I'm having a nostalgia attack for the Fourth of July's past...6 or 7 years past....when our son, born at the end of the Cold War and patriotic to his child's core, spent the mornings decorating his scooter with red white and blue ribbons for the neighborhood parade, the afternoon playing and singing patriotic songs (a fascination that went back to his preschool years,) and the evening hosting "his" fireworks party.
He taught his parents, flag-shy since their own Viet Nam-era coming of age, to enjoy being patriots. Oh, always patriots with a memory, but still, for a time patriots, cautiously optimistic for a nation which had (at least mostly) taken the broad straight road in the world towards peace, justice, and neighborliness. We hung our flag out with the rest of our neighbors for a decade there. It was delicious.
This year it appears that only one neighbor has a flag out. Most of our neighbors have become quite elderly. And I suppose that even many conservatives OD'ed on flags after we endured the red,white, and gray tattered items people insisted on flying from their cars for months after 9/11. And at least some I suppose, have, like us, become non-patriots on account of unjust war, torture, military atrocities, and the blindest-take-all approach our elected leaders and their cronies are taking to the ecological crisis which is looming for our world.
It's more than nostalgia attacking me this morning, actually. It's a deep sadness for a national road not taken, a fear for the future for a near military aged child, for a near bankrupt nation, and for a near crisis blue-green world. Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to thee.