I have such mixed feelings about the Fourth of July. On one hand, I know I am incredibly lucky to have been born where and when I was, into so much privilege of every kind that I take for granted every day. I also believe in the ideals that the U.S. was founded on.
But I also think that this country has failed to live up to those ideals in really significant ways, and I am downright ashamed of much of what our government does, particularly in the international arena. I'm definitely not a "my country, right or wrong" kind of person and on days like today, with everybody waving their flags, I sometimes feel like I'm the only one, even though I know I'm not.
I wish more Americans would use this day as an opportunity to celebrate what we're doing that's good, to reflect on what we're doing that's not, and to think about ways we can change for the better. But I'm enough of a cynic to believe that that'll never happen, and enough of a hypocrite that I'm going to spend my day eating barbecue and swimming in the pool. :\
...and now back to your regularly-scheduled programming.