Happy Belated Birthday America

I just have a couple of quick words to say about the Independence Day celebrations yesterday. First of all, I had no idea that Independence Day was such a dangerous holiday. Today, I think half of the local news was spent discussing all of the calamities caused by the Fourth of July. Two children drowned in local bodies of water. Another child was killed when his family’s homemade cannon malfunctioned and sent shrapnel into his side. There were at least 6 major fires in the Seattle area caused by fireworks. An explosion happened on a fireworks barge causing serious burns to a man. If we had any idea that celebrating our independence would be so deadly, maybe our Founding Fathers would have rethought this whole independence from Britian thing.

Secondly, although I appreciate the technological advances in fireworks spectaculars, I have to say, the show in Seattle had me thinking, huh? It was a Fourth of July celebration that wasn’t choreographed to patriotic music, but instead the theme music to Austin Powers, Queen, and Jimminy Cricket? I find patriotic music as annoying as the next guy, but is there any other day of the year when you can listen to “I’m Proud to Be an American” without fear of recrimination? Well, maybe at EFY dances when you are 14, according to my friend Brigham Bowen. In any case, if you aren’t going to stick to the parameters of music about America on the Fourth of July, then at least pick decent non-patriotic music. The best song of the night was after the show was over, they played Simon and Garfunkel’s “America.” See – you can have a song about America that isn’t annoying and xenophobic.

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