The 4th of July is important here at the Unified Republic of Stars, the reason least of which is that I’m an American myself and I borrowed (nee stole) a great deal of American history to build the URS. I did so because I find the United States a particularly inspiring place. For all its faults, I still believe that the United States offers unlimited opportunity and freedom to its citizens versus anywhere else.
Of course, the United States is not without its faults. We convict far too many innocents and don’t hold those that do accountable. We give up more and more freedoms in the name of security and yet we still claim to hold to the “rugged individualist” ethos that this country was built on. And we allow petty bureaucrats to tyrannize us through illegal uses of police powers.
And this is not to mention the constant fear we have of predators despite the fact that the crime rate keeps falling. Of course, we keep passing new laws that end up convicting more people of doing things they had no idea was illegal because of these laws but that doesn’t stop them from being passed anyway.
America, as much as I love it, I believe is on a downslide.
But, because this is the 4th of July, I would prefer to think positive rather than negative. The United States doesn’t have to slide all the way into state control of everything. As much as there’s been a reaction toward state and police control, there could equally be a reaction against the same and perhaps we might see something similar to how people reacted to COINTELPRO.
The truth is, no one knows.
In the Unified Republic of Stars, I’ve chosen to take the darker route. The route where government is involved in almost every aspect of one’s life and this leads to people wanting to flee to the colonies despite the hardships encountered simply to be free. I did this not because I want the United States and the world to go in this direction but because I think it makes for a good conflict a lot of people can understand.
On the other side, I also don’t believe it’s impossible.
Even within the URS, the federal government passes the New Age of Morality Act which brings the government into everyone’s lives in a way no one would have believed imaginable. I drew inspiration directly from Prohibition, which thankfully was repealed, but the “War on Drugs” has not and see the way that’s effected all of our lives.
So, on this 4th of July, I think it’s appropriate to give thanks that those of us who live in this country have the privilege to do so. But, on the other side, I believe we should take into account that which means the most to us who live here and decide if, especially in the last ten years, this country is headed in the direction we’d like it to.
Because tyranny doesn’t just appear. People have to let it. Remember that the month of July was named for Julis Caesar, who essentially ended the Republican period of Rome with a lot of precedent that came before as an aide.
Happy 4th of July. I plan on roasting some meat in celebration and launching a few fireworks of my own in spite of regulations that say they’re too dangerous for me. After all, it’s my life and if I don’t effect anyone else’s I should be able to do as I want. That‘s what freedom means to me.