It is totally preposterous and disgraceful that Donald Trump is insisting on wasting tax dollars for a military parade on Independence Day in Washington, DC.
There has never been a national military parade on any holiday, and to use July 4th as an opportunity to promote his own grandeur is obscene beyond belief.
It also could damage the roads of the capital city, and makes Independence Day a political event, when it is supposed to be a moment of celebrating American liberty.
Holding such a parade copies what is done in totalitarian nations, and we do not need to flaunt our military might on the day that represents freedom and democracy.
Hopefully, the turnout will be lower than normal, and the networks should not televise his political speech, glorifying his disgraceful violations of civil liberties, including the disgrace of the mistreatment of migrant women and children at our southern borders.
On this day in 1961, three days before leaving the Presidency, President Dwight D. Eisenhower, the last military career President we have had, warned of the dangers of the “Military-Industrial Complex” interfering with the basic civil liberties of our nation, and undermining our sense of privacy from government intrusion.
Tragically, that “Military-Industrial Complex” warning has come true, as we have seen surveillance programs by the National Security Agency and Central Intelligence Agency, on all citizens, due to the fight against terrorism since September 11, 2001.
Barack Obama, who criticized the early stages of this intrusion under George W. Bush, has doubled down on what Bush has done, and expanded it, although today, he is giving a speech offering limitations on such intrusions, without giving up the right and authority of the federal government to continue to do what they have been doing, which was revealed by Edward Snowden.
So the issue of liberty versus security continues to be a divisive issue, which will have a deleterious effect on the legacy and historical image of Barack Obama, with the possibility that, in the long term, he will be given slack by scholars, much like Abraham Lincoln has been treated by many experts, in his violations of civil liberties during the Civil War, 150 years ago, a time when our nation was in equal, if not greater, danger!
On this day in 1798, the Congress passed and President John Adams signed the Sedition Act, curtailing freedom of speech under the First Amendment, leading to prosecution of journalists and political critics, including a sitting member of Congress.
Repealed under Thomas Jefferson, this Sedition Act remains a black mark on American history as the first violation by the US government against the First Amendment, unfortunately followed by other such violations, including the Sedition Act of 1918 under President Woodrow Wilson, and the USA Patriot Act under President George W. Bush in 2001.
This does not include other violations of civil liberties under numerous Presidents, including Abraham Lincoln in the Civil War, Franklin D. Roosevelt in the Second World War, and Harry Truman in the Cold War era, among others.
This anniversary is a reminder that the battle for the First Amendment remains one that must be continually fought!