Andrew Hamm: the Bipolar Express

Ruminations on theatre, music, and just about anything else that crosses my bipolar brain.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Pet Peeve #0704: "The Fourth of July."

The holiday is called Independence Day. It takes place on the date July 4.

We don't call Christmas "The Twenty-Fifth of December." (Not yet at least.) We don't call Thanksgiving "The Last Thursday in November," and I don't call my birthday "The Fifteenth of July."

Names are important. Calling Independence Day "The Fourth of July" passes over a chance to remember the brave, crazy, brilliant, flawed people who founded this great experiment we call America. For all the crappy things America and Americans have done, Independence Day is a moment to remember that the idea of a representative democratic republic was a pretty good one.

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  • At 7/02/2007 12:44 PM , Anonymous Philip Hamm said...

    Damn, you really get hung up on the most ridiculously inane minutia, don't you?

  • At 7/02/2007 7:42 PM , Blogger Frank Creasy said...

    Recently I was in a training class and playing the normal "trainer games" (I know the tricks of the trade after eight years as a training instructor), the instructor did a little "brain teaser" activity. It involved asking several questions, one of which was "Do they have a Fourth of July in England?" And of course, the answer is "yes". They just don't have an INDEPENDENCE DAY.

    The point is well taken Andrew, though for me, the key lesson is not so much "what's in a name" (why NOT put in a Shakespeare reference), it's keeping in the forefront of our collective consciousness the REASONS for the holidays. These include Memorial Day and Christmas and Independence Day. The latter is one of the happiest of our holidays, and the founding fathers even called for great joyous celebrations of the kind we still employ today. But I agree that behind this was tremendous sacrifice, risk, and passion for a way of life that truly DESERVES celebration. This week, let's take a moment to remember that.


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