Fireworks have never been my favorite thing in the world. They are loud and potentially could blow my hand off or worse. My brother, on the other hand, loves fireworks like most Americans do. People shell out thousands of dollars to blow up all the products within 24 hours. Most kids these days only know this as one day: the 4th of July. We have stopped calling the holiday what it actually is to the point we now communicate the day with just that; the day it is.
While I was never a firework fan I did appreciate Independence Day. For those who don’t know, this day (on July 4, 1776) celebrates the adoption of our Declaration of Independence, a document that declared the American colonies as a new nation separate of the British Empire. America fought tirelessly for years in the Revolutionary War for this one spectacular day. America comes from great men and women who wanted to have freedoms and rights that we did not have.
With the help of France, we were able to win the war and declare freedom, creating this amazing country that was solace for those wanting solace. America has been through many hurdles but we have always fought for a better country, for equality, and for freedom. These traits, in my opinion, have been lost throughout the years.
For a while now I have not written or spoken my opinion when it comes to politics. I come from a bright red state that doesn’t see why blue is even on the map. It is not just talking in person that has halted my opinion from coming out. When you log on to any social media, you see hatred fill the screen. For every one opinion, there are thousands of hatful comments following from both sides. I am not here to hate upon your opinion; if you support our President then I have no problems with you.
We have forgotten that America was created because of difference of opinion. This is what makes us unique and special; we have the freedom to express how we feel without the worry of judgment. It is possible to have a discussion about politics without spreading hatred into the conversation. A difference of opinion is what helps all of us create change in the world. If we all felt the same way we would never have the potential to move forward.
Now we look at difference as a bad thing. Our immigration laws have become so twisted when we ourselves were once immigrants fleeing from a country to find peace. The videos of people spouting evil towards a different race are all over the internet. Do you see Native Americans spouting that type of hatred towards us? After all, this country was their land to begin with; if we really want to play the ‘who belongs here’ game.
Without immigration in America, we would not have won the Revolutionary War, we would not have the Statue of Liberty, we would not even be America. It is hard to look at America as an independent country when we turn away people without a second glance and then bash the people who stand up and say, “I don’t think we should be doing this.”
For this 4th of July, I will be celebrating by standing up for my beliefs even if I get pushed down. I will remember what my ancestors did to give us the freedoms we have and mourn the individuals who died for us to call ourselves Americans. I will not turn away from someone who looks different from me or was not born in this country just because I was lucky enough to be born in America. After all, they are just fighting for freedoms the same way we did in the 1700s.
If you read this and feel the urge to bash, insult, or treat me like trash because of my opinion then you have the freedom to. As a child I was taught to never tear people down and to never treat people badly just because they treat you badly. No mean replies will follow because I have no hatred in my heart. Change does not come from hatred; it comes from love, perseverance, and standing up no matter how many times you are pushed down.