Today is Independence Day for the United States of America, or sadly what it has become known as – the 4th of July. To be honest, I don’t know what it was like to live under British rule and taxation without representation…oops! Maybe I should leave that one alone.
I am thrilled that our Congress, which satisfactorily represents us doesn’t mess with my religious rights by telling preachers what they can or can’t say, or strong-arm and manipulate the press and newspapers to skew the truth. I am especially giddy how our government addresses the will of the people over global and Capitalistic goals.
I’m rolling my eyes so much as I write this that I’m getting as dippy as Nancy Pelosi.
Our forefathers gave us law-abiding citizens the right to own firearms and to form militias for one reason and one reason alone. Because under British rule, the citizens had been abused and they knew our right to bear arms was so we could rise up, if need be, and expel our leaders – read: overlords. Thankfully, our elected officials know this and wholeheartedly agree with the 2nd amendment of the Bill of Rights. Right? Help me here.
Way back there when the Bill of Rights was enacted, people had the right to a speedy and public trial. The public part is still there for the most part, but the speedy has left the building. Lawyers. Rules. Laws. Anything and everything to stall going to trial is the rule of the day; then there is the sentencing and if a person is actually sentenced to death row, wait another 14 years and maybe they will get a stay of execution to prolong their sentence.
Back in the Bible days, lawyers were called scribes. Weren’t scribes one of the three vocations Jesus was always condemning? Scribes, Pharisees, and publicans – yup. Nothing has changed there. Lawyers, self-righteous religious leaders, and tax-collectors are still a bone of contention to most.
Sorry Judge Don Coffey; there’s bound to be a hotdog, or a baseball in this column somewhere, I swear. No personal offense intended. Don is a friend and a major fact contributor to BaytownTalks.net and much appreciated. He is just one of a number of city officials and experts who make the new forum a wonderful source of information.
And I’ve voted for Stephen DonCarlos for mayor of Baytown... 6 times when I was a Democrat.
Now we get to this danged 10th amendment. “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.” Geeze, is it me, or should we just go ahead and bury this one? I mean, come on. Does our Federal government still have a copy of this amendment? Can I call the White House and talk to the president and ask him?
“Hello, this is Grover Cleveland, the President of the United States. May I help you?”
“Mr. President, are your people still using the Bill of Rights to make sure they don’t violate the will of the people?”
“Yuppers, we sure are. Gotta go; got another call coming in.”
I remember growing up playing baseball and eating hotdogs in and around Independence Day. It was very happy times. I was blissfully ignorant about the Middle East and our dependence on fossil fuels, which by the way is about the only real reason we are fighting over there. Folks like to believe it is about our support for Israel, but it’s not. It’s about global selfish interests and the bottom line.
As a kid, I lived the life of the boys in the movie, “Sandlot” to the tee. Fireworks, sunshine, the shaky grill with burgers and dogs, corn on the cob, and lots of soda waters, which at the time we called Pop, was what the 4th of July was to me. This was before I learned about double time, or double time and a half, or the US military and being stationed in a far away country on holidays.
Independence Day became a work holiday for me and just another day where my hourly wage was doubled or more and for many years, this was all it was – like Christmas, sadly. Sure, we flew our flag at home, but most of the time, it was flown without me, as I was always working.
For the first time in my life, the 4th of July will truly be Independence Day, as I am now my own boss and happily retired. Today will not pay me anything extra except the satisfaction of knowing I am blessed to live in this wonderful country. A country whose independence was bought with blood and sacrifice of those who went before me into battle to secure those rights I am writing about. I am also happy to say I contributed to our freedom in the U.S. Air Force.
No longer blissfully ignorant and like you I watch our Federal government and wonder if the 2nd amendment isn’t more relevant than ever. I would love to return to the days of hotdogs and baseball, but unless things begin to change, I’m afraid that is about as likely as Barry answering the White House phone.