Happy Fourth of July 2016 — I think

I’m probably feeling the least patriotic I have in years due to the current political situation in the U.S. This song seems appropriate today (please ignore that Simon and Garfunkel licensed it to the Sanders campaign. I’m ignoring it, anyway).

There’s a famous quote from Erma Bombeck (women’s humorist who was popular in the 70s and 80s) that often gets quoted on Independence Day: “You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.” My basic stance is the same as in past years — I love the United States and I wish we would do better at living up to our own ideals. But this year I feel like we are eating a bit too much potato salad and not looking our actual political choices — and the consequences that they will generate — very actively in the face. I’m not pro-Revolution by any means, but the business at usual that reflects so much of what’s going on in our national political sphere is no longer acceptable, either.

I’m looking at you, Congress. All those people centuries ago pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor so that we could have a democratic government and make our own decisions. And our representatives, caught up in fulfilling their ideological fantasies, largely refuse to legislate. This isn’t principled action, and destroying one’s country is the opposite of patriotism. You may have your own America you’re looking at in your mind, and I’ve got mine in my mind — but when push comes to shove we all have to live in the same one.

Govern, folks. You need to govern. That’s what we elect you to do.

~ by Servetus on July 4, 2016.

14 Responses to “Happy Fourth of July 2016 — I think”

  1. I feel very close to you in this moment (I also read the post about going to Church❤ ) Just wanted to let you know. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  2. Happy 4th July🙂

  3. Amen!

  4. Erma Bombeck – I haven’t heard her name in ages! Happy 4th of July!

  5. Happy 4th indeed. It’s an amazing country and I love it, but unfortunately I do not love some of the idiots and pompous people in our congress and house of rep who will vote against something that will help the people just because it is brought up by an opposing party. There is something in me that thinks to make something better sometimes you have to tear it down and start all over again from the beginning, and believe me I do not mean in a violent way. I am a non violent person. But a restructuring needs to occur.

    • One useful step would be “no unrelated riders” on bills rule. You can’t just attach your favorite cause to every bill — thus automatically guaranteeing that it gets voted down.

  6. As an outsider, this stalemate baffles me, but I do see it as a sympton of a two party system which makes compromise difficult. Here we have so many parties, we always have coaltion governments and something has always gotta give… Right now our government consists of a coaltion between a center right and a center left party. It seems to be working. On the other hand, having so many parties can really splinter the vote, which isn’t always helpful either and politics can be really wishy washy. Even here, I wish people would look more at the merit of some legislation, than criticse soley where it comes from. But at least you (and I) live in a society where freedom of speech and thought is possible, so that has got to be something to celebrate, right? Hope your 4th was nice.

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