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July 03, 2009

Independence Day Weekend

Independence Day is my favorite holiday, bar none. Not being a religious person Christmas and Easter just don't have the same meaning for me as they do for the devout. Memorial and Veterans Day are important holidays I appreciate but not having much family history around the military, it's not quite as personal. I can respect these holidays and what they mean but the feel is not quite the same for me as it is for others.

I am however a devout American. Independence Day is the day I get deep down in my bones.

So as someone who loves the history of this country I was saddened but not surprised to this story on how little some HS kids know about this country. It got me thinking about how I came to be interested in history and what makes America special. This post from Ace gave me a hint.

I went to that miracle of copyright infringement, Youtube, and checked out some of the Schoolhouse Rock episodes dealing with US history and now I realize what an impact they had upon me. Yeah, the music and animation are hokey and outdated but they kind of were then too. Below are a few of my favorites.

If you are of a certain age, you might appreciate them for their nostalgic value and if you are younger (looks at Gabe), I think you'll be amazed that a broadcast network (ABC) at one time aired things so unapologetically pro-American. Sure there maybe a quibble here or there but this is all pre PC stuff, before the boomer got full control of the culture and they are all about the great and exceptional nature of America.

If I had kids, they would be watching these, they are great antidotes to what we teach kids about America today.

And of course, the greatest of them all....

If you still aren't convinced these are great, check out how they dealt with the westward expansion of the US and immigration. Can you imagine anything being produced for kids today unapologetically supporting Manifest Destiny as "Elbow Room" does?

How would you like the next round of Amnesty be fought on these grounds?

And lastly...individual achievement used to be celebrated. Note, none of the inventions trumpeted here invovled government prizes, underwriting or regulations.

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posted by DrewM. at 10:47 AM

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