Independence Day

Social IssuesCulture

  • Author Terrance Macearlyn O'dhomnaill
  • Published August 6, 2022
  • Word count 1,724

Independence Day

What does Independence Day mean to everyone? Having traveled around the world and participated, to a degree, in other countries celebrations of their Independence Day, it can mean something different in every country. The last one I remember was in Afghanistan in 2002. Afghans celebrate Independence Day to commemorate their defeat of the Russians. To them, that is Independence Day. Defeating the mighty Russian Army. Of course, they fail to mention how much help they got from other countries, most notably the United States.

Canada also has an Independence Day too. They call it Canada Day and is celebrated on July 1st. This is the day when Canada became a self-governing British Province in 1867 and became fully independent in 1982. Mexico also has an Independence Day, September 16th, 1810 to commemorate when Mexico declared its independence from Spain.

As everyone around the world knows by now, the American Independence Day is July 4th, 1776 when they published their declaration of Independence from Great Britain. So, what does Independence Day mean to the average American in this day and age? For a lot of people, it is a day off, a federal holiday with BBQ’s and other family activities. Fireworks in the evening of July 4th and similar activities. Most folks don’t consider the history other than what they learn in school and the constant reminders in all of the advertising from the retailers before and during the holiday. Much like Christmas. The meaning is largely lost due to all of the commercialization leading up to and into the week after.

So, what does Independence Day mean to me? I never considered myself much of a patriot. I used the military as a way to successfully run away from home with a way to support myself in the process. After staying for a while, I started considering myself as a mercenary. A paid career soldier for hire to the government. As long as they kept asking me to sign another contract, I was good to go until they decided they didn’t need me anymore after I returned home in late 1992 after 2 years in the middle east. I had to fight just to be allowed to transfer into a reserve unit. So much for loyalty.

I have taken the time to accomplish a lot of reading lately to figure out just what Independence Day means to me. I have read so much of late about the ramifications of slavery in the America’s back then and effects it is still having now, the damage done to the indigenous peoples who were living in the American continents before the Europeans showed up and their quest to kill them all in their greedy quest for world dominance. I am reading about all of the strife going on in the America’s right now over who is going to be top dog in these different countries. This includes all of North and Central America at this point and some places in South America. Independence Day in the US is meant only for the descendants of the original English colonizers so they can celebrate their independence from King George. All of these English colonists had a big hand in destroying the continents they invaded and now, have the audacity to celebrate all of the genocide and misery they caused in their quest for power.

My countrymen and ancestors came to North America to escape the atrocities being committed on them by the English government. When a lot of them arrived, they were spit on, tromped on and generally made to feel very unwelcome by the descendants of these English colonists. They had to fight for everything they could to make their way in the new world and a lot of them were successful. My direct ancestors included. Over time, these prejudices were repointed in different directions, mostly towards the former slaves and their descendants. Between the abuse of what is left of the native Americans and the descendants of the former slaves, it is hard to tell which group is being punished the most just for still being alive in a country where they are largely not welcome by the English descendants. Not for lack of trying. The former slaves were not here voluntarily and the native Americans were here before any colonists but that doesn’t mean a thing. It’s all about subjugation. The English subjugated these peoples and are still trying to do so now.

Then there are the other immigrants from around the world. These same English descendants want to subjugate them as well in their own way in these modern times. Look what they did to the Chinese in the 19th and 20th centuries, the descendants of Japanese immigrants in the beginning of WWII. Look at what they are still doing to Muslim immigrants since 9/11. Not to mention the Latinos coming from central and south America trying to escape the really bad conditions in those countries.

So, what is there to celebrate? This so called, independence that is celebrated is just for the descendants of the English colonists, most notably the English landowners who came to North America to make themselves rich at everyone else’s expense. This independence from England was just a way for them to get richer without having to pay more taxes to someone across the ocean. Call it a cost-of-living adjustment. Why pay taxes to the English government when they could fight to keep all that money at home. The ones who suffered the most for that war were the poor indentured servants and farmers who were paying taxes to the rich landowners for the privilege of living there. These were the foot soldiers. The ones who bled and died for this independence. What did they gain from all of that? Very little. The rich just kept more of their money here in the Americas. Nothing much has changed in the US in 246 years of independence.

Nothing has changed much in all of the Americas in the last 400 years. The rich are still getting richer at the poor people’s expense. The immigrants and descendants of the original freed slaves are still fighting against extreme prejudice as are the descendants of the conquered native Americans, and any other immigrants that aren’t like the descendants of the English colonists.

There is a growing unrest in North America towards the rich people now. They aren’t called plantation owners anymore but corporate leaders. Ceo’s Cio’s and whatever else. The name is different but the mentality is still the same. Get richer at everyone else’s expense. Those that aren’t getting a chunk of that money are getting poorer by the year and starting to make a lot of noise. Because of that noise, the rich people, the ones who got themselves elected to be in charge of the governments, are fighting back with legislative restrictions on civil rights and other things.

The American “Founding Fathers” were all, for the most part, plantation owners who owned slaves or major business owners in the colony that practiced indentured servitude. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and many, many others, especially those from the southern colonies were plantation owners with slaves. Some discovered the error of their ways and changed but most did not until many years and another generation later. These founding fathers were also responsible for promoting genocide towards native American tribes who stood in their way towards expanding the new country westward.

As a descendant of immigrants who were severely persecuted in their homeland, who immigrated to North America thinking they could escape the English yoke, only to find out that it was also happening in the new world, I don’t see much to celebrate on Independence Day. Right now, all I see is a lot of angry people making a lot of noise about their civil rights being taken away from them by their state and federal governments but not exercising their right to vote against these restrictions, not yet anyway. It doesn’t look good for them as it is likely to late now. The government leaders are doing all they can to suppress that right as well. The United States is starting to look like they are going back in time to when the colonies still belonged to a monarchy. Maybe they are jealous of all of the media attention the English monarchy gets all of the time and want a monarchy for themselves. Maybe that is what the spoiled Americans want, someone to take charge and give them the same freedoms they have taken for granted all this time. No extra work involved. Let them just carry on with their daily lives without any government or economic worries. I have news for them. Life doesn’t work that way. History predicts what will happen if they lose their current form of government to a single entity and it never ends well.

Mitt Romney, an American senator from Utah, who is a moderate conservative republican, wrote an article for The Atlantic titled America is in Denial. He is right. Americans are in denial about what is going on around them as long as it doesn’t affect their daily lives. Not enough of them feel the pain of the anti-abortion laws to want to do anything more than make some noise. Not enough of them are willing to stand up to their legislative leaders and demand change. Now it may be too late for them. He talks about how certain events in US history opened the citizens eyes and galvanized them into cooperative action. Pearl Harbor and 9/11 are the most famous. Is that what it will take, another 9/11 to wake enough of them up? Even he admits that something like that won’t be enough anymore. It will take a very charismatic leader of the right kind to bring everyone together but, as I mentioned in an earlier piece, there are none to be found right now.

I am like a lot of people in North America right now, watching the news extensively and making plans to do what is necessary to protect my family should the current style of government go from a democracy to authoritarian. I am a soldier for life and I am making my battle plans in case I need them.

I am a retired Army veteran, and a semi-retired IT technician. I am not of the Christian, Jewish or Muslim faiths and I have been publishing my originally written articles on my website at https://527.websitex5.me. I am providing my most recent article here to see if it meets the standards of original writing and see if there is any interest. I typically write one or two pieces a week for my website keeping up with the times as they are. Whenever I do post an new blog article, I list it on Facebook.

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