This 4th of July Celebrate Yourself, Not America
JIM BEHRLE
11725

You make a good point that our manifest destiny has become inertia. We are an ossified polity trapped with a frozen republic, under a set of Constitutional institutions that have delivered the abhorrent mess of a federal government that we’re now living with, incapable of envisioning the sort of revolutionary change that that would benefit the majority of Americans even at the expense of the wealthiest because we are incapable of coming to a viable consensus on what change should look like. I’d be with you on the idea of celebrating Americans if we were predisposed to acting like a coherent nation, but we’re all too divided now, if not on class lines or racial lines then on the division between urban and rural America. In these terms, maybe we are coming closer to the moment when we should start determining the appropriate terms for a civil divorce rather than the messy abortion of an attempt at separation that we endured in the middle of the Nineteenth century. Minimally, if our shared history and the realization that over two hundred years as an experiment in representative democracy within and across an amazingly diverse and unwieldy populace means something, then maybe we will all find ourselves coming to some amicable compromise on our collective futures that honors the reasons for commemorating Independence day to begin with.

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