Sunday, July 4, 2010

Independence Day Conundrums

More than usual, I've been thinking about what Independence Day means and have walked myself into some corners with questions I can't answer:

1. Kepler's Books in Menlo Park has a July 4th sale where they pay the sales tax.  Isn't tax what ticked us off against England in the first place? With ~10% sales tax, maybe Kepler's is sending a message.
2. If I were an immigrant in this country, Lebanese, Indian or Mexican, for example, would I be celebrating today as Independence Day? How much does the answer differ for men and women?
3. I didn't go to church today and today, of all days, is one to be grateful to God for this country and for living here. I am overwhelmed by my own lack of appreciation.
4. Is celebrating Independence Day as stage that a country goes through, like turning 21 is for an adult?
5. We seem to be obsessed with independence as a country....from England, from government, from taxes....and periodically, from oil. Yet we are quite dependent, very generally speaking, on government spending, on the holders of our debt to keep holding it in good faith, and on gas.

Well, I don't have answers but being aware of the questions gives a better sense of the context in which I live. For today, back to our regularly scheduled programming of fireworks and barbecues. Happy 4th of July!

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