Happy Independence Day USA!
July 3, 2002 8:58 PM   Subscribe

Happy Independence Day USA! Celebrate it by asserting your independence. Regardless of any of our multifarious differences, Americans live in a country where it is legal to disagree and dissent. In fact, by simple dint of being Americans we each by default, protect each other's rights to disagree. For without free dialogue we cease to be American at all. So without further ado. Let's celebrate our freedom!
posted by crasspastor (35 comments total)
 
Getting a BJ from your wife would be a great way to celebrate July 4th! Except that it's illegal in 18 states. So much for freedom of for the most private of acts.

Assert your independence! Wear Nike!
posted by five fresh fish at 10:03 PM on July 3, 2002


"Getting a BJ from your wife"

This is where I stopped (at first). I thought, now what exactly does that have to do with July 4th? I tried to think of something, maybe like "Get on all fours for the fourth!" or something like that, but it just wasn't clicking (until I read ahead).

I'm glad that you all are free to brand me an (sometimes insane) idiot, but not free to actually brand me for those opinions, if you know what I mean. I'm certainly more free (in some ways) than fellow Daytonian Clement Vallandigham was during his lifetime. Things can improve.

Happy 4th.
posted by insomnyuk at 10:57 PM on July 3, 2002


Happy Birthday, America! And best wishes to my fellow Americans, including those "Americans in spirit" around the world (looks towards Norway). Sexual favors are a wonderful way to celebrate, but first you've gotta fire up the BBQ and munch on that most American of all foods (critics be damned!): BURGERS!
posted by davidmsc at 11:01 PM on July 3, 2002


Last year I would have agreed with you about the freedom to disagree and dissent. Now... now I have my reservations about the guarantee on our freedom.

Regardless --- last night I had my own bit of Americana Ironic stage theater across the street: My neighbor's kids lit their flag on fire with a bottle rocket. Much hilarity ensued.
posted by nathan_teske at 11:10 PM on July 3, 2002


In order not to take up a FPP (thank G*d I have the freedom to use that expression), I'll just note here that the National Archives has apparently updated for the occasion and made available (today, as far as I can tell) a very-high resolution image of the original Declaration of Independence. (Warning - VERY large download.)

It's weathered a bit, but the sentiment is still strong.

Happy birthday to the United States of America. I love this country. I really do.
posted by yhbc at 11:17 PM on July 3, 2002


Oh yeah, I'm going to spend my time partaking in two time-honored american traditions: eating red meat and blowin' shit up. Thanks for reminding me david.

In case anyone is wondering, that declaration image is 9.6 megabytes, jpeg format.
posted by insomnyuk at 11:28 PM on July 3, 2002


Sorry insomnyuk, maybe I should have said RIDICULOUSLY large download. (full disclosure - I didn't wait for the whole thing to download the first time, either).

Enjoy your burgers and bangers. I know I will.
posted by yhbc at 11:39 PM on July 3, 2002


What are some of the freedoms Americans have that people don't have in Canada, for example, or in Australia or the UK or France or Germany? Miguel, what are the things you are not allowed to do in Portugal that Americans can do in the US? Besides taking the 4th off work, I mean.
posted by pracowity at 11:55 PM on July 3, 2002


two time-honored american traditions: eating red meat and blowin' shit up
Slam 'em all you like, they do us just fine. The only thing better would be exploding hamburgers...

But I've said too much. "Quick, call the patent lawyer!"

Seriously, I do love the Fourth, and I'm glad people aren't letting terror keep us down: "I’m not going to hide in my own country"
posted by owillis at 12:10 AM on July 4, 2002


What are some of the freedoms Americans have that people don't have in Canada, for example, or in Australia or the UK or France or Germany?

Pushing to the front of queues. Big no-no in the UK. Not that you'd get much more than a good, hard stare for it.
posted by vbfg at 12:12 AM on July 4, 2002


What are some of the freedoms Americans have that people don't have in Canada, for example, or in Australia or the UK or France or Germany?

More property rights (see Amendments, 2nd). But July 4 is in celebration of the principles on which this country was founded, whether or not the country is following them is an added bonus, nowadays.
posted by insomnyuk at 12:14 AM on July 4, 2002


What are some of the freedoms Americans have that people don't have in Canada, for example, or in Australia or the UK or France or Germany?

Here in Japan, you are not entitled to a jury trial and they can hold you for about a month without charges (not that I have ever experienced it).

There is also no direct election of the Prime Minister, the majority-winning party gets to choose. One party has been in the lead continuously since 1955, however (thank you very much, CIA election-meddlers).

Also, there is no right to handgun ownership. With proper training and a license, shotguns and rifles are available, however.
posted by planetkyoto at 2:38 AM on July 4, 2002


There is also no direct election of the Prime Minister, the majority-winning party gets to choose.

Otherwise known as a parliamentary government.
posted by vbfg at 3:06 AM on July 4, 2002


No right to handgun ownership? I, on the other hand, have the right not to be shot at.
posted by salmacis at 3:45 AM on July 4, 2002


My 4th of July wish: for it to remain legal to disagree and dissent.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 5:39 AM on July 4, 2002


Happy Independence Day!

Watch your backs....
posted by rushmc at 5:55 AM on July 4, 2002


I hope no one blows their hand off.

Now I'm off to go to work... please stay at home and avoid the malls today, make my headache go away.
posted by dopamine at 6:43 AM on July 4, 2002


Good Lord. It's passive-aggressive Independence Day. This is why I'm getting tired of Metafilter.
posted by dhartung at 7:30 AM on July 4, 2002


Here are some quotes to consider today, from a few people who might just be declared "terrorists" if they made the same statements today:

"Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of liberty." -- Thomas Jefferson

"I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death." -- Patrick Henry

"Be not intimidated...nor suffer yourselves to be wheedled out of your liberties by any pretense of politeness, delicacy, or decency. These, as they are often used, are but three different names for hypocrisy, chicanery and cowardice." -- John Adams

"Nobody can give you freedom. Nobody can give you equality or justice or anything. If you're a man, you take it." -- Malcolm X

"They that can give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin

"The course of history shows that as a government grows, liberty decreases." -- Thomas Jefferson

"The very reason for the First Amendment is to make the people of this country free to think, speak, write and worship as they wish, not as the Government commands." -- Hugo Black

"The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary." -- H.L. Mencken

"All religions united with government are more or less inimical to liberty. All, separated from government, are compatible with liberty." -- Henry Clay

"Man exists for his own sake and not to add a laborer to the State." -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin

"This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the existing governmetn, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it or their revolutionary right to dismember it or overthrow it." -- Abraham Lincoln

"It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either." -- Mark Twain

"Make yourselves sleep and the wolves will eat you." -- Benjamin Franklin

"We cannot choose freedom established on a hierarchy of degrees of freedom, on a caste system of equality like military rank. We must be free not because we claim freedom, but because we practice it." -- William Faulkner

"I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." -- Thomas Jefferson

And from a Frenchman:

"The American Republic will endure, until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own money." -- Alexis de Tocquevile

Happy 4th, all.
posted by ed at 7:38 AM on July 4, 2002


Whoa, great quotes, ed! I particularly like the Mencken & Lincoln ones. Hurrah!

And now, some quotes from women, since there weren't any in your post:

"The dawn of freedom which it heralds may not break upon us at once; but it will surely come, and sooner, I believe, than we have ever dared hope before . . ."
- Charlotte Forten Grimke

"Democracy is not an easy form of government, because it is never final; it is a living, changing organism, with a continuous shifting and adjusting of balance between individual freedom and general order. "
- Ilka Chase

"Freedom is always and exclusively freedom for the one who thinks differently."
- Rosa Luxemburg

"I believe that we are here on the planet Earth to live, grow up and do what we can to make this world a better place for all people to enjoy freedom."
- Rosa Parks

"In a society where the rights and potential of women are constrained, no man can be truly free. He may have power, but he will not have freedom."
- Mary Robinson

"America is not a melting pot. It is a sizzling cauldron."
- Barbara Mikulski

"America's future walks through the doors of our schools each day."
- Mary Jean LeTendre

"As we move from an economy of affluence to an economy of scarcity, we must be careful that the people who make $5,000 a year are not pitted against those who make $25,000 a year by those who make $900,000."
- Barbara Mikulski (1974)

"Columbus only discovered that he was in some new place. He didn't discover America."
- Louise Erdrich

"I am not afraid of the pen, or the scaffold, or the sword. I will tell the truth wherever I please."
- Mary Harris \"Mother\" Jones

"I must say acting was good training for the political life which lay ahead for us."
- Nancy Reagan

"If American women would increase their voting turnout by ten percent, I think we would see an end to all of the budget cuts in programs benefiting women and children."
- Coretta Scott King

"If every American donated five hours a week, it would equal the labor of 20 million full-time volunteers."
- Whoopi Goldberg

"In America nobody says you have to keep the circumstances somebody else gives you."
- Amy Tan

"Men and women are like right and left hands; it doesn't make sense not to use both."
- Jeannette Rankin

"One can not be an American by going about saying that one is an American. It is necessary to feel America, like America, love America and then work."
- Georgia O'Keeffe
posted by acridrabbit at 8:47 AM on July 4, 2002


Exploding hamburgers. Heh.

I love being a man. It's eversomuch fun finding amusement in such things.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:12 AM on July 4, 2002


Exploding hamburgers. Heh.

I love being a man. It's eversomuch fun finding amusement in such things.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:12 AM on July 4, 2002


Happy "Indivisible Day" from Jesse Ventura!

In other news, some fireworks are now legal in Minnesota for the first time since before World War II. Woo-hoo!
posted by gimonca at 9:27 AM on July 4, 2002


(Starts bar-b-q.) ok, whos up for my rendition of ethel merman singing "Your a Grand Ole Flag"...Miguel will have brought enough booze to get a lite cruiser sloshed. New Yorkers bring the bud. we need chinese fire works. A fine macaroni salad. some fresh bing cherries...umm a few movies, a lap top or two... an iron ore boat cruise...cabins would be cheap folks.
enjoy your day, fuck fear, remember john adams, and a sam adams to mEfIs world wide.

"A HIGH FLYYYY-IN FLAG..."
posted by clavdivs at 10:10 AM on July 4, 2002


Happy Birthday, cousins. I can't think of a country I'd rather live next door to.
posted by timeistight at 10:24 AM on July 4, 2002


acidrabbit: No women? Oh dear! Guess that must mean I'm sexist! Call in the Berkeley Bartlett Death Squad. Have them take me away! After all, how dare I concentrate on the people who founded this country who, oh dear oh dear oh dear, happened to be Cacuasian males. Dear me!

But don't worry there, acidrabbit. I'll get more spics, niggers, kikes, wops, micks, chinks and wetbacks the next time I offer quotes. That would be the American thing to do, no? After all, the PC Police do grant me one phone call, don't they?
posted by ed at 2:27 PM on July 4, 2002


Why don't you go lie down with a cold cloth on your head, ed? You feel much better after a little nap.
posted by timeistight at 3:05 PM on July 4, 2002


We grilled up some steaks & burgers tonight, and I upon detecting the heavenly scent of meat BBQing, I commented, "Mmmm...the smell of freedom!"

Feel free to use that phrase.
posted by davidmsc at 7:02 PM on July 4, 2002


What is Mike Myers doing on the Macy's 4th Celebration Jammie on NBC? Isn't he a Canuck? They're taking over, I tell ya.
posted by adampsyche at 7:10 PM on July 4, 2002


timeistight: Stick it up my joke. Don't worry. It's self-guided. :)
posted by ed at 7:34 PM on July 4, 2002


Raise another one for me, ed. Don't forget the aspirin before going to bed.
posted by timeistight at 8:26 PM on July 4, 2002


I'm curious what you mean by "passive aggressive Independence Day" -- "this is why I'm getting tired of Metafilter" dhartung. If one were to be "tired" of "passive aggressiveness" why wouldn't that one vehemently rise to the occasion and point out to the one who you're vaguely blaming for the said "passive-aggressiveness" and rise up with foaming, slobbering vitriol and get to the point of what your problem with Metafilter is?

Instead you choose to be passive aggressive.

I'm assuming what you meant is that you disagree with the motive of my post and how it linked to the patently liberal and pacifist tompaine.com. But instead of saying so, you belittle.

I suppose you'll take this recent Gore Vidal interview to be passive-aggressive as well. Even though he gets to the point, levels blame and alludes to solutions. I doubt you will though. Cuz he's famous. Even though, doubtless you'll have many a problem with all that he says. Not a warblogger, but famous.

Fly that flag high over Kandahar.

Happy Independence Day!
posted by crasspastor at 3:42 AM on July 5, 2002


Me, I like the way division and unity reside in the same American space in Jasper Johns's Three Flags:

posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:56 AM on July 5, 2002


And if you do go away dhartung, as so many have, those of us who still stick around, will constantly have to remind each other that minds like yours still exist. Outside of Metafilter or wherever for that matter, exists a vacuum on On Demand debate. You may not like it that, I agree, progressive voices are much more in abundance nowadays here. But what's the alternative? A more passive-aggressive Metafilter with dozens of well meant liberals yammering amongst themselves? I would hope not.

If anything, the conservative voices must be brought more on board. Metafilter is only what Metafilter is. Kinda like the passive-aggressive America I painted with my commentary. Do whatever dhartung. Still, only your opinion can make Metafilter less tiresome.
posted by crasspastor at 4:09 AM on July 5, 2002


crasspastor, if you believe I am somehow against progressive voices then that's your problem, not mine. As it happens, I find your description all too apt: well-meant liberals yammering amongst themselves. It's fantasyland liberalism, like the post suggesting that corporate boards would be improved by the addition of a required humanitarian seat. Puh-lease.

I just don't think I can stand another flag day / independence day / whatever that is filled with thoughtful essays about Why I Love My Country, But Not Too Much. I considered putting in a few straightforward patriotic links, but when I saw the tenor of the posting for the day so far, I decided not to contribute, because the threads would soon be contaminated with this sad reflection of true liberalism, which always loved its country. There are 364 days of the year to be cynical, to dissent, to "speak truth to power". Yesterday I just wanted to wave a freakin' flag.
posted by dhartung at 8:52 AM on July 5, 2002


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