Oh Say Can You See...
"My dream is of a place and a time where America will once again be seen as the last best hope of earth." Abraham Lincoln
The Rockets Red Glare...
Big 4th of July weekend. Philly Blog Land--as I'm sure is true of other Live8 venues--has been pretty much All Live8 All the Time.
No question, it's exciting. It's international news. It's Music For A Good Cause. It's Check Your Egos At The Door (remember that from Live Aid?). And in Philly it's part of a hat trick: Live8 Concert. Welcome America Festival, including an R&B Concert with Ruben Studdard and Stephanie Mills. And the grand finale on July 4th -- Philadelphia Freedom Concert, headlined by Elton John.
Lots of other things to see and do here in Freedom Capitol USA, home of the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, the Declaration of Independence, the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights ... not to mention American Bandstand, Bill Cosby and the famous Philly Cheesesteak.
But still. But still.
The Bombs Bursting in Air...
The President's speech this week really put a damper on my patriotic zeal this 4th of July. It's hard to celebrate the birth of genuine freedom in America while so many are dying in a bogus political quest for it in Iraq.
I just can't stop thinking that while we're stamping and clapping to music in major cities around the world, American soldiers are stepping on land mines in dangerous fields and towns on the other side of the globe. And while we're oooing and ahhhing at all the pretty fireworks in celebration of freedom -- real fireworks are snatching freedom away in a hailstorm of death and destruction.
It's important to celebrate the beginning of our country's history. It's vital to support an end to world poverty. It's critical to support an end to AIDS. But when do we get to celebrate an end to the war in Iraq?
I don't mean to be such a downer. And I'll watch and applaud and cheer and try to enjoy what promises to be a perfectly beautiful weekend here. But in a tiny corner of my mind, I'll also be thinking about our soldiers and wishing for them the ultimate Freedom: to come home alive.