Many people in the United States are celebrating Independence Day today. My family will be having a dinner later this evening but that is all.
Lots of folks will be going to see fireworks displays or setting off fireworks themselves. A lot of folks especially younger ones probably see this holiday as just an excuse to party. Some remember that it is to celebrate our country becoming Independent.
For some reason the holiday caused me to think about what independence is.
It seems to me that no country in the world these days is or really can be totally independent. There is too much trade and travel and everyone knows what’s going on just about everywhere these days.
Something happens in Egypt or China and shortly after it is on the news, or on Twitter and the whole world reacting to it.
And in just this country folks are not really independent these days. Young people are depending on parents far longer than they used to. Many are having to live with parents till long after they finish schooling.
Older folks are dependent on their children too. Sometimes for shelter and often for other sorts of care.
That may be a good thing. Not too long ago extended families lived together or close by and everyone helped each other. If that sort of thing came back it might make things easier on lots of families.
The main celebration today though is of the freedom to govern ourselves. Lots of us these days don’t exercise that freedom. We celebrate independence day but don’t go out to vote. Not even in local elections that directly effect us and our families.
So are we really Independent? Maybe not but I’d rather have the right and not use it than not have the right at all.
You also have the right to be safe in your communities. I hope you all exercise that right today. Especially if you are around fireworks.
No one can make you be careful if you choose not to.