It's the best of times! It's the worst of times! In reality, it's whatever you want it to be.
We tend to think that everything is going to Hell in a handbasket. We can most likely lay that on our mass media in its myriad forms.
In fact, all the government crap going on has been going on since before July 4, 1776, didn't end when the Constitution was ratified or when the fifteenth president, President George Washington, was in the executive seat of this fledgling country and will continue into the future. Yes, George was the fifteenth president. There were fourteen other men who served one year terms prior to George Washington. They have all, pretty much been lost to history. . .
An example of how our educational system only teaches what the government wants us to know.
The partisan fighting, divisiveness, corruption, etc. has been going on in the three branches of our government since it began with the Continental Congress. As the old saying goes, "There is nothing new under the sun." What we're experiencing is the same old, same old struggle for power and control, usually with greed as one of the underlying motivators. The major difference is today we have a new "faux" elite class called Representatives, Senators, Supreme Court Justices and the two people in the throne (well one in the throne and one in the wings), the President and Vice-President. In other countries the elite, governing class go by other names such as king, queen, emperor, empress, dictator, duke, duchess, count, countess, viceroy, prime minister, member of parliament and even an honorary elite known as knights and ladies.
Little has changed over millennia, only the names, to protect the innocent (and there are no innocents). For all practical intents and purposes the world has been going to Hell in a handbasket since humans formed tribes and other "organized" community living arrangements.
So, here's the reality. Today is July 4th, a day the government has designated a national holiday to commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence from England. The document formalized the desire for a group, who have come to be known as "The Founding Fathers, to put in writing their vision of a new country, causing a war we know as the Revolutionary War. Thus, the day the Declaration of Independence was signed was the beginning of what the Founding Fathers envisioned as a bold new experiment in civilization. What they established and what we have today aren't exactly what they envisioned, but through all the crap I've eluded to, it has generally turned out pretty good. As a nation, we became the leading economy and example of a "limited" free society.
We have much to be grateful for despite all the problems, issues, back-biting, infighting, divisiveness, corruption, self-serving, etc. Yes! It is the best of times and it is the worst of times. But, the reality is, within certain boundaries, limitations and restrictions, we are free to live our lives independently and to pursue life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, however we define those qualities and values individually.
I hope you are enjoying a wonderful day with family and friends. If you are working today, to serve the rest of us, thank you for being there for each of us you serve in any manner. I hope the hot dogs, hamburgers, barbecue ribs, steaks, corn on the cob are delicious. But, I hope, besides going out to attend a rock, country, gospel or military band concert and watching the local fireworks display this evening, you take a few minutes out and think about all that you (and we, collectively) have to remember and celebrate. Take a few moments of silence to remember the millions of men and women who have served this country to allow you to enjoy this holiday (or even work on this holiday). The ultimate sacrifice for what we label "freedom" has been paid by untold thousands, probably in excess of a million, since "The shot heard around the world" on April 18, 1775 right up until today.
If you see a veteran, thank him or her for their service. We never get tired of hearing it. And, be sure to not only take a few moments to remember the significance of July 4, 1776, but make sure your children and grandchildren understand, too. They are the future and this country will only continue to stand and exist if they understand and stand for the true meaning of the 4th of July.