Don’t watch it.
Don’t spend a second of your Fourth of July on the gaudy, misguided, un-American and ego-soothing monstrosity that will be Trump’s Independence Day celebration. A military extravaganza created by a man-child that would soothe even the most craven dictators of the world — men who the U.S. president is now oddly friendly with.
But don’t watch it. Don’t let your children watch it. Don’t excuse it as normal behavior.
And for God’s sake, don’t ever pretend that this is normal for this country.
Because it’s not. In fact, it’s the opposite of what this country has always stood for, the opposite of how we’ve behaved, the opposite of the image we’ve portrayed to the world.
We’ve never needed to flex. Because the might of the U.S. has never been in question.
It still isn’t.
We’ve just managed to elect as president a man so damaged and deranged, so unapologetically insecure that he finds some weird level of satisfaction in watching the U.S. military parade past him, like a teenager on YouTube showing off his assault rifles and handguns.
A number of American presidents prior to Trump — both Republican and Democratic — have explained why this country doesn’t have such shows of military strength, but no one said it better than general-turned-President Dwight Eisenhower.
“Absolutely not,” Eisenhower told his aides, according to historian Michael Beschloss, when such a parade was proposed. “We, the United States, are seeking peace, we are the pre-eminent power on earth. For us to try to imitate what the Soviets are doing in Red Square would make us look weak.”
That’s why, on our Independence Day, we have celebrated not with tanks and marching soldiers, but with apple pie, hot dog eating contests, fireworks and beer.
Our Independence Day has been a time for us to celebrate the country we have, to gather with family and friends and laugh, to enjoy the freedoms and riches that this country provides.
What better way to demonstrate the values of freedom and democracy to the rest of the world than by celebrating our most important war victory with pie and songs rather than phony demonstrations of military might.
I guess it shouldn’t be a surprise that President Bone Spurs doesn’t understand this. Any man who would separate 4-month-old children from their parents, and stuff desperate and scared people into cages and treat them like animals, undoubtedly struggles to comprehend the basic tenets upon which this country was built and has maintained its standing for going on 250 years.
Kindness, compassion and love have been the values we’ve sold to the world, right up until the very moment we could no longer do so.
We took our role as the moral compass of the world so seriously that we planted a gigantic statue in our most famous harbor with a sign that encouraged the tired, the hungry, the poor, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free from any country to come to our door.
We welcomed the immigrant, and then told stories with pride of how this country gave them and their future generations immeasurable riches. We didn’t fear them, we didn’t demean them and we damn sure didn’t take their children and demoralize them.
Every day, it seems, Trump and his band of nazis and rapacious clowns seek to undermine another foundation of this country and demonstrate to the world that we are not that “beacon on a hill” that President Ronald Reagan described.
Thursday will be just the latest attempt by Trump to project a more callous, cruel and insecure America.
I’m begging you. Don’t help him.