I found it amusing to learn that of a study that claimed that Democrats don't benefit from Independence Day celebrations. I didn't give politics much thought this weekend, but I can understand why this is.
On both Saturday and Monday, my family and I visited "Colonial Days" in two different cities. Tents were set up so that individuals could demonstrate all sorts of aspects of Colonial life. We saw candles being made, discussed the fine (and gruesome) arts of surgery, played Nine Man's Morris, saw wool spun into yarn and weaved into cloth. In a booth full of muskets, I talked to my daughter about how to load a flintlock, and what a bayonet was for. One presentation discussed how well-aimed cannon fire literally reduced entire regiments of Confederate soldiers to pink mist. We saw displays about the Mayflower and the local Indians. My children even attended a Colonial school.
A local museum had copies of the Declaration of Independence, artifacts of the dual between Arron Burr and Alexander Hamilton, and other artifacts related to American culture; another museum showed the history of the printing press, starting with a replica of Gutenberg's original press.
My children had the opportunity to be frightened by musket fire and cannon fire, as minutemen performed their ceremonies; and in the end, my oldest daughter wanted to be a "Colonial". I have no idea how to do that, but I'd like to be involved, too!
Amusingly, a person demonstrating how to cast bullets over an open fire had a discussion with an observer about how awful our current regulations are--unintentionally echoing the types of conversations likely happening in 1775.
And while we missed the parade, we saw plenty of fireworks, both on Saturday (we watched "Stadium of Fire" fireworks from the grass at a local park) and Monday (our neighbors had a fantastic fireworks display, complimented by newly-legalized "shooting" fireworks lit around the neighborhood).
I couldn't imagine a better celebration of freedom and independence!
And that's the problem that Democrats face: while I wouldn't consider the Republican Party to be a bastion of freedom, it certainly pays more lip service to freedom than the Democrat Party does. Thus, any holiday that celebrates freedom is bound to favor the Republican Party--to the extent that anyone is thinking about politics as well.
I would confess that this holiday didn't reinforce my love for my country. It reinforced my love of freedom, and a greater appreciation for the time period that this love became entrenched into our country. Thus, it reaffirmed my desire to help us be more free.
And it's a reminder that I'm happy to be alive, and to be free!