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IPFS News Link • Holidays

Bovard: Celebrate Fourth Of July By Cussing Politicians

• https://www.zerohedge.com, by James Bovard

For a couple centuries, Independence Day was an occasion for raising a ruckus with firecrackers and plenty of other friendly detonations.

But in recent times, the Fourth of July has been downgraded to simply another opportunity for citizens to express gratitude to their political masters. We are still permitted to celebrate, but unfortunately, federal, state, and local governments routinely trample the rights that the Founding Fathers sought to make sacrosanct.

The Fourth of July in Washington has been going downhill ever since 9/11. In his first draft of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson scratched out the word "subjects" and replaced it with "citizens." But on Independence Day 2003, I wondered whether that had been an editing error. I saw long lines of people awaiting outside government checkpoints around the National Mall, kowtowing for permission to celebrate independence according to the latest edicts. Police and security agents continue to have a far heavier presence in Washington and many other places than in earlier times. In 2015, police urged people heading for the National Mall on July Fourth to sign up for a free emergency text alert system called NIXLE. (Subtext: "All your email addresses belong to us!")

How many Americans recall that the Fourth of July originally consecrated an independence achieved thanks to resistance to a corrupt, oppressive regime? In 2018, Facebook, auditioning for a Federal Censorship Medal of Honor, deleted a Texas newspaper's reposting of a portion of the Declaration of Independence because it went against Facebook standards on hate speech. Facebook used the same standard to suppress photos of the Branch Davidian home in flames after the FBI tank assault.

In 2019, when President Donald Trump ordered the Pentagon to bring out of mothballs some World War II-era Sherman tanks, the media was indignant. The Washington Post condemned Trump's "gaudy display of military hardware that is more in keeping with a banana republic than the world's oldest democracy." But the real problem was not the military relics. It was exalting government power and politicians on a day meant to celebrate individual liberty.


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