Roundup of June 2018 Posts

“Counting the cars on the New Jersey Turnpike
They’ve all come to look for America”

Simon and Garfunkel

America Divided, red state, blue state, tribalismThese days I feel like we’re all looking for America. Some people are searching for the country they remember from an idealized past. That’s a country where people like them ran the show and everyone else got what was allowed or left over. Others are seeking an America of the future, where everyone can just get along and live our lives without the shadows of fear, hatred, and violence darkening our days.

And some would like to go back just a few years to where we had respect for one another, decency in our daily activities, accountability for our actions, leadership by elected officials, and courtesy when dealing with one another.

More Divided Than Ever

Old American FlagToday is Independence Day, when we celebrate the birth of the United States of America. It feels like we are less united that we have been in a long time.

We form tribes under red and blue colors and defend territory with increasing hostility. We challenge and attack online and in print. We avoid people, even family, who support the country’s most divisive president ever—or not.  We call names: libtard, snowflake, idiot, racist, deplorable, fascist, Trumpster, teabagger, extremist, wingnut.

Worse, there’s no end in sight. We seem to be sliding further downhill every day.

“Good morning, America
How are you?
Say don’t you know me? I’m your native son
I’m the train they call the city of New Orleans
And I’ll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done”

City of New Orleans
Willie Nelson

Celebrating America’s Birthday

Boston Pops, Hatch Shell, Esplanade, Fourth of July, Roundup of June 2018 Posts

Boston Pops at the Hatch Shell

Perhaps on this one day, we can focus on celebrating American’s birthday. We can all eat hot dogs and watermelon, go to parades and the beach, listen to patriotic music, watch fireworks, get sunburned, and think a little about what it took to create this country.

We were such underdogs that it amazes me the 13 original colonies succeeded in beating the power of the British Empire at all.

  • If you live near Boston, you can get a reminder of that effort by going on Boston By Foot’s “Footloose on the Freedom Trail” tour. This three-hour guided walk runs from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm and covers the entire Freedom Trail. It starts at the State House on Beacon Street and ends at “Old ironsides,” the U.S.S. Constitution, the oldest commissioned warship in the U.S. Navy. Wear comfortable shoes and bring water.
  • If you have the time and the dedication, you can stake out a space on the Esplanade and wait for tonight’s Boston Pops Fourth of July concert at the Hatch Shell. If you are just thinking about going now, though, it’s probably too late. Good spaces go fast. Settle for watching it on TV, and seeing Rachel Patten sing her popular tune, “Fight Song.” It couldn’t be more appropriate.

And if you’re just going to chill in your backyard or stay cool in the AC somewhere, here’s a summary of all June 2018 posts on The Next Phase Blog.

Roundup of June 2018 Posts

Animals and Wildlife

Boston and History

Business and Technology

Earth and the Environment

Health and Safety

Lifestyle and Culture

Food and Cooking

Friends and Family

Grab a beer or a lemonade and catch up. We’ll keep writing. And Happy Independence Day to us all! 

“Everywhere around the world
They’re coming to America
Every time that flag’s unfurled
They’re coming to America
Got a dream to take them there
They’re coming to America
Got a dream they’ve come to share
They’re coming to America”

Neil Diamond

Boston, Esplanade, Hatch Shell, Boston Pops, Fourth of July

Boston’s Esplanade on the Fourth of July