Friday, July 4, 2008

Red, White, & Blue Jurl

Happy Independence Day, Jurls. Today may you not think about the calories or contents of the multiple hot dogs you ingest, may your ice cream be cold and your potato salad poison-free, may you taste too sour for the mosquitoes to bother with, may your children have other children to run around and play with leaving them all too exhausted to pester you, may you enjoy a classic 4th of July movie aka Jaws, may your have thirty minutes to yourself (perhaps to paint your toe nails in a patriotic theme) and may your fireworks be explosive (and your family be without explosive diarrhea unlike mine).

Most importantly, today of all days, may you revel in the love of family and friends and give thanks for all that Independence Day means. Though our country is not perfect, just as the human beings that make up this quirky nation are not perfect, there is much to be grateful for despite your political party, environmental concerns, constipation, economic situation, romantic state, disappointment in government officials, the calorie content of french fries, or a bajillion other things to gripe or worry about.

There is a richness of character that defines America and Americans and I love my country even as I recognize it's failings, so here is a little history lesson jurl-style to remind us of our greatness.

1607- People looking for freedom risked everything to set up a brave new world in a strange new land (yes, we eventually wiped out the Indians even after they had dinner with us, but that's not what 4th of July is about, so move on).

1775- Early Americans fought a war to gain freedom from the tax-crazy Brits (no offense to Great Britain, but you lost, suckas!.)

1861-Abraham Lincoln along with countless others demanded freedom for all Americans, not just whitey.

1917- The U.S enters WWI on the side of right and helps defeat the bad guys.

1920- Women in corsets and petticoats fought for the right to vote (then those crazy female voters took away alcohol, but came to their senses and brought it back).

1929- The stock market died, but the country survived.

1941- U.S. declares war and its citizens joined together at home and in the theatre of war to fight one of the greatest evils of the modern age.

1950s-Rock n'Roll made us a little less dorky.

1957- Little Rock school desegregates because separate is never equal.

1960s- Fight for civil rights continues cause Lincoln only got it half right.

1963- Martin Luther King has a dream.

1969- We take a trip to the moon to see what's shakin up there.

1970s- Bras(and dinners) get burned as women declare "I am woman and will kick your ass!" (also a love affair with harvest gold and guacamole green erupts).

1980s- The microwave is invented changing how we bake potatoes for all time, pastel colors, Madonna, and should pads spruce things up.

9/11/01- Our nation unites in the face of great tragedy resulting in acts of great bravery, compassion, and generosity

2005- Though government makes mistakes in aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, U.S. citizens give food, clothing, money, and time to help those in dire need.

You have 364 days to blame the government for all the wrongs in our world and to point out every wart on the historic face of the U.S., but not today. Today remember the very real individuals that have fought for freedom- freedom of religion, freedom from tyranny, freedom from slavery, and freedom from oppression. Everyday the luxury of freedom must be guarded and advanced, but today we celebrate how far we have come since those old white dudes said "No mas! We'll put a musket up your ass, limey. We declare that we are free!"

So many have sacrificed so much to make it a little easier, a little better for all of us, so eat a hot dog and give a prayer of thanks.

Peace out, jurls.


Beverly said...

Very well put, Jurl!

Lawmom said...

Read this to my kids, with a little editing. You had a typo of the century round about desegregation and after the popular world war, but we worked with it. Awesome history lesson, jurl.

Claudia said...

Great post! I'm proud to be a (naturalized) citizen of this country!!