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Blog on the Fourth of July

July 4th, 2004 · 3 Comments

I couldn’t believe it. We got on the shuttle bus to go to downtown for the island Fourth of July parade, and who happened to get on the bus after us but Chip Gibbons. (Sitting down tonight at my desk, to the sound of many small explosions, I read his July 3 post on fireworks.)

Then we were watching the parade and as the Kerry contingent walked past us, dressed in matching hats, I realized that we knew the person who was leading the group (with a megaphone, I think I remember, and lots of passion): Jake of 8bitjoystick.com!

Bloggers abound on the Fourth of July!
… perhaps appropriately…

Here are a few favorite posts from the holiday:

Brent Simmons listed cool American people and things (found via Scripting News). My own list would also include Northwest delights of The Space Needle, Raymond Carver, Mt. Rainier and Mt. St. Helens. I like Silicon Valley, National Zoo, the underground railroad and Aaron Copland too, to name a few we have in common. But I’d also want to include crab cakes, cabinets and clam chowder, sourdough bread, maple bars, the San Juan Islands, the Olympic rain forest, Cannon Beach, Santa Cruz, Newport RI, Ogunquit ME, the Grand Coulee Dam, Washington State apples, Bainbridge Island strawberries, Boston ice cream, Cape Cod, the Columbia River… not to mention many people (including some bloggers!) I admire, honor and love…

Canadian Jeff Sandquist described why he will be applying to become an American citizen

As a teenager in Canada, whenever I heard about an actor or actress from Canada becomning an American part of me was jealous, but I also wondered what made them do it and why?

A year ago I ran into a fellow Canadian living in Toronto. When he heard I was living in the USA, he shook my hand and congratulated me saying, “You’ve achieved the Canadian dream! You now live in the USA“. You are so fortunate.

So why become an American?

There are many reasons, many deep some of which are…

It is about being able to have a stake in your country through voting
My wife and both daughters are American. I’d love to be able to them the importantance of voting and of course vote together as a family
Its about this being a permantent home and becoming a member of the list of immigrants before me who’ve helped to build this nation.
The list of reasons goes on and on. …

I look forward to reading Jeff’s posts as he blogs through the process of becoming an American.

Last week Ted described OB4.org, further evidence of the exciting things simmering inside the building where the OSAF offices are. I’ve browsed through the blog and found it relevant to the holiday celebrations marking the meaning, structure and identity of America. What are the challenges and what are the changes that need to happen? Started by Joe Costello, Bart Decrem and Mitch Kapor, OB4.org is a place for dialoguing and discussing where we need to go next as a nation.

Joe Costello wrote about political reform:

The Declaration was signed by 56 revolutionaries. These men, and they were all men and all of European extract, took a large step away from the established political order and embraced radical and unproven ideas of human liberty and self-government.
The course of human events has now proceeded to our own era. So as we celebrate this Fourth, we would do best to honor the work of our forebears not with speeches, parades, or new statues, but by continuing their work. Every citizen needs to ask what does self-government look like: not in an age where the fastest means of communication was a horse, but in the age of Cassini; not in an age of the printing press but in the age of the Internet; and not in an age when a small population of European immigrants settled in 13 colonies precariously held onto their independence at the edge of the American continent, but in a time when 6 billion people populate a small planet.

Mitch Kapor asked Where to from here?:

We can look back to the Founders, especially Jefferson, for inspiration and guidance. We need to reaffirm the founding principles of our republic, namely that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are unalienable rights for every person around the globe. Jefferson reminds us that republican and democratic governments are instituted to insure equal opportunity for every citizen (worth repeating, every citizen), and as Jefferson stated, to put it out of the power of the few to riot on the labors of the many.

We must also look forward, recognizing it is no longer the 18th century or even the 20th.

Change has to start from how things actually are, not how we pretend, and must head toward what is achievable, not how we simply wish things to be.

This is the place, and now is the time.


Tags: America

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Randy Charles Morin // Jul 5, 2004 at 3:32 am

    Not that CDN is any different, but Jeff’s right to vote is a little lost on me. By the way, I met Jeff last year on a trip to Redmond. Smart guy. Good guy. You get to vote for Bush or Kerry. Most likely you vote for the candidate you hate the least. Sorry to be negative.

  • 2 The Binary Circumstance // Jul 5, 2004 at 10:22 pm

    A Really Cool Invention

    When I ran into Julie Leung yesterday on the shuttle to the 4th of July parade in Winslow, I told her that after checking out the parade I was going to paint. She mentioned that she didn’t like to paint

  • 3 Jake of 8bitjoystick.com // Jul 7, 2004 at 7:48 am

    No Microphone for me. I just screemed and yelled like a zelot.