What shall we celebrate this 4th of July this year? For many in this great republic America, it’s the all too traditional answer: freedom from Canada, after a protracted and bloody Civil War which divided the country between east and west. Forget that this is incorrect in every possible facet. If there’s anything protected in our Constitution of Independence, it’s the right to be ignorant, publicly, at full volume. It’s the foundation this nation was built on, and we’ll do whatever we have to to uphold it. Irregardless of consequentialities.
Jingoistic cluelessness is not just for the stupid, however. It pervades all strata of our vast homeland, from Hollywood to Washington DC. We’re just as proud to boast wildly about our milquetoast recycled blockbuster prequels and sequels, as we are to appoint activist Supreme Court Justices who throw precedent to the wind in favor of politicized, conservative agendas. Hip hip horah for the red white and blue.
Some claim we’re not what we used to be. That we’ve gotten soft and lazy. That we’ve dropped off the face of the earth in terms of manufacturing. We don’t create anything anymore, they bellow with grammar free conviction. But they’re nothing more than naysayers. We’re still competing in many of the industries that made this country what it was. Cigarettes for example. It should be a point of pride for every American to know that we’re a proud #2 behind China, who makes about four times as many smokes as we do. But second place is pretty damn good on a planet of millions and billions of countries.
We must do our darnedest to drown out the joyous litany of complaints being made from both the left and the right. They want to bitch that everything’s gone to hell in a recycling bin, when the fact is, America is still working quite nicely. There are several Arab nations left we can start conflicts with to keep our well-oiled war machine running smoothly. And anyone with a dream and a billion dollars can become this nation’s supreme executive in chief.
On the personal level, times are as good as ever. A half-decent lawyer and ten to fifteen grand will get everything from DWI to sexual harassment expunged from your record. We can still grow dope legally in several states, or stay on death row for decades on the tax payer’s nickle, or eat all the genetically modified food we want, bought in bulk from Costco. Austerity measures be damned in the U.S of A.
What really gets my goat in a twist, are the absurd claims that our current president has pushed us toward socialism. Isn’t the god’s honest truth that this country has been a welfare state since its inception? For as much as institutionalized theft and free markets have dominated, so have great public works. You just wanna take the critics who bash everything but unfettered capitalist by the lapels, and yank them (and their children) through The Grand Canyon, or Yellowstone National Park, or The Griffith Observatory, or across Oakland Bay Bridge, or into La Guardia airport and remind them like a stick in the eye that these altruistic achievements were all not-for-profit. If they weren’t, places like Yosemite would be divvied up into golf courses and McMansions, the American Buffalo be damned. One thing is for certain, when push comes to shove, we’re not letting out citizens starve in the streets.
So lighten up and celebrate the fact that for all the shit we get from the rest of the world, we still got it pretty freggin’ good, and always have. Our government is responsible for facilitating some rather impressing achievements over the years; moon landings, cellular technology, jet engines, penicillin, um…. the internet. Look ’em up and see how they started.
I, for one, am going to the ballyard this July 4th, to see two teams with overpaid Dominican and Japanese players participate in the great American past time of baseball. I’m going to get drunk on delicious imported beer, rather than a tasteless American brand that exploits women in their commercials, eat peanuts and throw the shells on the floor, and most likely devour processed meat in tube form. I just might take a handful of mushrooms while I’m at it. I’m an American dog gammit…. Free to do as I damn well please, so long as I agree to be surveilled by multiple sources while I’m doing it.
They say there’s gonna be fireworks after the game. I really think it would improve the game if it were during.