The Glorious Fourth

Fourth of July fireworks, Mamacita's fireworksMamacita says:  We used to go all-out for over-the-counter fireworks; my son and his friends were crazy about them. They were too young to buy them, so I did that little service for them, smiling sincerely at the clerk while I signed the document that assured the federal government that I wasn’t going to USE the fireworks; I was just buying them so I could look at them. It was legal to buy them, but illegal to use them in any way that involved a lighted match.  Go figure.

I’m not going to say that there were no accidents involving fireworks in my back yard, but I did used to have TWO cherry trees back there.

And I think everybody’s deck and sidewalk should have scorch marks on them; it tells people that once upon a time, kids lived here.  When I moved out of my parents’ house, I actually wept a little inside at saying goodbye to many years’ worth of scorch marks.

I do not like the loud “bangs,” but I do love the spectacle in the sky. The drought here is so bad that our fireworks show really ought to be cancelled; it would be the wise thing to do, but apparently it’s still on tonight’s agenda.

We all also know that fools everywhere are going to disregard all the fire warnings; already I can hear the bangs and booms all over the neighborhood.  These people be crazy.  There will be sirens all over town.  The fireworks tents and kiosks here are all displaying signs reading “Don’t worry about the fireworks ban; our products won’t cause fires.”

Because gunpowder and matches never cause fires, especially on grass so dry it pierces a bare foot like widely-spaced awls.

My ability to suffer fools decreases with each passing day;  I often think that if our society didn’t try so hard to put up with fools, there might not be as many.

The Bible is harder on fools than on evil people, to which I say, YESS. Evil people can reform; fools stay stupid all their lives, and bring everyone and everything around them down, as well.

I do not believe that Americans take the Fourth of July seriously enough, any more. It used to be huge deal, with entire communities taking part: leaders read the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence aloud as the audience recited in their heads along with him – yes, everyone used to be required to memorize important documents! Memorizing things was considered good exercise for the brain. Now, we’ve got kids who don’t know their own middle names, and wouldn’t know the second line to a nursery rhyme if they were offered cash for it. Sad, sad, and very, very bad. (I seriously believe that children who don’t know a dozen nursery rhymes by heart before they ever set foot in kindergarten have been raised poorly, and that their parents are fools.) (Don’t get me started about stupid parents; you might not like what will happen.)

Independence Day is important. It should remind us of the many things we take for granted that citizens of other countries would give anything to have.

It should remind us of how our nation began, and what it stands for, and why we should never take any part of our freedoms for granted. It should make us remember to be grateful.

Independence Day is one of my favorite movies, and, corny as it may be, I love this speech by the President, portrayed by Bill Pullman.


In America, it’s legal to question.  Smart people love and encourage questions.  Any belief system that can’t hold up under questioning is not a viable belief system. Any person whose sensibilities are offended by questions about his/her beliefs, and who can’t abide other people’s beliefs, and who don’t wish to have anybody else’s beliefs demonstrated in any way, are themselves the very fools who deserve the punishments fools have ultimately gotten for a thousand years.

I don’t like fools. Nope, not a bit. They’re just so, so, so. . . . foolish.

Be smart on the Fourth.  If you’re one of the many areas that is drought-ridden, don’t play with matches.  If your kids are very young, or any age and irresponsible, don’t allow them to get anywhere near a match under any circumstances.

There are safe ways to blow things up and have fun on the Fourth; go for those.  Oh, and DON’T break open a glow stick and add it to anything; those glowing bubble posts and pins are hoaxes.  The stuff inside a glow stick can be dangerous.

And above all, think about where we live, and be grateful.  Gratitude is one of the most beautiful of all emotions.  Feel it and share it.  Appreciate things.  Express that appreciation.  Glory in the wonder of living in a country that allows you to express it.

Well, unless you try to express it in a public school, that is.  Or many workplaces.  Or. . . . but I digress.

Have a safe and happy Independence Day.  Or, if you don’t believe in that, have a safe and happy Fourth of July.  You HAVE to believe in that one; it falls between the Third of July and the Fifth of July.


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