The values and ideals embraced by the U.S. stand apart as an ongoing experiment. No other body of people has tried it, which makes this nation unique. The real question is: can we collectively make it work better and better across time, particularly as we continue to grow in size, scope and diversity; or will it ultimately collapse and become a failed experiment?
I say the 4th of July is about celebrating the novelty and nobility of this experiment, both as it exists, and also the promise it still holds.
Celebrating yourself is just plain narcissistic — you alone could never have made it possible for this experiment to exist, let alone succeed.
Just because you’re not proud of America at the moment doesn’t mean you can’t proud of what this experiment represents, even in the face of sometimes daunting odds.
In this sense, the 4th of July represents a bold adventure. As is true with any experiment, it comes with trials and tribulations.