It's July 4th, 2007 - Independence Day, America's Birthday, the day our forefathers gave The Finger to the British monarchy. It's the day when Americans of all walks of life drink beer, barbeque, and set off a shitload of fireworks. And before the day is over, some poor dogs will have their heads blown off chasing fireworks. Sorry to throw that in there, but it's true.
The U.S.A. is a complex, multi-faceted society full of glorious and confounding contradictions. It's too easy to smear America as the global bully or romanticize America as the beacon of hope. We're both of those at the same time. America is the City on the Hill and Abu Ghiraib. We're the liberators of Europe and the ravagers of Hiroshima. We brought the world the telephone and the Internet, but also the atomic bomb and trash culture. We are the land of opportunity and the great Melting Pot of immigrants around the world, but we are the land of small pox blankets and slavery. We are humanitarians and invaders, scientists and pornographers, philosophers and fools.
The Twenty-First Century is a challenging time for the United States (and everybody else in the world) to say the least. The Fourth of July always finds me a little contemplative of what it means to be an American, this year more so than usual. I really do love my country and what it has traditionally stood for - equality, justice, liberty - but I'd have to be an idiot not to recognize when my country has fallen short of these ideals. Above all this remains the land of possibility and hope, and that's what many of us cling to: the possibility of change and the hope for a better tommorrow.
Wow, sappy. OK, you can turn off the Copeland music now.
How about a collection of the most patriotic posts from Dave's Long Box? Why not?
- Captain America takes the brown acid and meets legendary figures from American folklore.
- Superman, the ultimate immigrant success story.
- Captain America hits the open road, Easy Rider style.
- The Sentinel Bra: bringing decency to our nation's giant mutant-hunting robots.
- Join S.H.I.E.L.D.! Nick Fury's recruiting Power Point presentation.