Sunday, July 4, 2010

Why Celebrate July Fourth?

Why should we celebrate July Fourth?

What do we really think about on that day? Do we think about parades? Do we think about backyard cook-outs? Do we think about fireworks?

More than likely, the answer is yes. We think about all those things. But why?

Why does this day mean so much to us? What is it about the 4th of July that causes us to regale ourselves in red, white and blue? Why do we encourage our children to participate in parades and record those events on film? Why do we insist that our kids decorate their bikes, their skateboards or their tricycles in the colors of our flag? Moreover, why do our children comply?

We don't just celebrate a day in the past, one that happened many, many years ago. We celebrate the birth of a concept. We celebrate the leaders that conceived that concept. We celebrate the collective acceptance of that concept's meaning. We celebrate the continuing relevance of that concept in our lives today.

But what if someone tried to change that concept?

What happens if we decide that the basis for our celebration is no longer relevant? What happens if we dismiss those that created the concept as mere figments of our imagination, or, what if we deny their existence? What happens if we no longer teach our children the meaning of the Fourth of July?

Does it cease to exist?

I'm flying the stars and stripes until I go under. I signed on to this task when I got older and remembered that my bike had to be red, white and blue, despite not knowing why. Although I didn't know why then, I definitely know why now. Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Lincoln, Reagan and now Palin. Patriots and leaders all, who will always remind us what our country is truly all about.

Why do you celebrate the 4th of July?

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