Roger L. Simon

The Last Fourth

Will 2015 be the last Fourth of July?  Probably not. The San Diego beachgoers in the video above will still want to celebrate with a brewski or three, even though — other than one Italian tourist — none of them seemed to know what in the Sam Hill this holiday is about. (Something to do with independence? From whom?) Talk about low-information voters.  These guys would have been low-information in the Paleolithic Age.

But speaking of ages, among the many unpleasant outcomes of the Age of Obama has been the virtual disappearance of American patriotism, unless, of course, you ask Obama himself.  Our president rules the USA rather like Franz Joseph ruled the Austro-Hungarian Empire back in the nineteenth century.  As fans of  John Osborne will recall, the British playwright used one of the emperor’s more famous quotes for the title of his play A Patriot for Me (“Ask not whether the man is a patriot — is he a patriot for me?”)

That fits Obama to a T — and probably a U, V, W, X, Y and Z as well. After all, he is the man who assures us he successfully reformed our healthcare and saved our economy despite adding about eight trillion to the national debt (nearly doubling it) and overseeing an all-time low in labor participation, approaching a hundred million souls not even looking for work.  (Why should they?  They can get all the sushi they want on food stamps anyway.)

Okay, there have been a few setbacks on the racial front, but not to worry.  He  is a master of foreign affairs.  So what if those religious sociopaths in Tehran get the bomb?  They’re our friends now. We’re not going to be any higher than third or fourth on their target list. And, yes, it’s true that jayvee team from Rakka has taken over half of Iraq and Syria and is threatening just about everywhere else (including wherever you are right now) but that’s sports.  Upsets happen. Didn’t you see  Nadal go out in the third round  at Wimbledon on Thursday?

So Fourth of July, shmourth of July… who cares? Patriotism, as Samuel Johnson told us, is the last refuge of scoundrels.  All those people who yell “USA! USA!” at pep rallies and the Olympics are refugees from that Paleolithic Age.  Get with the program.  Patriotism is so 2007.  As long as your burgers are made with grass-fed beef and you promise not to recite the word “melting pot,” everything’s cool.

Okay, enough of the sarcasm.  I have something serious to say.  I’m one sad American on Fourth of July weekend 2015.  I miss my country and I want it back.  I keep thinking of that quote attributed to Benjamin Franklin when he emerged from the Constitutional Convention. “Well, Doctor, what have we got—a republic or a monarchy?”  “A republic, if you can keep it.”

Right now we’re not doing a very good job of keeping it. If Franklin were here, he’d probably tell us we already lost it.  Whose fault is that?  Obama and his claque of true believers.  Sure, but we can’t do anything about them.  They are who they are.  If we want the country back that we grew up in, whether we are 30, 40 or on up, we have to fight for it as hard as they did in 1776. So get out your muskets and your iPhones. We’re at Valley Forge all over again.  I don’t want this Fourth of July to be the last — and I’m sure you don’t either.

Okay, let’s fire up the barbie and have some fun.  Happy Fourth!