I think I mentioned we are taking a class on forgotten US presidents at Northwestern this summer. And an interesting side affect of the information we are getting in the class is a greater understanding that our situation these days politically is really not new - there have been other periods of great divisiveness (is that a word?) in our history and it has given me better perspective on the whole awful mess we have for politicians and political parties today.
so maybe things are not as broken as we think they are and so let's celebrate America's birthday with pride in the good things and hope that over time we become a more tolerant society - generous of spirit where people really get the concept of united we stand... we are a country of vast wealth and resources - we really CAN afford to take care of our own -
this small excerpt comes from NYT column that makes a similar point:
Given the nature of our founding and the documents that created this country, we seem destined to quarrel endlessly about who we are and who we’re supposed to be. This sounds like a flaw, but, in fact, it’s a peculiarly American virtue. Our history may read like a narrative, but it’s really a debate, sometimes bloody, usually peaceful, but always unresolved. We remain divided on nearly all the major elements of our constitution: the role of religion, the balance between federal and state authority, the risks and consequences of unlimited opportunity, the boundary between self-reliance and shared responsibility.
so maybe we still have hope that "the better angels of our nature" will prevail and we can come to some consensus on how provide the American dream for one and all and truly make this the land of opportunity.
and in celebration of the day - we went to friends for an annual picnic/BBQ and fireworks viewing... just like John Adams said we would all those years ago...
"It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of
Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with
Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of
this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more."
so just a few photos from the dessert table- the lovely young women who are the daughters of our friends really outdid themselves in the cake baking department for the celebration- thank you Carol and Ali for your wonderful spirited efforts for our enjoyment on the celebration of the USA birthday!
so back to class today in nearly 100* heat... thinking about the "founding fathers" in Philly in the summer - and feeling blessed for their efforts on our behalf.