the float (4th) of july

I have a lot of problems with the way that the 4th of July is celebrated and the attitudes of nationalism, pride, and ignorance that arise with a vengence on Independence Day. I am thankful that I have freedom as a white, cis-gender woman who grew up Christian and is dating a man. But my freedom and my gratitude cannot shadow the suffering and fear that too many people still live with in this country. I don't have to fear for my life when I am pulled over. I don't have to hope that my child won't be shot for playing with a toy gun in public. Violence and exploitation still rule this nation; White, Western imperialism should not be celebrated. Instead of being a day of humble gratitude where we look forward to all of the work that still needs to be done and take responsibility as people with privilege to make that work come into fruition, the 4th of July becomes a celebration of white privilege, binge drinking, and power. And that is what I have a problem with.

So, this 4th of July, we sailed and marveled at the natural world. We jumped into the water and ate bread and cheese in different forms and belly laughed. We hugged and splashed, and those who had work off used their day to spend time with their loved ones. We drank tasty brews and set up a hammock on the mast of my boat. We made new friends and leaned our heads onto the shoulders of old ones. We floated, all day. We watched the fireworks quietly. And it was a good day. A strange day to celebrate and come together, but it was a good day nevertheless.

thank you, my dear Austin, for taking some of these photos. you are talented and i love you.