GLOCCA MORRA, IRELAND (Wessays™) -- It’s a fictional place; it doesn’t exist. Kind of like the country whose 240th birthday we celebrated last night. What a wonderful place that would be, if only it were real.
July fourth marked the 240th anniversary of the adoption of our declaration of war against Britain. We call it the Declaration of Independence. But that’s not historically accurate. It’s government doublespeak for announcing our intention to throw the English out and start running our place ourselves.
But celebrate we do. And there’s none bigger or more flamboyant than the fireworks display on New York’s East River.
All those barges with all those fireworks!
Three hundred shells a second. Night becomes day lit by gargantuan sparklers. Thank you Macy’s. It was thrilling especially when accompanied by the West Point Band and Glee Club and surrounded by NBC’s variety show of such blinding glam you begin to believe you’re in a real place.
Here in Glocca Morra, at least we know we’re fictional.
To some, this celebration was something like the May Day parade at the Kremlin. Lot’s of flash as the empty missiles are rolled by to the cheers of the downtrodden.
A doddering TV Network gets together with a once great department store now edging toward insolvency to celebrate the birth of a once great nation that’s eating itself alive.
Not to demean the celebration. It could make the most cynical among us believe. Gets that feeling in your heart. That pride in your chest.
We celebrated our diversity. People from all walks of life went on camera every few minutes for two hours and told us how glad they are to be here. Sure they’re glad. It’s still a place where you can make your own way, make something of yourself. Make a pile of dough or whatever else it is you came here for.
But from the inside looking out, things could be better. We’re more racially divided than ever. We’re more oversensitive than ever. We’re more at odds with one another than ever.
That can do spirit for which we are rightfully famous is turning inward. We can’t agree on health care. We can’t agree on budget. We can’t agree on who we support or who we oppose.
We live in fear that the Russians will take us over. We live in fear that the tin wok dictator in North Korea will soon be able to nuke Kansas City by pushing a button in Pyongyang. Which will destroy us first, a rocket ship with a North Korean missile or a melting iceberg fueled by the exhaust fumes from your 1982 Plymouth K-car?
Neither will happen tomorrow. But what will happen tomorrow is a continuation of the stupid petty differences among us that raged on yesterday all the while as we talked about how 330-million of us present a united front and a will to compromise… a complete myth.
So it was nice to see J-Lo and Sheryl Crow and Brad Paisley and Lady Antebellum sing. And we enjoyed the chatter of those three people you never heard of and can’t pronounce from “America’s Ninja Warriors.”
But things ain’t great in Glocca Morra. And the only one who can do anything about that is… us. So we’d best make sure there still is an “us” to do it. And we’re now heading in the opposite direction.
I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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