Independence Day!

Let’s appropriately start with the Pledge of Allegiance.

A serious moment from Nancy. The Gilchrists could do this type of thing well.

Now it’s time for a picnic and fireworks!

And one good Baldo deserves another! We never got anything more exciting than sparklers, regardless of what the neighbors got.

The Founding Fathers had to contend with a lot of logistic difficulties in declaring independence.

Let’s not forget, though, that the Founding Fathers were also quite interested in making a buck, and modern America continues that tradition!

But eventually the Founding Fathers brought their interests into harmony with each other.

But beyond commercialism and politics, there’s a country out there to treasure.

This land is your land and this land is my land
From the California to the New York island
From the redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me (Woody Guthrie)


  1. Perhaps it would not be inappropriate to offer a few words from the German national anthem for consideration in today’s America (apologies for the gender-specific adverb):

    Unity and Justice and Freedom … let us strive for all of these, brotherly with heart and hand!
    Unity and Justice and Freedom are the foundation of happiness… [let us] bloom in the glory of this happiness!

    P.S. I have of course carefully adjusted the translation to suit a foreign audience.

  2. An excellent, thoughtful montage for Independence Day!

    (But forgot to make fun of the movie so-titled.)

  3. Kilby and Andrea, I guess you’re aware how the current Supreme Court is backing a weakening of the Establishment Clause?

  4. I, too, liked it better when we in the US were one nation indivisible. Let people be what they will be, and let the rest of us be free to choose to join them or not.

  5. As a kid growing up here, I was instructed by my parents not to do the pledge of allegiance in school. It is rather scary, for a nation that practically dislocates its shoulder patting itself on the back as the bastion of “Freedom” (yet “where there’s never a boast or a brag!”), that not once that I recall in all of my public school career did I ever encounter an “educator” who had enough of a civics education themselves to allow this exercise of First Amendment rights to pass without comment or protest. I was ordered to conform, shamed, and when that didn’t work, thrown out of the classroom, sent to the principal’s office…

    “by their fruits ye shall know them…”

  6. I had the SAME experience . . . in sixth grade, I was not yet a US citizen and felt I did not have to do any pledging to any flag. Off to the principal’s office; call to parents; Mother came and explained my reasoning (I think); that was the end of that matter. Still never pledge allegiance to anything or anyone. Agnostic in religion and politics.

  7. I made my own version of the Pledge: I pledge allegiance to the Constitution of the United States of America, and to the Republic which it defines, one nation, under NOBODY, indivisible, with liberty, justice, and health care for all who can afford them.

  8. [sorry, the Holodeck CIDU post was not meant to be posted yet. My apologies to those who commented. Maybe it will preserve your comments into the actual publication next Monday.]

  9. The Pledge of Allegiance was written by a Socialist, Francis Bellamy, as part of a campaign by the Youth’s Companion magazine to make money by selling American flags to place in every high school classroom. The original version said “I pledge allegiance to my flag” but someone pointed out that little immigrant Italian boys and girls might have thought they were pledging allegiance to the flag of Italy.

  10. My sisters and I were only allowed sparklers also. Fireworks including sparklers were illegal here than – now apparently they are legal in some parts of NYS (aka upstate),but still not downstate where we are.

    My dad used to tell us that because he was an lawyer we could not have fireworks, just sparklers. Then my sister burned herself by touching the wrong end of a recently used sparkler, so sparklers were gone also. We would each get a metal hinge, a rubber band and some caps (as in a cap gun). We would put caps in the hinge, put the rubber band tightly around it and throw it at the ground. If done correctly the caps would go off – yippee. Repeat. Robert’s best friend/best man at our wedding had firecrackers seemingly all year when they were boys and I have heard many interesting stories which make me very glad that I got a husband with all of his digits and other parts (such as eyes) intact.

    “TV” has been nice in running some favorite movies on the holiday. Turner Classics had on “Yankee Doodle Dandy” early this afternoon followed by “1776”. What is interesting is that another channel we get (as part of the general cable package) which is called MOVIES (no frills title I guess) had the 2 movies on very early this morning and then again tonight in the same order. It is as if the two channels planned it (they might be related for all I know) so that they did not overlap the showings of the pair.

    Belated happy fourth!

  11. They have bamboo sparklers these days, I guess the support burns away. At any rate, no hot wire left.

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