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A Fourth Without Fireworks Share This on LinkedIn   Tweet This   Forward This

4 July 2020

The temptation is to straighten out the mast on this symbol of independence flying the flag. But when we tried that, it set the world around it askew.

Somehow that seems an apt metaphor for the situation we find ourselves in this Fourth of July.

You either believe it's time to party again or you face the music of record daily infections.

Either your mast is straight or the horizon is level. Pick one.

We won't spend any time on what, as a national holiday, should be a day off for us arguing the point. There's no argument. The mast is not straight. The ship is listing.

But we will plead with our fellow citizens to skip the mass suicide, stay home and barbecue some hot dogs and burgers, being content with the sparks flying up from the coals.

Not that there's any party going on anywhere anyway.

"As many as 80 percent of the holiday fireworks displays in large cities and small towns have been canceled because of the pandemic," the New York Times reported. And while it's the pandemic's fault this year, next year it will be municipal budget cuts as cities try to recover financially from the hit they've taken this year.

End of plea.

But we can't help pointing out the name of this listing ship that pretends its mast is straight.

Sorcery indeed. Fueled by incantations you can fit on the front of a cap.

But the 244-year-old sentence Americans recite today is, it should be remembered, too long for the front of any cap:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

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