Thursday, July 4, 2013

When Sparks Fly 4th of July Blog Hop

It seems appropriate that as I write this, I'm listening to the soundtrack to 1776. I would so love to see this
live someday. I wish I could find a production using the movie cast, but alas that will never happen. Guess that's why we have DVD's lol  William Daniels, Howard daSilva, Ken amazing would that be? And of course, I never think about watching the movie, or getting it from the library, until the night before when it's obviously too late. Even if I purchased it from Amazon, it wouldn't get here until after the fact.

But there you go.

So today is the 4th of July, America's birthday. Just think, if those people who chose to rebel against the king had not been successful, we'd all be speaking with an accent and singing a far different tune. After all, history is written by the winners. Thus it tends to be a little prejudiced.

This country isn't perfect, but which one is? None of them. Because all countries are made up of people and people just aren't perfect. But some countries are nicer to live in than others, depending on the people. This country has problems, undoubtedly, and it's not a simple matter of politics, because these problems exist no matter which party is in office. The system itself is not perfect, and it invites abuse, which some are quick to take advantage of. There are far too many people getting fat off the government, and politicians who work short hours for big pay, and have no idea of the real lives of their constituents.

On the other hand, there are the people who take advantage of government programs - families who live entirely on welfare and never attempt to do any better, cheaters and lazy asses. It burns me to see the ads from groups that offer to intervene between taxpayers who owe more than $10k and the IRS to get these taxes reduced. Does no one see a problem with that?  Pretend you are the government, and you expect to receive x amount of dollars for your revenue, and from that you plan your expenses. What happens when you don't get all the money you're owed? Do you do have to hold off on paying some of those bills? Real people do, yes, but somehow the government manages to spend what it doesn't have. So yes, not paying your taxes is problematic for all of us. So why do so many people think the name of the game is keep money away from the IRS? Have you forgotten? The IRS is the government, and WE are the government. You only hurt everyone in the long run.

A great and wonderful thing happened recently. DOMA was struck one. Well, half a great thing. Because there is still part of it that has gone unchallenged (as a lawyer friend of mine explained to me, when I naively thought the problem was solved). Apparently they didn't tackle the crux of the matter - the part where gay marriage that is legal in one state is legal in all of them. That is what needs to happen, that's what I've always said.  The states that don't do so are blurring the lines between government and religion, and need to stop meddling in that way. Marriage is a civil and legal union. (These same people need to butt the hell out of matters concerning women's reproductive rights as well).

At least we are moving in the right direction at last. In years to come, students will study this time, and the turmoil this issue has caused, and they will look at one another and shrug and ask what the big deal was, because by that time it will simply be accepted as right and natural. The same way that interracial marriages, once illegal, and looked down upon, are very much a part of our society, and accepted by most people (except the die-hard bigots).

It's hard enough to run a family, with its diverse elements, much less a nation of millions, with people having their own ideas about the way things should be. The important thing is to respect one another, and to respect the rights of others. To feed the hungry, provide medical care to the sick, and shelter the homeless. Just think if we took all the monies and energies spent in the battle for equality on both sides and used them for these causes, what great good could be done? It's all well and good to help other nations, and I do think we should, but you have to take care of your own first.

There are things in this country that could benefit from change, such as the school systems, the prisons, and the government. But change takes time, these things did not break over night and they won't be fixed in a day. As long as we work at it together, we can get it done.

 In some countries, I could not even say such things about the powers that be, because these are freedoms that are denied to their citizens. Which is one of the great things about America. We have freedom of speech.

So Happy Birthday, America - you're looking good.

Today is the first day of the When Sparks Fly 4th of July Blog Hop. To visit the other members of the hop, go here For my part in this blog hop, I'm offering the following prizes: three winners will receive a copy of anything from my backlist, and one winner will receive a $10 Amazon GC.

How do you enter, you ask?  It's simple. Comment on this blog and tell me something about this country and what it means to you. Don't forget your email address, so I can contact you if you win.

This blog hop runs until the 8th. I'll announce the winners some time after that. Good luck and start hopping!

Until next time, take care!

♥ Julie.


  1. This year the answer is easy - it's freedom. For the first time in a long time I truly feel and appreciate the freedom we enjoy. The freedom to marry whomever I love and to enjoy the same freedoms and rights as every other married couple gives things a sense of completeness for me and my family. So that's mine answer and I'm sticking to it. :-)

    happy Fourth!


  2. I do enjoy my freedom here. It does come with a price but it is worth it.
    debby236 at gmail dot com

  3. I enjoyed reading your post & thoughts. Thank you!
    I most enjoy my freedom & the opportunities we have here in the USA. And I agree that no country is perfect, just like people & life. But the thing that grinds me the most is the abuse of the welfare system. I feel that it's good to a point, but some just get to comfortable & lazy with it. We have the capability to make our lives better & different & some chose not to.

    JessieL62 AT comcast DOT net

  4. Happy 4th to you friend. I wish I hadn't forgotten to put my name on the list of participants for this last blog hop Drea is hosting.

    anyway I'd like to participate. please enter me

  5. As much as I may disagree with my country's handling of certain affairs, I am still proud of what we have accomplished in such a short period of time. People forget that we are a young country compared to so many others.


  6. I like the idea that you can always start over in America...there still seems to be less inbred cynicism in our foundation, in spite of it all.


  7. The thing I love about this country is that anyone has the chance to be better. No matter what family you were born into you can still make something great of yourself :)

  8. I like the idea that you can always start over in America.

  9. You have the chance to be whomever you want to be, and the freedom to enjoy the life that you choose.

  10. I like that in this country you go to school and afterwards can choose the career that you want to follow.

    sassychassy333 at gmail dot com

  11. This country has a very diverse population! And gorgeous scenery, also diverse.

    brendurbanist at gmail dot com

  12. I appreciate the history and the diversity of cultures here. 1776 is a fun musical, I agree!

    awindandbooks at gmail dot com

  13. I love the multiculturalism

  14. I love the ideas of freedom and equal opportunity. That's what persuaded my family to obtain citizenship in this country. Thanks for the giveaway.


  15. Freedom. So many people come from so many different places just so that they can finally be themselves, do what they want and try to better themselves. This country marks a new start for those who have been oppressed in someway. My own family came for that very reason and we couldn't be happier for choosing to do so.

    humhumbum AT yahoo DOT com

  16. The US has it's share of problems, and like you said, no country is perfect. But when I listen to the international news I really appreciate the fact that I CAN express my opinions in a public forum without fear of reprisal.

    Thanks for the amazing giveaway!
    elizabeth @ bookattict . com
    GFC: BookAttict

  17. Loving your post- so patriotic! :D Happy to live in such a great country.

  18. I think about how fortunate we are who live here in the USA, with the freedoms and opportunities that we have.

    strive4bst(AT) yahoo(Dot) com

  19. Without a doubt our freedom, I can't imagine living anywhere else but here.



  21. Freedom!

    Thanks for the great giveaway!!

  22. So glad to read your thoughts, Julie. I'm so with you on how much there is that needs to be worked on in this country, but I still think it's a great place to leave. Maybe that's the thing I love the most about the United States, how much hope we have, that spirit that has not been snuffed out. We still have high ideals and want to reach them. Yes, some will always take advantage of the system, but I truly believe we have more people who would like America to be the great place we imagine it can be.

    caroaz [at] ymail [dot] com

  23. Definitely freedom. Enjoyed your post.
    skpetal at hotmail dot com

  24. I like so much about this country :) The ability to express myself without fear (usually ;) ), the chance to live the American dream and be whomever I'm destined to be!

    Thanks for a great post :)


  25. I love our freedom and freedom of speech. I couldn't imagine living somewhere that I couldn't speak my mind.
    sstrode at scrtc dot com

  26. I love the freedoms that we have in this country. We have so many more freedoms that in other countries, especially if you are female or a person of color. Sure, it is not perfect. We do not have equal rights for all men, but we are making progress. Thanks for sharing and participating.

    SophieBonaste at gmail dot com

  27. Hi! I love the freedom we have. We can read what we want, watch what we want, express ourselves, etc. Thank you for the fun hop and giveaway! :)

  28. I never realized how much I appreciated the U.S. until I was overseas while in the Navy and not able to celebrate the 4th like I usually do. That's when you know how lucky we are in the U.S.

    Great question for the hop!


  29. Thanks for the hop! I love our freedom of expression. There are so many countries where you're killed just for being different.

    Helena Ferrell