04 July 2013

Independence Day

Today is Independence Day. One day in the year during which drunken idiots can set off explosives in their yards and driveways in the name of 'Murica.

All joking aside, I'm proud to be an American. I know there are problems in this country, that not everyone is treated equally in a nation that claims equality and freedom. But I also know that change happens, and that's wonderful.

I went to poetry group on Tuesday, and in honor of Independence Day, one of our group members performed "Paul Revere's Ride," which she'll be performing at a local event this fall.

It was a wonderful performance, and reminded me of the passion of the people of the Revolutionary War for what they believed. They took a stand and didn't back down.

People don't take stands the way they once did. Perhaps that's due in part to more freedoms than we once had--we don't have the same reasons to stand up. That being said, we have a long way to go.

A major advance was made with the Supreme Court's decisions on DOMA and Prop 8 (congratulations, brothers and sisters in California!), but another basic freedom--voting--has been challenged. There is still a chasm between classes in this country. There are homeless, hungry, unemployed people that aren't getting the support they need. There are children who have no families or support. There are elderly who have no proper care.

There's a helluva lot of work to be done.

I hope that as we celebrate the first step toward equality and freedom that came centuries ago we stay this passionate about other issues. That we remember those who fought for what they believed in, and take that heart to make changes in our nation today.

The United States is the people. We are the nation. And if we want things to happen, we have to make them happen. Go be America.

And happy Independence Day.

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