I Don't Think I'll Celebrate Independence Day This Year

I Don't Think I'll Celebrate Independence Day This Year

I don't feel proud to be an American.

When I was younger, Independence Day was my favorite holiday of the year. I loved everything about it. I’d ride my summer high, tan from the month of June and sweating out July, riding my bike around the neighborhood, eating grilled hot dogs and watermelon and potato salad. I remember celebrating my grandmother’s birthday the day before. They called her the "firecracker that went off early". Lighting fireworks had been the best part. I remember when we went to Colorado one summer and my dad and my grandpa bought fireworks in Wyoming. Tons of fireworks: jumping jacks, bottle rockets, firecrackers, Saturn missiles. We’d watch the fireworks in my hometown in Kenosha. Half the town would gather by the Lake Michigan Beaches, spread out their blankets and towels and wait until dusk for the fireworks display. I remember playing at the park by the beach with my sister, our shoes filled with sand. We stood on the highest part of the playground we called the "bird’s nest" and watched the colorful display of red, white and blue.

I think I loved Independence Day because at the time, I could relate it to my own independence of my childhood. My own naivety of what the holiday meant.

When we’re young we’re fed this garbage of what it means to be patriotic and that it’s our duty as true American citizens to respect our country that has done so much for us. We should be proud to be an American. We should be blessed for the opportunities we have compared to other countries. I’m sorry, but where are these opportunities? What am I blessed for? We have people in this country who can't afford higher education or health care because they're working three part-time jobs to make ends meet. We have people afraid that they won't be allowed back into the country because of their religion. We have people who are afraid to get pulled over by a police officer only to get shot. We have people who have to hide their sexuality or gender identity because some businesses can refuse to hire them. But it’s like, if I don’t wear the American flag proudly on my body, I’m just not loving this country enough.

Let’s be honest. America has never been free for everyone. We pushed this propaganda on other countries proving we were strong and awesome and great. We would spread our bald eagle wings all across the world with our imperialism claiming we’re fantastic and you should totally be happy we’re taking over your country and crushing your culture because ours is better, you know it’s better. It is better. Don't deny it or we'll kill you. Then at the same time, we wondered why so many immigrants are coming to this country of all places. Now they’re bringing their non-american traditions and we can’t have that. We Americanized immigrants. How creepy is that? We had these ideas of what America was and honestly if it wasn’t the White Anglo-Saxon Protestant image, I don’t know what it was then. Or what people think it is now. I have a really hard time celebrating the birth of a nation built on genocide and slavery.If I'm so blessed, then please explain why people who are American citizens have to be stopped because they look like they might be an illegal immigrant?. And why do poor people get denied good education, decent food, good health care? And why a country that’s so free has the largest number of people incarcerated in federal prison compared to any other country?

The older I get, the more I dislike this holiday. The more I realize, you know what, I could have barbeque and light fireworks any other time of the year and I’ll probably enjoy it more. Just kidding, our country is so free that there’s states where it’s illegal to buy fireworks and illegal in most places to shoot them off. So much for that.

This year is probably the most negative I’ve ever felt about this country. I don’t even know if I want to observe this holiday this year. Or should this year's independence day be a day of mourning for a country that’s gone down the drain. I don’t really mean just because of this election, but the slow burning dumpster fire that america has been going throw. I’ll say this a million times, but I feel like a roman watching the fall of the roman empire and all I can say to that is, “Happy Independence Day. This might be our last one.”

Cover Image Credit: pexels

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.

Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.

7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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There Is So Much Beauty In The Fourth Of July Despite The Blazing Hot Temperatures

Because what other time could you be sweating from every pore in your body but still be having a good time?


July fourth is arguably one of the hottest and most American holidays there is. Families and friends come together to celebrate the day of the United States' independence. The whole town comes out to the same place, at the same time, to sit in the burning hot sun and watch the commencement of the celebration parade.

Old cars drive through, fire trucks and police cars blare their sirens, pageant princesses and little misses wave from their glorious floats, high school bands play with the sunlight gleaming off their instruments, and horses prance through the street.

Even with so many amazing things going by, everyone's attention is always on something else. Retired veterans from every branch of the military drive or walk by, proudly wearing their hats and waving at everyone they pass. These are the people that you're going to want to pay attention to, out of respect if nothing else.

Just about every other car throws out candy and little kids scramble to get some before it disappears. It's a race to get the most and the best pieces. Clearly, this is the highlight of their morning and it keeps them quiet until siblings start fighting over who got what. Although by the end of the day, all you've got is hard bubble gum and partially unwrapped dum-dums.

Once the last sirens die out the majority of the crowd begins to trickle away. Some go to the pool or the beach and get a tan, and others take it easy all day, but most will be grilling out on this night. Hot dogs, hamburgers, and apple pie are served and the adults kick back with a beer to watch the children play and run around in their red, white, and blue outfits.

Chances are the local park will hold family-friendly festivities that evening, including face painting and sketchy amusement rides. People are posing for pictures at every turn and the sound of overlapping chatter and laughing never dies down.

As the temperature begins to drop a couple degrees kids and adults alike light up sparklers and draw pictures or words in the air, creating fairytale-like memories that will carry on anytime you think of the Fourth of July.

Finally, when dusk starts to settle in it is time for the long-awaited fireworks. The best spots in town fill up within in minutes to watch the show, but really it's pretty good from nearly anywhere you choose. Family pets are hurried inside to avoid any mishaps or runways and then the sky lights up with beautiful colors and designs.

The last fireworks are always the best because the town always makes sure to have a very grand finale. By the time they end, it's late at night and everyone is tired but in a good way. Some people might be sunburnt and some might be getting a tad grumpy, yet no one seems to really care that much. It ends up to be a great day had by all, and hopefully, nobody forgets the true meaning and importance of this summer holiday.

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