworks seemed like a good just in case.Cherry-bomb   Naturally, being boys, we didn’t buy sparklers and ground flowers.  It was cherry bombs, electric cannons, and a few exploding sky rockets.   Cherry bombs and electric cannons were serious explosives … they could hurl an empty soup can hundreds of feet in the air, blow a hole in a rotten tree stump … or blow off a twelve year old’s fingers.   Somewhere along the line, Billy’s Mom suspected we were up to something and interrogated us separately.  He stonewalled but I confessed and so, on the Fourth of July, when our Dads set off our fireworks in front of the house, I was allowed to watch and he was confined to his room.   Watching the fireworks wasn’t quite as much fun that year knowing I’d ratted on my friend.

So what is this post about, other than finally shedding a bit of guilt I’ve carried for years?  When this story came to mind, I found myself thinking how things have changed since then.   Were my parents … and Billy’s … irresponsible for giving us such freedom?   Or did they simply believe that the only way to become independent adults was to experience the freedom to make mistakes?   I believe I grew up more independent than most kids do these days.   Sometimes, the world can be made less dangerous through rules and regulations.   But every rule and regulation chips away at our Independence.  And Independence is inherently dangerous.  I think that’s worth thinking about on this Independence Day. Have a happy and safe one.

Independence

July 4, 2012

Tonight we will be attending the annual Fourth of July program at Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, a program by the Pacific Symphony featuring patriotic music and, of course, fireworks.  I love fireworks … going to the Fourth of July fireworks at Lighthouse Point in New Haven is one of my fondest childhood memories.  This year’s program is a tribute to The Eagles, which makes me wonder if I’ll be listening to Elevator Music versions of Heartache Tonight and Hotel California.  There’s also a tribute to composer John William’s 80th birthday in which, according to the amphitheater’s program, the audience will have a chance to text vote for the final piece of the first half: either “E.T.” or “Star Wars.  Seriously, do we have to do things to encourage people to use their smart phones during performances?  Yes, Muri, I’m going to leave my curmudgeon at home.  Did I mention there are fireworks? (more…)

Monday Smiles – 7/4/2011

July 4, 2011

My son loves historical documentaries and a subscription to Netflix gives him ample opportunity to watch them.  He often regales us with tales of the flaws in everyman’s knowledge of American history, how what the schools taught is often mythology not fact.  I listen  but rarely have much to say which I know frustrates him.  I’m much more aware of the fallacies of popular American mythology than he thinks I am but history has never been my favorite subject.  Besides, at sixty-seven, I’m interested in the broad strokes of most subjects, not the details.  The broadest stroke of American history is that the U.S has been a uniquely positive influence in a world too often influenced by tyrants, whether they be monarchs, imams, or chancellors, regardless of the warts and little secrets my son finds in his documentaries. (more…)