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Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Guard the Border Blogburst

Well, better late than never. Here it is... (Personal commentary below)

By Heidi at Euphoric Reality

Last year, I experienced a Fourth of July that I never want to repeat. I wrote about it, but at the time, I don't think my experience registered on anyone's radar. Here's part of the description as I posted it last year:

...all day, I was looking forward to the famous Freedom Over Texas Celebration in Houston - one of the top 10 patriotic shows and fireworks displays in the country. I was determined to brave the crowds (which my husband and I typically loathe) with kiddos in tow, in order to enjoy the culminating holiday of our nation's heritage. We drove an hour to downtown Houston, spent 20 minutes looking for parking, and finally stepped into the crowds to move toward the center of the Celebration.

Here is what I saw as I crossed Allen Parkway near Buffalo Bayou:

There were NO 4th of July decorations - NONE. No red, white, and blue - anywhere.
There were no American flags.
No one was dressed in red, white, and blue except me and my kids.
There were no patriotic songs.
There was no indication of patriotic pride or nationalism in any way.

No one - not one person around us - spoke English.
The music that was blasting through the loudspeakers was Mexican mariachi or some such.
Home made pig skins were sold in baggies - and screeching kids in dirty clothes were hawking water bottles out of grubby coolers.
I saw more green Mexican flags and paraphernalia than anything American-themed.

What is this - Houston, Mexico?! Had I mistakenly ended up in some grungy street carnival in Little Mexico, instead of one of the "Top 10 Patriotic Celebrations in the Country"! I knew that there was supposed to be military equipment displays somewhere in the center (which I was making a bee-line for), along with stages for Clint Black and LeAnn Rimes. I'm not a country-western aficionado, but I knew that I could most likely expect a moving patriotic song or two. As the crowds surged toward the Freedom Celebration, my family and I lagged more and more behind. Hot, sweaty, and rudely jostled in the rowdy crowd - I grew more and more angry. Looking around, I realized that no one seemed to be there to celebrate the 4th of July. It seemed like any generic public fiesta - just one more reason to party. I stopped walking and finally acknowledged the fact that whatever "celebracion" was going on around us had nothing to do with America. I was far beyond disappointed - I was furious.

We left.

I took a lot of heat in the comments from people who objected to the fact that I objected to a Mexican-themed Fourth of July. But others wrote in comments and via email that they had seen and experienced a similar hi-jacking of our national holiday; they seemed more bewildered than furious. "How did this happen? When did this happen?!" There was no real public indignation.

Fast forward to 2006. This year, the in-your-face waving of the Mexican flag will have much more significance considering the politically-charged events of the past year. In a year that has seen illegal aliens gleefully desecrate Old Glory, and raise the Mexican flag over our own, such an offensive display is guaranteed to raise the ire of red-blooded Americans. After a year's worth of heavy-handed demands for the rights and privileges of full citizenship, illegal aliens and AINOs (Americans In Name Only) may feel emboldened to wave the Mexican flag during our Independence Day celebrations - just as they did last year with no public outcry.

I, for one, won't leave a 4th of July celebration like I did last year - furious but silent. I will say something to anyone who flaunts a foreign flag during our Independence Day. I want them to know it's inappropriate, deliberately incendiary, and offensive to people who deeply love this country and our valiant flag. This year, I have a feeling I won't be standing alone.




This has been a production of the Guard the Borders Blogburst. It was started by Euphoric Reality, and serves to keep immigration issues in the forefront of our minds as we're going about our daily lives and continuing to fight the War on Terror. If you are concerned with the trend of illegal immigration facing our country, join our Blogburst! Just send an email with your blog name and url to euphoricrealitynet at gmail dot com.

While I agree with the sentiments written by Heidi in this post, I must publicly disagree with the notion of going to any public or private Independence Day celebration that includes fireworks, as odd as that sounds to many. As much as I would dislike celebrating the "birth" of this nation surrounded by Mexican flags and mariachi music, I find it equally offensive to celebrate Independence while surrounded by pyrotechnic novelties forcibly manufactured by schoolchildren living oppressive Chinese regime.

Take a look:
It turns out Chinese fireworks made by forced child labor have come under investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor, according to Carl Olson, chairman of State Department Watch, a foreign policy watchdog group based in Washington.

The massive use of Chinese schoolchildren in the manufacturing of fireworks destined for the United States and, ironically, patriotic celebrations of freedom and justice, came to light following the explosion that killed 42 at the elementary school in Jiangxi province.

The children were tasked with daily producing 1,000 firecrackers each and the money from the business went to school officials.

While this article is "old" news, there's still far too much truth hidden there for me to be willing to participate in this particular "American" tradition.

Like most American businesses, fireworks manufacturing has lost out to countries with cheaper labor and lower safety standards.

So, while I will celebrate Independence day in my own quiet, but wholly American manner, it will include neither Mexican flags nor fireworks this year or any year I can help it.


At 7/05/2006 9:19 AM, Anonymous And Another Thing said...

And here I thought the loss of so many jobs here to China was going to result in democracy, freedom, blah blah. Apparently in the socialist paradise of China, some are more equal than others.

Thanks for the info tip on the fireworks origins. Didn't know; now I do.

At 7/14/2006 4:30 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Yes, China is still China, despite "our" jobs having gone there. And it's still a place I wouldn't want to live.

As for the fireworks...I must admit I was surprised when I learned how horrid the conditions were where they're made. It just takes the fun right out of it for me.


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