In the past week, my social media feeds have been filled up with posts of similar content. “I refuse to celebrate The Fourth of July this year.” “I don’t wanna see any American flags waving this weekend.” “F**k your Fourth of July.” The message is truly driven home with a single quote, “The Fourth of July is cancelled.”
I love my country. I am proud of my country. I do not demand that others display the same level of pride as I, just as I hope those who lack that pride do not demand that my avid patriotism weaken to meet theirs. Being proud of America does not mean I will blindly defend her regardless of her actions. I am extremely critical of our government, probably more often than not.
The Fourth of July is not a celebration of our government. It is not a celebration of each and every detail of our history. It isn’t even a celebration of drinking beer and eating hot dogs.
The Fourth of July is a celebration of our independence, and the installation of a set of rights that have the goal of giving every man, woman, and child the opportunity to maximize the potential time they spend on Earth. It is a celebration of independence from the tyrannical government that violated our rights. It is a celebration of the extension of unalienable rights, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, to every citizen of our Nation. It is a celebration of each and every citizen, past, present, and future.
Our country has done some terrible things at the expense of our own citizens. Africans were brought here against their will to live in conditions we would wish upon no one. Asian Americans were put into internment camps simply because of their race. Jewish and Muslim Americans, even today, are the victims of persecution as a result of their religion.
I could go on for pages.
No sane person is proud of these things. We do not celebrate these atrocities, but we do not forget them either. Instead, we celebrate our movement past these violations. We celebrate the great things we have done in spite of these violations. We celebrate our progress and those who fought to get us to where we are today.
Progress within our country has extended the rights outlined in our Constitution to apply to every single citizen, as they should be. This progress would not have happened at the rate it has, or even at all, if not for the values instituted by our Founders.
Our Founders had the incredible foresight to create a political system that is still pushing us through more and more progress in our society 243 years later. As a result of our focus on outlining specific citizens’ rights rather than the government’s rights, we are given the tools to push ourselves to be a society that is truly free and fair for all.
In our current time of disarray, many within this country have lost faith in our foundational values. Many hold the opinion that, in light of many citizens’ dissatisfaction with the current state of The Union, our country’s values are not fulfilling what they were intended to, and, therefore, should not be celebrated.
The goal of this article is not to discredit your opinion if you are of this mind. The goal was to bring some understanding of why many of us feel the desire and the need to celebrate our great Nation on her Independence Day.
A time of distress within our nation leaves even more reason to celebrate all we have accomplished. Coming together to celebrate all we have done, and all that we will do is a tremendous show of unity.
The Fourth of July is one of the few holidays that we celebrate in America that is not exclusionary. It is a holiday that every citizen is recognized by and has the ability to celebrate.
If you choose to celebrate our country this Saturday, I will be alongside you. If you choose not to celebrate by my side, I disagree with you, but I, and this country, will defend your right to abstain so long as it stands. This country does not command your appreciation, and, because it does not command it, it deserves it.
In honor of our country’s victories, and in spite of her shortcomings, I choose to celebrate the values that this country was founded upon, and the pursuit of extending and upholding those values for the sake of each and every citizen within our borders.
Happy Fourth of July and God Bless the USA.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.