Independence Day 2020




In this country, the United States of America, July the 4th is a day of celebration, of commemoration. Of reverence and contemplation.


This day, let us reflect on a piece of cloth, and what it means.


May we remember the fallen. Honor the thousands and thousands whose lives have been sacrificed. And let us reflect on our own lives, and how they have been affected by the strong beliefs and resolute actions of other men and women.


The leaders who lead by example.


The followers, resolute in their conviction that they represent “We, the people.”


They who declare that they are fighting for all of us, for our rights, for our own personal freedoms. They refuse to capitulate, to surrender to authority.


Loudly they declare their independence, they rally in large numbers to fight the powers that be. They defy the experts, in loud voices call out lies and conspiracies. They will not be quieted, nor dismissed. They are not anonymous; they insist that their voices be heard, and their faces seen.


Hand in hand, they are united in the face of opposition. In return, they stand stubbornly in opposition of convention and logic.


A simple piece of cloth is worth dying over. And killing for.


Convinced of this, they will fly the red, white, and blue flag while flying in the face of common sense.


Their righteous indignation flares. They woke up in a free country. Last they checked, they had rights. Personal freedoms that are being attacked. They will not stand for that.


Shout at them, and they will shout louder. Appeal to reason, and they will discredit and ridicule. They shall not be swayed. They staunchly refuse to do the asked. Do the simple. They encourage and incite others to join in their refusal, their revolt. The numbers have grown due to their efforts.


A piece of cloth means life or death. They have chosen death. They deny that piece of cloth. Refuse to wear it to cover their nose and mouth to protect others. To protect us.


Today we might reflect: Where would we be without these men and women?


We might be watching fireworks. Eating hot dogs. Drinking beer shoulder to shoulder with our friends and compatriots.


We might be visiting the elderly. Hugging our parents instead of eulogizing them.


We might be on the other side of a pandemic, rather than continuing our steady ascent of a tragic peak, height yet unknown.


You and I could be eagerly anticipating future days, rather than dreading them.


But thanks to these people, the ones who fight, we are here. Prisoners in our own homes.


So, this is what independence feels like.