04 July 2016

Independence Day Musings...
Welcome to the first Monday of July, and there is no better way to kick it off than with celebrating our freedoms and liberties, right? Well, I might have to weigh in on that a bit later on.
Our Hoosierland weather has been behaving itself where we are, but those of you farther south were greeted with rain yesterday.
We might get some today as well, but not enough to dampen the 4th's festivities.
The high today will top out around 80 degrees, and it looks to be a mostly cloudy day, with little breeze to speak of.
Other than that, it still might be a good day to grill something, should we get the urge. We will be flag-waving, too.
Now, let's get ourselves a nice cup of glass of morning freedom, as we see what's been going on elsewhere...
*** First off of the presses is our "What the hell happens today, Bob?" feature:
July 4 -
(not my personal favorite, but to each his/her own)
(like people were going to do anything ELSE with them?)
(and all that it REALLY signifies)
*** Next up, we've seen, heard, and read all the stories relating to fireworks SAFETY, right?
And, we've also dittoed all the ADS for all the stores having 4th of July SALES.
But, let's focus in on the fireworks, because a LOT of moolah will be tossed at making today more "festive" for some, and utterly annoying to many others.
Here's a good article in yesterday's J-G that gives us the skinny on personal pyrotechnics "by the numbers":
Americans spent around $755 MILLION bucks on fireworks JUST last year.
A couple mentioned in the article will spend between $700-$1200 on their "display" this year.
(don'cha think that money could be MUCH better used elsewhere? I think so)
Granted, they get together with others and blow the wad for a 30-minute "show".
Now, the price of some of these "higher-end" fireworks ain't cheap, people.
(we're not talking a box of sparklers)
The DIABLO ARTILLERY SHELLS (nice name) which burst about 100-150 feet and come in a 24 pack will run you about $109.99. Yes, that's OVER a hundred bucks.
A 9-pack of MIGRAINE shells (aptly named I might add), will cost you $99.99, and that also applies to Evil, Mean, Wicked, Nasty shells.
THESE are the items that will send the family pet seeking shelter in the nearest closet.
And, will cause combat vets to suffer flashbacks, like in this story:
In OUR neighborhood, they'd STEAL the damn sign!
It's interesting to note that two NFL players suffered career-changing injuries due to fireworks, and the first story mentions that. SO safety is not always first on the short list of things to do here.
Much much safer...by far.
I personally like my things that go "boom" to come from the muzzle of a firearm at some shooting range.
Those mortar shells don't need to be in the hands on the inexperienced.
Here's some info on related mayhem over the years from the NYT:
Appears we've had STUPIDITY as long as we've had fireworks (perhaps longer)...
Must be a correlation.
*** Next up, it's been a very long MONTH so far with all the fireworks being set off down here, make no mistake. I say month, because the morons started in early June.
Stupid is STILL not cool!
Those of you fortunate enough to have a few NORMAL people around you who DON'T start lighting such ordinance off way too soon should count your blessings.
Whenever I see the times when fireworks are ALLOWED in our city, I have to laugh, because too many people where we live have NO concept of time...or other people...or LAWS.
Maybe that's why we have the problems we do? Just a thought.
People down here have their own form of cultures, and it has little to do with what America stands for.
The ONLY word they hear is "freedom" and assume that to mean the freedom to do whatever the hell they damn well please. It's a little bit more "involved" than that, and if these cretins took some time from their busy, government-sponsored lives, they might LEARN what that means.
What's with the noise? I didn't do anything to THEM.
The city can pontificate all they want about consideration, being a good neighbor, obey the laws...doesn't mean a damn thing to these idiots, and THAT is why we enjoy the problems they've worked on for so long.
*** Next, what DOES it mean to BE AN AMERICAN?
Well, it seems to not mean what it USED to, but the core definition should still be alive to some degree.
Being American doesn't JUST mean you're free, because there are many levels OF freedom.
Plus, the cost for OUR particular freedom, as we have seen through numerous wars, is NEVER truly "free", is it?
We had people who sought to obtain the liberty they were being denied by a ruler across the ocean, and were willing to pledge all FOR that chance at freedom from such tyranny
Notice, it was a CHANCE at freedom...not a guarantee.
Today, we STILL follow that tenet - we offer ALL people who seek to be free that CHANCE...that OPPORTUNITY to have what they could not (elsewhere). That hasn't changed since this nation was a mere Pilgrim colony.
And, we have fought to preserve and protect that right to all men in THIS country.
THAT is why we remember what took place TODAY back in 1776.
Here's a refresher if you desire it:
Notice this is a day of DECLARATION, and doesn't pertain to our Constitution.
In the WIKI you'll find not only the background, but the various observances, customs and celebrations.
(bet the French wish they had it that good when they tried to emulate us)
Like most anything in life worth learning about, you HAVE to realize the CONTEXT in which our fight for independence was victorious over tyranny, and especially against the odds we faced from one of the world's MAJOR superpowers at that time in history.
If this doesn't provide some insight into what being an American is, than much of what we've done as a nation over time has meant little to nothing.
I prefer to think it meant so much more than we realize, or even stop to think about.
*** Last back to the library...We read that millennials are tepid when it comes to being a PROUD American.
That's a pretty sad commentary on our nation's people, but NOT on our nation, in spite of what liberals would prefer to do TO this country.
Small-town America STILL has the spark of patriotism in it, and much more than large cities have these days.
Sure, we might have some "activities" that bear the facade of a patriotic celebration, but I feel it's done more to make people FEEL they're patriotic when in fact, they lack that same spark we see in those small towns across this land.
People are too wrapped up in their own personal activities to TRULY acknowledge those who created this "great experiment" called AMERICA. And they also allow their freedoms and liberties to be taken away (incrementally) by those who would place security OVER freedom, even in times such as we see today.
Sure, I'm probably going to have a cookout today, but I am also taking time to play as much patriotic music as I can find. And, our flag is out and flying.
My Dad was big on this when he was alive. The 4th meant something to him (and Mom). And it was a much larger something than we see today.
Those who have fought and died to PROTECT our freedoms and liberties are WHY we should celebrate. It's not a time to show how STUPID you can act.
The REAL heroes are the ones who placed everything they were and had at risk to obtain the freedoms we all but take for granted nowadays.
The ones who love this nation, and know what today is really all about are the patriots of this country. And the rest of us would be hard-pressed to find a better people than they have been for us all.
Have a thought-provoking and enjoyable 4th.
Be well, make a difference to someone, and...
Stay SAFE out there, America.


CWMartin said...

I enjoy fireworks as much as the next guy, but I don't by them for exactly the reason Kermit brought up- it's money up in smoke, literally and figuratively. Did you read about the incident in Central Park? I haven't been updated since last night, but it sounded like they were leaning towards it being a fireworks incident and not a terrorist attack. Prolly be changed by the time I get to the news, though.

Hope you survive the bombardment. The trench line is a bit farther away from us, so nothing I can't live with.

Bob G. said...

---I'm all for watching the PROS do the pyrotechnic gig.
It's when numbnut yahoos TRY to think they can do likewise that bugs me, and that Kermit meme is PERFECT in many ways.
How the hell the locals around us go and spend HUNDREDS of dollars on this night after night eludes me (unless the SNAP programs now includes mortar rounds as a "food staple".
It's like taxpayer money "up in smoke" (as you wonderfully point out).
---That NYC Central park story doesn't feel right with me.
The person was just walking and stepped on a "firework"???
Sounds more like a BOOBY TRAP our troops would encounter (Bouncing Betty came to mind), and in today's world of terrorist activities, it would not surprise me one bit if THIS was just such an occurrence. These radical Jihadi-loving camel-jockeys are getting more blatant (and a bit creative).

---We'll hunker down and pull some real-estate over us for the duration TODAY. No Man's Land is everywhere outside the Fortress periphery...heh.
(it will no doubt continue well into NEXT week, and the FWPD will not do a damn thing to quell any of it.)

Thanks much for taking the time to drop by today and comment.

Stay safe up there, brother.