The REAL Independence Day

by John Washington on July 2, 2012

President John Adams

As Councilman Bob Littlefield says of Memorial Day, most folks think it’s National Barbeque Day. For many Zonies, the 4th of July is either a day to argue about whether fireworks should be used in the tinderbox that is our pre-monsoon desert, or it’s a weekend to spend out-of-the-heat on the Mogollon Rim or in San Diego.

This year the 4th of July [list of other historical events] falls on Wednesday. Always looking for an excuse to extend stays in cooler climes, many Zonie travelers left last Friday and won’t return until a week from today. Thus, Independence Day becomes a week-long holiday!

We celebrate remarkable men undertaking a bold action: Breaking away from the most formidable empire in the world to form a new nation that, despite occasional faults, shines as an example for all. Many of the Signers of the Declaration suffered great personal cost as a result, and knowing this risk they did it anyway.

A couple of interesting facts about Independence Day: It’s celebrated on the 4th of July because that’s the date that appears on the Declaration of Independence. However, the act of declaring independence actually occurred today, the 2nd of July. And most historians agree that the document wasn’t actually signed until about a month later.

President Thomas Jefferson

Being Arizonans, perhaps we should just declare an Independence Month, and go to the coast (or the mountains) to be free of the heat until we get some rain!

Meanwhile, there are two remaining opportunities to directly participate in the democratic processes that affect you most directly; there are Scottsdale City Council meetings tonight and tomorrow night. If it’s just too hot for you to get out, at least watch on Cox CityCable Channel 11 or streaming on your computer.

Afterward, I hope you have a safe holiday…and keep in mind that two of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, eventual presidents John Adams and Thomas Jefferson died on the 4th of July. Please take care of yourself if you remain here in the heat, and use caution if you are traveling. We need your to help with Scottsdale city government after the holiday!

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