Pleading the Fifth, on the Fourth

"Happy 4th of July."

What does that mean? The phrase comes easily but holds very little meaning when said in modern times I think. What makes it different from any other holiday? It would be beneficial to revisit the history books and evaluate how we are continuing to keep this country great, and our freedoms and independence intact.

Other than the armed forces I'd argue we are not doing enough as citizens. I recently read a great piece by Dan Pearce (of the blog Single Dad Laughing), America & My Struggle to Feel Proud, and it struck a nerve and also helped ease my guilt on the subject.

My version of the story is somewhat different as I haven't lived in the USA for the past twenty-seven years, but my love of home never dissipated. The majority of my family work and live in the USA. I have grown sad and felt kind of helpless with regards to what's happening, and how the USA is being run.
The recent situations with Edward Snowden and Bradley Manning, with the global coverage are both shocking and an embarrassment. Yet not one the government seems all that quick to address. If anything they seem to be happy dealing with it wearing clown shoes. My views are somewhat without education and evidence, but also free from internal bias and propaganda. Being on the outside gives you a much different perspective on things.

It was far easier to be ignorant and blind to issues and policies, it made being patriotic so much easier. "Why do I love the USA? It's the freakin' USA buddy THAT'S WHY!" That was a perfectly acceptable answer in the past. Not so sure it holds weight now.

I can't say anything better than what's been said in Dan's article so please go and read that. He feels his post was a risk, and I applaud him for his words and honesty. He is not alone. Let's not leave him fighting the good fight without all of our support.

We the people can do better, can be better. It's our country, we lost it to the un-chosen few at some point and need to take it back. Believe it or not they need us more than we need them.

I'm not suggesting we focus on the bad, we should celebrate the good but be mindful that we are not done. So yeah, enjoy the fireworks and time with family and friends, but let's all strive to make the USA live up to it's long standing reputation. Having the bigger stick is a must, flag waving is fine, I just want the pride back that goes along with those things. Peace.