4th of July

Question: When does Canada celebrate its 4th of July?
Answer: The 4th of July.

I actually missed this question on a high school world history exam except it was referring to Bastille Day and the French. How stupid was I to fall for that trick question?

Today is Independence Day for the United States. 231 years ago, notorious drunkards wearing wigs and knickers, inked a document declaring all men are equal, except black men and women, and all other women. Oh well, it was a great start.

Americans are proud and obnoxious people. The more I look at us from the world’s eye, the more I can see why the world resents us.

My 80-something mother from the WWII generation told me recently that she thought we used to be the good guys. Now she is not so sure.

I wish we wouldn’t squander our wealth and blessings on forcing our will on the world.

I wish we didn’t trash our Constitution years ago. For example, you’ll never make me believe road blocks are constitutional no matter how noble the intent. All I can think of is Nazi Germany’s road blocks, “Your papers please.”

We ignore the massacre of 800,000 people in the Sudan and dwell on single individuals like Castro and Hussein.

I guess I wouldn’t be cynical about my country if I didn’t love my country. I get so frustrated at the vast separation between the ideals of our founding fathers, and the reality that we have made.

I will enjoy my day today and play golf with a friend, eat a big meal with my family, and watch fireworks tonight.

I am grateful to be an American.


Alyssa said...

Very interesting to read your perspective. I agree with the idea that when you really love your country, you can be critical about it. I feel the same way about Canada - I love this place, I feel blessed to live here, but I think there are a lot of things we could be doing differently.

(By the way, I love reading your blog - it's one of my favourites - Usually I can never think of a comment to leave though!)