In this installment of their weekly Sunday Six conversation, PF Whalen and Parker Beauregard of The Blue State Conservative consider reasons to be pumped up in rejoicing and celebrating America’s independence: The Fourth of July.
#6: Because celebrating America and recognizing our greatness pisses off leftists.
PF: It’s not true for everyone on the left, but it’s definitely true for a large portion of them, and those are the ones who are the most annoying. We live in the greatest country that has ever existed, and everyone from slightly-left-of-center to the solid right not only understands this fact, they embrace it. But the real leftists, the tried-and-true BLM/Antifa/Socialist/Femi-Nazi coalition, they hate our country. They’re ignorant and infuriating, but there are also far too many of them, and shoving our patriotism down their throats can be extremely satisfying.
A nearby community has a terrific Independence Day celebration each year, and they go all-out. It’s terrific. About ten years ago I went to it with my family. While walking around the lake there with some friends – one of whom wore an over-the-top patriotic outfit complete with an oversized version of Uncle Sam’s hat – a young man, probably in his early-20s, yelled to us, “America sucks!” I thought my one friend was going to punch him in the head, but instead we just started chanting “USA! USA! USA!” and soon a bunch of other neighbors joined in. It was very cool.
In addition to being kind of twistedly fulfilling, this approach does serve a purpose. Our friends on the left think that America is what they see on Twitter, MSNBC, CNN, and the New York Times. It’s not. They think they are in the majority, and that Americans are down on our country, when in reality the opposite is true. The Fourth of July is an opportunity to have our patriotism on full display. To show our love for our country, and to make damn sure the moron leftists in our midst get the message: “America is great, and there’s nothing an idiot like you is going to do to change that fact.”
#5: Because gratitude is healthy – and all Americans (especially blacks, gays, women, etc.) owe a lot of gratitude to the Founders.
Parker: The older I get, and as my infant turns morphs into a toddler, the more I appreciate the concept of gratitude. Gratitude can be as simple as saying “thank you” when someone holds the door or as powerful as saying “thank you” to our Creator for empowering a generation of thoughtful, intelligent, sagacious, prescient, and brave men to devise the best system of human governance ever constructed.
It’s safe to say that most Americans take their wonderful country for granted. This is the opposite of gratitude. Rather than assemble for annual reminders, gatherings, and celebrations, presumably half the nation (looking at you, Biden voters) focuses only on the magnified sins of the founders.
While white men have been the most fortunate white men in the history of mankind, the same can be said of all individuals and groups broken down by ethnicity, culture, race, sex, sexual orientation, anbd whatever other concocted oppressed group arises. Pansexual dwarfism? I would wager my house that trans, ananormative, pansexual little people fare better here than any other time or place. Hundreds of years ago, they were probably left to die like runts in a litter. Later on, they would haplessly prance as jesters – to be used only as objects of scorn and ridicule. But in America? I daresay that entire reality programs celebrated and brought dwarfism to the mainstream with programming like Little People, Big World. Before that, heroic Nelwyns were brought to the big screen in epic tales like Willow.
I can’t help but feel like that paragraph took me down a tangent, but the idea remains the same. America has always been called the Land of Opportunity. Do you know why it wasn’t called the Land of Outcome? Because that would be insane. America is not evil because it had slavery or legally barred women from voting in national contests until the 20th century; America is wholly good because it corrected for its errors. On July 4th of 1776, our Founding Fathers unveiled a document that would allow for these corrections. For that, we show gratitude.
#4: Because it’s the second-best holiday of the year.
PF: The best holiday of the year is Thanksgiving, hands down. Christmas is wonderful, but it’s expensive and so stressful. Easter is terrific, but it’s much more reflective for me, from a religious standpoint. New Year’s Eve, Labor Day, President’s Day? Meh. Thanksgiving is a celebration of faith, and country, and appreciation to God, and it’s my favorite holiday. But Independence Day isn’t far behind.
First, there’s the stress level. The Fourth of July is never taxing. As far as celebrating goes, the Fourth of July is laid back, with an “anything goes” attitude. Want to take in a ballgame? Sounds good. Hang by the pool? Go for it. Head to the beach? Let’s go. Have a barbecue? I’ll bring the beer and hot dogs. And it’s a celebration of the wonders of summertime as well: corn on the cob, watermelon, warm weather. The peripheral aspects of the Fourth of July are just fantastic, and it makes for a fun day every time.
But the true meaning of Independence Day makes it even that much better. I was in Canada a few years ago on “Canada Day,” which falls on July 1st each year. It was interesting, and I got a kick out of some of their festivities, but Canada Day is nothing like Independence Day in the U.S. How could it be? Canada isn’t independent. They’re still a dominion of Great Britain and have pictures of the Queen on their currency for crying out loud. France has their Bastille Day, Mexico has Cinco de Mayo, and most countries have some day or period set aside to celebrate national pride and nationalism. But the Fourth of July is special. And when you roll all those attributes into one big holiday, Independence Day is simply fantastic.
#3: Because America serves a bigger purpose.
Parker: America was the first, and is now the last, best hope for freedom in our world. Its ordainment as a bastion in an otherwise unforgiving and treacherous world came from more than mere mortals. As sagacious and prescient as our Founders were, at the end of the day they did not possess any more wisdom or courage than countless, albeit unnamed and unsung, men before them. That is not to diminish their defeats in the slightest.
In fact, past Americans recognized this as fact. Aside from the religiosity of the Founders – who even if they were not devout, practicing Christians nevertheless were raised in religious households and were daily immersed in a much more religious society – generations of Americans could identify the majesty of this young nation. The famous painting of Manifest Destiny heralds pioneers across virgin territory en route to the plains, mountains, and Pacific Ocean. (To those that protest by saying these lands were already inhabited, it suffices to reply with: “Yes, they were. But so what? What moral greatness did any of the Indian tribes bestow upon the world?” It’s worth pointing out that the same people who enact “Land Acknowledgements” are the same folks that lined up for the first Pfizer pokes. You can’t have it both ways. The Indians would still be migrating with Buffalo, not developing a novel gene therapy in response to biological warfare.)
The entire world, not just the United States, has been blessed by our country’s existence. Freedom began here, and for those willing to embrace it, have found similarly unprecedented material wealth and individual liberty than ever imagined. Asia has centuries of ruthless monarchical rule. In the past 100 years, countries like Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Vietnam, and Thailand have embraced Western capitalism and democracy. More Asians are thriving than ever before. The same can certainly be said of European countries. We were the first to eradicate monarchical rule; though it took decades more, today every single European country operates under a democratic, capitalist model. It’s so successful that Bernie Sanders wants to emulate it. Well, just the white Nordic countries…err, never mind.
I’ll end with this thought: Without America, there is no national sovereignty. Without America, there is no global escape from dictatorship and serfdom. The right time, place, and people conspired to resist human history and devise a new form of governance and self-reliance than had ever been allowed to exist before. Given the goodness America has done, it is hard to see how that is simply an accident. God loves mankind. America has made life better for mankind.
#2: Because it’s fascinating to reflect on our history and the miraculous formation of America.
PF: I won’t be dwelling extensively on the historical aspects of the Fourth of July today, I’ll be too busy throwing horseshoes and enjoying friends and family. But our history will come to my mind without a doubt, and it will happen more than once.
George Washington wasn’t at the signing of the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia on July 4, 1776, as he was busy commanding his troops in New York. But his presence was certainly felt, and the realization of our sovereignty is due largely to Washington’s efforts. There has never been another national leader like George Washington. His legacy is enthralling, and he has virtual mythical status. And he’s our very own.
Thomas Jefferson’s absolutely brilliant writing of the Declaration itself comes across almost as poetry. John Adams’ contributions to the document are somewhat nuanced, but are there nonetheless, and we can fully appreciate them. We also remember that Jefferson and Adams died on the same day exactly fifty years later on July 4, 1826 in one of the most remarkable coincidences in world history. Or was there divine intervention? And we can’t overstate the courage of the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence that day. They quite literally risked their lives by doing so, and they did it for our country.
What happened 245 years ago today was just the beginning, obviously, but it was such an important beginning. The Declaration of Independence set the tone and laid the groundwork for what would become our Constitution. All the other greatness we’ve achieved since then – including the abolition of slavery via the Civil War, liberating the world of fascist tyranny in World War II, and making the world safe for democracy with the Cold War – were made possible by what happened on the Fourth of July in 1776. It’s the birthday of the greatest country our planet has ever seen, and it truly is a miracle.
#1: Because if we don’t celebrate the unique greatness of this nation, we will lose it.
Parker: At the risk of repeating what has already been committed to paper, we should and we must celebrate our nation’s independence. If not, we are guaranteed to lose it.
July 4th represents the very ideals that were worth fighting and dying for in 1776 and in every future conflict that has sent so many young men to their early deaths. No other country or governing body had ever committed to such a compromise between citizens and leaders. Even as the fledgling United States was discussing its top executive position, George Washington had to eschew royal titles and even the concept of a new monarchy. Human nature tends toward absolute power, and it was no different in the emancipated colonies. However, blessed with the knowledge of the past and forged with the moral virtues of Biblical wisdom, the Founders established something unique and magnificent.
The United States is not without its flaws. Forget the sins of the past like slavery – all nations had slavery. More pressing and concerning is that in modern times, we are faced with a bureaucratic establishment and unprecedented pulls toward one-party, authoritarian rule. Americans are still blessed with the most of anyone in history or present-day geography, but the inherent vices among mankind remains as strong as ever.
Our celebration of July 4th therefore serves as a powerful and annual reminder of what our predecessors escaped, what they dreamt to establish, and what we must preserve through similar historical knowledge, civic education, and duty to the ideals of both the hallowed Declaration of Independence and the mighty Constitution. Once the citizen class becomes ignorant of, or decides not to prioritize, God-given rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness – which is happening already – there is no saving us from inevitable tyranny.