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Fireworks Are ‘Pretend War’ That Make Us OK With Real War

Did you know that fireworks are actually a “propaganda campaign that inures us—especially the children among us—to the real wars half a world away”?

That’s according to Bill Bigelow of Rethinking Schools magazine and the Zinn Education Project, who calls fireworks “pretend war”:

Apart from the noise pollution, air pollution, and flying debris pollution, there is something profoundly inappropriate about blowing off fireworks at a time when the United States is waging war with real fireworks around the world. To cite just one example, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism in London found recently that U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan alone have killed more than 200 people, including at least 60 children. And, of course, the U.S. war in Afghanistan drags on and on.

Kyle Olson of Education Action Group calls BS on this:

Fireworks have been a staple of Independence Day celebrations since the earliest years of the republic. The tradition dates back to July 3, 1776, when John Adams wrote a letter to his wife, suggesting that that America’s birthday “ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.” …

The real problem is that too many Americans, particularly youngsters, have little idea what the Fourth of July commemorates. They light off fireworks because they think it’s fun, not because they have the first clue that they’re celebrating their nation’s independence.

That’s due to the influence of teachers like Bigelow. They would rather make students feel guilty about being Americans than encourage them to appreciate the great things about their nation.

Read Olson’s full article here.

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Greg spent several years as a technology policy reporter and editor for Warren Communications News in Washington, D.C., and guest host on C-SPAN’s “The Communicators.” Previously he led media and public relations at Seattle’s Discovery Institute, a free-market think tank. Greg is developing a Web series about a college newspaper, COPY, whose pilot episode was a semifinalist in the TV category for the Scriptapalooza competition in 2012. He graduated in 2001 with a B.A. from Seattle Pacific University, where he co-founded the alternative newspaper PUNCH and served as a reporter, editor and columnist for The Falcon.

Add to the Discussion

  • DJ1706

    “Zinn Education Project.” Lordy.

  • JAG39

    “Bill Bigelow taught high school social studies in Portland, Ore. for almost 30 years.”

    That accounts for the fact that Oregon has more than it’s share of uneducated morons. I am really glad that I went to school in the 40’s and 50’s. Most of the social studies teachers were still relatively knowledgeable about the history of this nation.