I have a house where I go
When there’s too many people,
I have a house where I go
Where no one can be;
I have a house where I go,
Where nobody ever says “No”;
Where no one says anything –so
There is no one but me.
~ A.A. Milne ~ Solitude
Today is the Fourth of July, 2012. My husband and I discussed that we would do whatever it is that we want, relax, enjoy the day. He has a day off from work, so do I. There is no mail. So, my husband went about reading his one of his favorite theologians, John Dominic Crossan.
I decided to watch Wimbledon tennis, Andrew Murray, the Scot, hometown boy there in Great Britain play David Ferrer, the kid from Spain. The area around Wimbledon is decked out also for the 2012 Olympics, and many people in the crowd are carrying their country’s flags and waving their flags when their favorite tennis pro is doing well. Wimbledon courts suddenly got rain on the grass,so they quickly covered the slippery grass with a tarp, and the match was postponed.
So I watched the movie, “Mirror, Mirror,” an updated version of Snow White with Julia Roberts as the evil, hedonistic queen. That was dull enough that I then took a mid-afternoon nap. Oh, what a lazy day! I woke up by dinner time, very hungry. Sometimes, I wish I did not have to feel hunger, and could go on and on without the hassle of, “what to eat.” Now that’s lazy!
I called in some BBQ brisket, no sides, and I will eat it on pumpernickel bread I have here. I’ve been purposely trying to lose weight. I have lost fifteen pounds now. Sometimes KC BBQ gets in the way! Rex is gone to his bi-monthly meeting of friends who discuss theology, so I’m here on my own with Swissy dog, listening to firecrackers go off in this night of celebration of our independence from Great Britain. At first, I was perturbed thinking, ‘why did my dear husband of 38 years leave me to go away on this holiday to be with his friend Gene to discuss theology.’ Then I thought, ‘why not?’ For us, The Fourth of July carries mixed feelings of militarism, war heroes over peace heroes, nationalism to the point of nausea, too much mixture of religion with politics and the golden calf.
Everywhere we turn there are those intense people putting every section of ground with US flags, flying flags from their cars, putting the flag in the sanctuary of the church, even placing flags on the drive up to church.
What is this all about really? What inspires people who normally are not very energetic in civic matters, who normally complain about “government,” so filled with this desire to honor nation? Why don’t they pay attention and be involved on all other 364 days of the year concerning governmental agencies, power structures, democracy advocacy?
Are people really just happy to have the day off to drink, eat, and be merry, and The Fourth of July is just another holiday? Or do people really need this day to shoot off fireworks, watch parades, to watch politicians on floats in parades, during this election year? Do people have real freedom? Economic freedom, civic freedom, freedom of speech, freedom from want? Who is calling the shots nowadays and how is America doing this many years after we fought to have freedom?
I won’t answer these questions for you, dear reader, but I hope you ponder these , and decide for yourself what you are going to do to continue to make our civic arenas more free for all? What significance do flags have in your life? What does freedom mean to you, for others? May freedom ring for women and men, all races and creeds, all peace activists, and kind nuns on the bus. May the powerful be brought down to earth, with eyes and ears wide open to what makes life beautiful, truthful, meaningful, sustaining for all. Here’s to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness!