Columnist Jonathan Grass of The Huntsville Times in Alabama has written a marvelous article called Some ‘facts’ about July 4 you may not have known.
He first reminds us of the meaning of that most “pressing summer circumstance [which is nearly] upon us [called] Independence Day…the day that commemorates our breaking away from the harsh yoke of tyranny. Sort of.”
Mr. Grass recalls that “our country used to be under the rule of Great Britain. Of course, the harshest rules the British had at the time were overstuffed wigs and bad tea. In other words, it was hell.”
You note, however, that Mr. Grass neglects to cite the horrid hats that were imposed upon men in those days, such as cocked hats worn by soldiers, and described in H.M. Royal Clothing Warrant 1768 thusly:
The hats of the Serjeants to be laced with silver. Those of the Corporals and Private Men, to have a white tape binding. The breadth of the whole to be one inch and a quarter; and no more to be on the back part of the brim, than what is necessary to sew it down. To have black cockades.
Freedom from cocked hats! God Bless America.
Oh, by the way, the article goes on to say that “historians will tell you the reason Independence Day is observed on July 4 is ‘anyone’s guess’.” You see,
After a few minor adjustments, the most famous being Thomas Jefferson’s written denouncement of slavery being omitted from the document on the grounds that it was “too sensitive an issue to be addressed by us, we’re only Congress,” the Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 2, 1776, but it wasn’t signed by most of the delegates until Aug. 2, who needed the extra time to learn to spell.
Anyway, it’s nearly time to show our patriotism in time-honored fashion: “barbecues, beer, concerts, parades, beer on parade, and baseball with overpriced stadium beer”, fire-works exploding all the while. Celebrate your freedom, says Jonathan Grass, “because come July 5, it’ll be time to get those Christmas preparations started.”
Thanks for reading,
CEO Hartford York
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