We're shown what others are doing, maybe in an attempt to make us think that that's how we should be too (how many political figures try to tell how many others who is a "real" patriot and what a "real" patriot looks like or does?).
And yet that flies in the face of this very day - a day intended to celebrate independence.
To me, independence necessarily includes dissent - as to what independence means, what this day means, what being a patriot looks like and is. Dissent has more than one meaning, but at its root, it means to have a different opinion. Sometimes that is voiced, sometimes it's not.
Not everyone is as comfortable with having or voicing dissent. And certainly not everyone wields dissent in the same way or with the same intentions. But if you remove dissent - literally seek to have it not exist at all, you also erase the catalyst that created our country in the first place.
Where'd I get this crazy notion? From Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who knows a few things about dissenting:
Ginsburg speaks about the key role of dissenting opinions at the Supreme Court. "Dissents speak to a future age. It's not simply to say, 'My colleagues are wrong and I would do it this way.' But the greatest dissents do become court opinions and gradually over time their views become the dominant view. So that's the dissenter's hope: that they are writing not for today but for tomorrow."Just in case you've ever wondered why I'd bother.
Happy Fourth of July.