In a July 3, 1776 letter to his wife Abigail, founding father John Adams wrote about how Independence Day should be celebrated. Adams explained,
I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.
In the years since, Americans have done their best to live up to Adams’s expectations by celebrating the Fourth of July with fireworks. According to the American Pyrotechnics Association, Americans spent $1.3 billion on illuminations in 2018, with $945 million of the total spent on consumer fireworks. As for the volume of pyrotechnics, Americans consumed 277.5 million lbs. of fireworks in 2018. Simply put, celebrating with fireworks is an integral part of and ubiquitous on Independence Day.
Never a group to tolerate the traditions of others, or to celebrate American freedom, Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety made clear this week that Americans have been commemorating Independence Day wrong.
On July 1, the gun control group tweeted out an image with the message “Consider gun violence survivors on the Fourth of July.” The image was accompanied by a further message that stated,
Every day, an average of 100 Americans are fatally shot & hundreds more are shot and injured. If you’re planning to set off fireworks to celebrate the 4th, consider letting members of your community know so those who might be sensitive to loud noises can prepare themselves.
There are those with a sensitivity to loud noises, including some veterans suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder. No one should go out of their way to exacerbate these individuals’ condition.
However, Everytown’s blanket admonishment raises a serious question, which was identified by Stephen Gutowski of the Washington Free Beacon. Gutowski tweeted, “This confuses me. Are there people in America that are unaware we set off fireworks on the 4th of July?”
It doesn’t take a cynic to suspect that Everytown’s Independence Day lecture isn’t about helping those with sensitivity to loud noises. The group has routinely sought to pervert cherished holidays in order to push its gun control agenda. In 2013, Everytown component Mayors Against Illegal Guns created a placemat that encouraged loved ones to argue about gun control during Thanksgiving dinner. The lame stunt was repeated the following year. Everytown supporters are encouraged to send anti-gun “holiday cards” to their members of congress.
Americans should strive to be safe and neighborly in their July 4th activities, but none should let a would-be oligarch and his political minions deter them from fun and legal celebrations. After all, Adams’s prescription for Independence Day observance was “from this Time forward forever more.”