Sunday, July 4, 2010

On This Day

For Americans, July 4th is the anniversary of day the British colonies in what is now the US, declared their independence from Great Britain. All over the the world Americans celebrate this date.

Beyond the Declaration of Independence, today's date is a symbolic date in America. Since we are in a party mood, its a great time for politicians and assorted big wigs to begin any number of ceremonial undertakings. For instance:

Today marks the anniversary of the founding of the US Military Academy, at West Point. Happy Birthday.

Today, marks the anniversary of the public announcement of the Louisiana Purchase. For non-Americans, the LP is the purchase for $15 million of all French territory in North America, below what is now the Canadian border. Includes most of the territory west of the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountains.

Author Henry David Thoreau began his stay on Walden Pond, George Washington was unveiled on Mt. Rushmore, work began on the Erie canal.

Also in education, on this date in 1881 Tuskegee University, one of the first black colleges in America opened its doors.

In sports, The first US bull fight was held in Dodge City Kansas, the first ever rodeo was held in Prescott Az.. Joe Louis won his first professional fight, and riots broke out across the country after black fighter Jack Johnson beat a white fighter Jim Jeffries. In baseball, Yankee star Lou Gerhig retired from baseball.

The Philippines were granted full independence on this date in 1946.

The 49 star and 50 star US flags were introduced in 1959, and 1960.

In science, the Mars Rover landed.

So while we celebrate Independence Day, we have a great deal more to be thankful for. Today, is the traditional swearing in day for immigrants wishish American citizenship.

Often we forget that all Americans are immigrants. Ben Franklin railed against German immigrants in Pennsylvania, anti Irish riots were held in the midst of the US Civil War. Later, Eastern Asians were denied access,and today it is Hispanics who are unwelcome.

In spite of ourselves, this is a pretty great country. I salute and welcome our new citizens. We are a better place with you here.

Happy fourth of July.



Shelley said...

Very well spoken, Toad! I second that!

James said...

You are of course correct, I admire your fortitude in saying it. Well done.

sue in mexico mo said...

Thank you!

Patsy said...

I was lucky enough to attend a swearing in ceremony on the USS Constitution on the 4th, a number of years ago. Seeing the pride and joy on the faces of those people was overwhelming, I think everyone on the ship cried.