Boom 🧨

Just what pleasure do people get from setting off obnoxiously loud fireworks for hours on end?  I’ve never understood it.  I am sitting here at just after midnight, and every few seconds comes another loud BOOM!  This is an apartment complex of 180 townhouses, most occupied by working class families with children and pets.  Some actually go to bed and sleep at night, but obviously not tonight. My own cats are cowering under the sofa.  There are a number of fireworks shows in and around this city with fireworks that are actually pretty, that light up the night sky with colour, so why don’t these fools attend one of those?  No, they would rather set off fireworks that only make loud noise and cause my heart to literally jump with every single one.  I am too old for this crap.

The reason for the fireworks?  Today is the 4th of July 2021.  Here in the United States it is a federal holiday commemorating the passage of the Declaration of Independence by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776.  There was a time when this day meant something to me. Today, I find it difficult to feel any particular loyalty to a nation that is so divided we seem to be two distinctly separate countries, only without geographic boundaries.  There is no middle ground anymore … you are either a liberal or conservative, Democrat of Republican, human or racist, thinker or follower.  There have, of course, always been such divisions, but until about a decade ago, there was a middle ground, some things that we could all agree on.  Today, that middle ground is gone, replaced by a wide chasm, a desolate wasteland where neither side will venture.  Worse yet, civility and respect have also flown the coop such that if one person disagrees with another, they will call each other vulgar names and hurl accusations, maybe even threats.

We are on a path that is taking us far from the ideology that this nation was once based on, that of “all ‘men’ being created equal.”  Racism is on the rise around the nation, promoted by many of our elected officials.  Our right to participate in our government via our vote is on the chopping block and was dealt what may turn out to be a death blow last Thursday by none other than the U.S. Supreme Court.

Inflation is >5% just in the past year, and many families who lost income during the pandemic are struggling to survive while state governments are cutting unemployment benefits.

Gun violence is beyond words … anybody can buy and own a gun … as many of them as they want.  They can buy automatic weapons that can kill everyone in the room within a minute or two.  Shootings at grocery stores, mosques, on the streets, in theaters and bars have become commonplace and one half of the nation would protect their right to own a gun before they would protect their own children.

The U.S. is the #1 per capita emitter of the carbon that is literally killing us all with melting icecaps, rising sea levels, deadly heat, water shortages, ruined crops and more and the people of this nation rebel at any suggestion that they make certain lifestyle changes to try to turn things around.

No, I’m afraid there really isn’t a whole lot to celebrate this holiday.  The one bright spot is that we do, after four long years, finally have a president who is intelligent and compassionate, who cares about the needs of the people, but even that bright light is dimmed by those who would put up obstacles at every turn to slow or halt any progress he might make.

So no, I’m not celebrating this holiday … this is just another Sunday to me and frankly I’ll be glad when this long weekend is over and the fireworks stop so the kitties can come out from under the sofa, we can stop worrying about a fire here in da hood, and my heart can settle back into my chest.

45 thoughts on “Boom 🧨

  1. the magat’s across the road from us started sending up rockets and exploding cherry bombs (both are illegal within city limits) at about 5 PM…it continued until 11 pm when they set their house of fire. The fire began when a rocket went off track and slammed into their “Trump is still the presitent” Flag. (no, I spelled that exactly the way they did on their stupid flag). They were too drunk to figure out all they had to do was pull the flag down…the neighbors and I had a marvelous time watching their drunken bellowing about “does anyone gots a hose?” while continuing to set off rockets. Judy (next door) said “this reminds me of a bugs bunny cartoon…acme rockets”. While I was agreeing with her and snickering the flag fell onto the roof of the house where it began eating the shingles…nice cedar ones that hadn’t been treated in at least five years. I (and Judy and Sally from across the street) all called 911 at the same time. George, when told what was going on said “well, honestly…what else could you expect from them?” The house, two trucks and a car were all total losses. Of course it is “Joe Biden’s fault” for allowing people to purchase fireworks. Can you just SEE ME rolling these eyes???

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    • OH SUZE!!!! I know it isn’t funny, but … YES, it IS … I am rolling over with laughter at your IDIOT neighbors and their misfortune, though I know I’m not a nice person for doing so! For once, a case of poetic justice! I’m just glad your house and the other neighbors’ are all okay. Thank you so much for sharing that with me … I needed that bit of humour today!

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  2. I have to admit, I’m one of those terrible people who love setting off fireworks. There’s just something exciting about it for me…but I did always limit it to just a couple of hours at a get-together with friends. I agree that setting them off for days or weeks on end is dumb and inconsiderate. For what it’s worth, climate change may put an end to my hijinks. It’s just been way too dry here in Oregon to risk it this year, and I suspect this is what the summers are increasingly going to be like, so….

    And yes, I will stubbornly and defiantly continue to celebrate the 4th, flags, songs and all. I will NOT let Trump supporters steal patriotism from me. They do not own that stuff.

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    • Awww … you’re not a terrible people! I doubt you shoot off fireworks at midnight on a night when you know your neighbors have to get up and go to work the next morning! A little bit goes a long way, and then it crosses the line into being disrespectful. Yes, I’m sure it’s a tinderbox out there already this summer. Did you have those triple digit temperatures last week?

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      • We did! It was a nightmare. I hate climate change. I have never experienced that kind of heat before, and never want to again.

        And no, I do not let fireworks off at midnight…or in the middle of extreme drought conditions…and I always clean up after myself 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        • See, I told you that you’re not a ‘terrible people’ … you even clean up after yourself and let us poor working people sleep at night!

          We haven’t had the triple-digit temps yet, but I won’t be surprised if we get them later in the summer. It has been unseasonably hot here, in the 90s (F), but I can’t complain, for it hasn’t yet broken 100°. Take care, my friend, and stay cool if at all possible.

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  3. Pingback: BOOM | Ramblings of an Occupy Liberal

  4. There’s always a whole lot to celebrate even for us cynics. You have good internet, you can talk freely without fear of being sued except for twitter jail and a lot more. Happy 4th of July

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  5. I passed on celebrating Canada Day on July 1st. (Truth to be told I have passed on celebrating it for over 30 years now, but this year is different!) We are at over 1000 dead children buried individually or in mass graves, most of then unmarked, in the vicinity of now-closed Residential Schools right across Canada, and we have only just begun to expose those tragedies. I doubt the real number of murdered indigenous indentured students will ever be counted, and that does not even speak to how many children were physically, mentally, and, yes, SEXUALLY abused at those houses of horror, all with the permission of the white Canadian government who were out to assimilate–commit genocide on–indigenous peoples.
    I know America also had Residential Schools. Is anyone down there looking into what happened in them? Canada took its cues from the United States!
    So, Jill, I will not offer you a celebratory offering about July 4th. Neither nation is worth celebrating right now. Maybe someday, again. Not today.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yes, I have been reading about that … unbelievable! I’m horrified to think of those poor children and HOW did this not come to light sooner? As to your question … I have no idea, but I cannot imagine a child’s death simply going unnoticed here. But then, you probably couldn’t imagine it in Canada either. Sigh. No, my friend, I am not celebrating this nation today, for more and more I want to simply renounce my citizenship here. I don’t think of myself as a citizen of this country … haven’t for a long while.

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      • Truthfully, Jill, whether we wanted to admit it or not, we all knew Residential Schools did all the horrendous things we are now forced to face. About 10 or 15 years ago the Canadian government handed out “monetary reparations” in the millions of dollars to survivors of Residential Schools who could prove they were survivors. (Guess who controlled those records!) They were trying to buy the silence of those who were irreparably harmed in those places.
        But now, there is no silence, and the voices of dead children are going to grow. I heard on the news today we are now over 1300 and counting. Many First Nations cannot afford the ground-penetrating radar to look around the grounds of the Residential Schools in their areas, but eventually all areas will be covered, and the bodies will be counted and brought home.
        As for deaths going unnoticed, many records show these children as runaways, a euphemism for murder. Maybe check the records of children at American Residential Schools, I bet you will find lots of runaways. Some may actually have escaped, but what were they “escaping from”? School should not be something children had to escape from.

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          • It was. And now that the bodies are finally being found, it has destroyed everyone’s fantasies that it didn’t really happen, things weren’t really that bad. No, they were even worse. But the only ones who cared were indigenous, and they don’t count.

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              • In a way, it is not worth trying. In another way, how can people not want to know? There is a huge guilt lying over most European-related peoples that they do not want to acknowledge, they stole this land from human people. They called us savages and they murdered us as if we were animals. They took what we never owned, because we never developed the need to own. Our borders were very fluid, if we even had borders. Most didn’t. It was land that belonged to everyone, and we shared it with all living beings. The European settlers moved in with their property ideas, kicked us off the land if we even allowed us to live, and bullied us if we tried to protect ourselves. We were always in the wrong, because they had the rights right from their God.
                But we were humans, and deep down they knew that. They repressed their feelings, and taught their children they had no guilt.
                But they had guilt, and now the evidence is being shoved in their faces. They don’t like it, but they cannot deny it. No, it wasn’t them, individually, but it was them, racially. White people need healing as much as indigenous people do. They are just realizing that, while their neighbours refuse to believe. This too causes a split between people. It is not a healthy situation for anyone.

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  6. Thank you for sharing!!… thinking today many just use the day to justify celebration, drink and be merry and not the meaning behind the holiday…“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” (Declaration of Independence, USA) , but it seems there are elements of today’s USA society (and world’s societies) that have either not read those words, do not understand or the words just “went in one ear and out the other”…. 🙂

    Having a quiet 4th of July here with a cup of tea, relaxing and watching the world go by… 🙂

    Have a Happy, and safe, holiday and until we meet again..
    May the love that you give
    Always return to you,
    That family and friends are many
    And always remain true,
    May your mind only know peace
    No suffering or strife,
    May your spirit only know love and happiness
    On your journey through life.
    (Larry “Dutch” Woller)

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    • That, too, is part of my disillusionment with the holiday … most people view it as a time to crack open a keg o’ beer, grill out, smoke pot, and shoot off fireworks in order to annoy others. There is no deep thought about the meaning of the day, yet they call themselves “patriots”. I tried to have a quiet forth, my friend … I DID actually manage to read an entire book (314 pages) in one afternoon today! But quiet was not to be, for the people here were shooting off fireworks non-stop from 5:30 p.m. ’til nearly midnight. Ah well, it’s over now … hopefully tomorrow night will be quieter. Thank you for that beautiful poem, Dutch … I love it!

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    • Yes, as a child I delighted in them … at least, the pretty ones that light up in a rainbow of colours. But noisy ones never appealed, and with each passing year they appeal even less. Tonight, the people here in da hood made the windows rattle for a solid 6.5 hours! Needless to say, my heart is still not back to normal.

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  7. Jill, the 4th has become a jingoistic effort to an extent. Yes, we should celebrate and yes we should take the extra time to be with family. But, if we do celebrate our country, we should celebrate that we are a work in progress. As an example, our history has been one of extending the right to vote to new groups of people – non-land owners, former slaves, women, African-Americans restricted by Jim Crow, etc. Now, we have a group of people who have been setting laws the last ten years to limit the right to vote as the demographics do not work in their favor – a new Jim Crow-like effort. The latest wave on the backs of the former president’s unproven (and planned) claims of fraud is disgusting and should be called out for its deception. Keith

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    • I view much of the extreme display of “patriotism” as false … worshiping a flag or an anthem is not patriotism. Patriotism is fighting to make a nation better, to preserve what is good and fight against what is wrong. Putting off annoying fireworks for six straight hours does not a patriot make! You are right to point out that there are good things we have accomplished … we should remember those. But, we cannot turn a blind eye to the horrors we are seeing today. We are moving backward and that does not make us a ‘great’ nation … not at all. If one single person is denied the right to vote, then we do not have a democracy. Sigh.

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      • Jill, voters who are disenfranchised by these laws need to turn out en masse. At the heart of this is one party wants to restrict the vote because of its threatening demographics, while the other wants to expand the vote as that is our right. If the Republicans had better demographic projections, they would argue the opposite – this is all about power. Keith

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        • Indeed, it is all about power and the Republicans are determined to grab it even if they have to cheat to do so. At our expense. The For the People Act would have ended gerrymandering, which is the first step to more fair elections, and of course would have put paid to the states’ voter suppression laws. But, my sense is that it is DOA, thanks to those in both parties who simply cannot find where they left their consciences.

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  8. THANK YOU! & it’s not just the Fourth anymore. They’re doing it all weekend now. All over WNY, there’s been “official” firework displays in various town parks & at the baseball games, etc. There was one in a park about a mile from where I live on Friday night. It was LOUD. Of course, the residents of my apartment complex have been partying & tossing off fireworks every night since Thursday.

    The only upside to this are the gloriously quiet mornings.

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    • Yes, they started here on Thursday night, but tonight was the worst! They started at 5:30 and went until almost midnight when the police showed up and shut them down. By tomorrow, hopefully my heartbeat will have returned to normal! I told my daughter that I’m tempted to drive my car through da hood in the morning at 6:00 a.m. with the horn blaring non-stop!!! But, I won’t because I hope to be sleeping by then!

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  9. It now seems that was once thought the strongest nation o the face of the Earth is crumbling after a mere two hundred and fifty years or so as certain people think wealth alone should make them top of the totem pole in direct conflict with the document signed in 1776 which guaranteed that all men were created equal. It seems they want to change that without waiting for laws to be created. Perhaps because they know that people would object to such a radical change of something so important in their Nationhood.
    Some of the founding fathers left countries where they felt stifled by Kings and Religious laws and now a new group want to create that again with themselves at the helm.
    Happy Birthday America, what date will you settle on to celebrate the return to suppression and serfdom?
    Have a Happy Fourth of July
    Cwtch

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    • It does seem to be crumbling, and without any assistance from the outside. We the People have stopped learning, have stopped caring, and have turned into self-centered egoists who cannot be bothered to lift a finger to protect what others fought so hard for some 250 years ago and since. I’m fairly certain that if the Founding Fathers could return today and see what we’ve made of this country, they would be appalled, might even wish we had remained British colonies. More than once, I have wished that. Independence obviously went to our heads and we have abused it to the point of self-destruction. R.I.P. United States.
      Cwtch

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