Another 4th of July has come and gone. I know there were parades. I didn't go. It's not that I'm lacking in patriotism - I'm not. But in those periods of time when we are not at war with ... somebody, we quickly forget why we celebrate this holiday in the first place. Let's face it - veterans marching down the street are not nearly as interesting as the well-endowed pageant queen in the back seat of an open convertible. (For that matter, when was the last time you actually saw veterans marching down the street?)
And so, we choose to honor High School marching bands, clowns on miniature motorcycles, and candidates for political office. We have replaced flag carriers with participants in bed races. And perhaps this is a good thing. Germany and Japan, once our most bitter enemies, have prospered with our help and become our strong supporters. Russia actually needs us now for a number of economic reasons, and England - (Remember them? That's where all this started.) England has almost blindly followed us in too many of our adventures ... (Think not? Ask Tony Blair. Isn't he presently the British representative to the South Pole?)
So I stay home - listen to the fireworks (and gun fire) from a respectable distance. I drink a shot of Vodka in Mexican beer to all those who have gone before me and those who have followed. God bless you! I thank you for your sacrifices. I would love to think we have learned something from our history, and that your descendants will never be called upon to follow in your footsteps ...
but I don't think that will happen.