1. Fireworks. Not so much the big professional shows (though really, you’ve seen one of these and you’ve pretty much seen them all). No, what I can’t stand is the amateur backyard/driveway jobs. Twice a year people get to detonate small explosives in residential areas. So twice a year I get to breathe in toxic smoke and feel my ears ringing because it’s “tradition.” Want some more reasons I hate fireworks?

But people are like SCTV’s Big Jim McBob and Billie Sol Hurok, and they want to see stuff blown up real good. Reason and compassion don’t enter into it.
2. Meat Meat Meat. I’m an ethical vegetarian and animal rights advocate. People eat tons of animal flesh–almost all of it from factory farms–for their Fourth of July barbecues. That’s all there is to it. By the way, here’s where all that meat comes from.
3. Blind Patriotism. I don’t necessarily have a problem with patriotism. What bothers me is the tendency Americans have to let their love of country veer off into nationalism and xenophobia. This leads to an inflated sense of self-importance as well as a blindness to reality and a distrust of dissent. OK, many nations do this, but I live in the U.S. so that’s what I’m familiar with. I just wish people would read some Howard Zinn, reflect a bit, and tone down the whole “American exceptionalism” thing.
Brandon Bosworth

Brandon Bosworth