Friday, July 3, 2020

Another Fourth

The Fourth of July commemorates the signing of the Declaration of Independence, which was the colonist's declaration of war against Great Britain, whom they believed had become oppressive. It was the start of a revolution. It was a radical act, and failure carried the possibility of being hanged for treason (slowly, and in public).

Funny, then, that modern Fourth of July celebrations enjoin us to pay blind obedience to established symbols of authority: Support the troops. Praise the first responders. Salute the flag. Always root for America. Sing along to crappy music. The spirit of today's celebrations are the exact opposite of the event they memorialize.

Then again, revolution does mean to go round in a circle. The young revolutionary country called the United States is now the sclerotic old fart on the couch, yelling at kids to get off his lawn, and the world is soon going to revolt against him.


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