Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Stars, Stripes and Essence

Symbol - 1. Something that stands for or suggests something else by reason of relationship, association, convention, or accidental resemblance. 2. An object or act representing something in the unconscious mind. 3. An act, sound, or object having cultural significance and the capacity to excite or objectify a response.

Declaration of Indepence by John Trumbull

US Capitol Rotunda

Tomorrow flags will be waving and red, white and blue clothing will be the norm. Parades will be marching, watermelon will be sliced, fireworks will fulfill the measure of their creation and stressed Americans will revel in a day away from the workplace.

I can't help but wonder what a state our nation would be in if each of her citizens internalized the meaning behind the symbols of the stars and stripes,.. to be as inwardly American 365 days a year as we are outwardly on one.

I'm sure it's been going on since the dawn of our nation, but I seem to notice more UNcivil disobedience lately. News coverage of crime and even small town instances of petty theft and destruction are more prevalent. The attitude sometimes seems to be "I will do these things "because I can". And, this makes me think two things. 1. Thank goodness you can, because I have no interest in living in a society where law enforcement outnumbers regular citizens and 2. You're a bozo and are going to ruin that system.

Living in a free society means bearing the responsibility of living responsible lives. To me, the real essence of being an American is to live a good life. Basic? Yes. Why? Because we end up with fewer laws that way. New laws emerge when some element of human decency is interpreted as being bridged.

It's sometimes easy to view the government as a thing rather than a product of the people. But, it is true that our government is a product of the citizenry. We elect decision makers on a local, state and federal level. You cannot remove yourself from the election process or following what laws and statutes (or local ordinances) are being considered and then complain.

The 4th of July commemorates:
1. Independence from an oppressive government
2. Freedom to struggle and implement a divinely inspired framework of rule
3. Creation of a system whereby men are free to choose their path and talent and drive are the keys to future progression rather than caste.

In order to continue to have something to celebrate, we each need to "be good". Is that so hard?

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