To celebrate American Independence Day, the town Red Bank has been host to New Jersey’s largest and most spectacular fireworks display for over 50 years. This year however, due to costs, the town had cancelled the celebration.
I understand that times are economically tough, but to forgo the fireworks display is quite frankly, un-American. The Fourth of July is a commemoration of our nation’s birth – a patriotic event that honors the very freedoms on which our country was founded. It is a yearly reminder of America’s greatness, celebrated by the time-honored tradition of the fireworks display.
For me this year, July 4th came and went; passing through like any other Wednesday. I was left feeling unfulfilled and unsatisfied. I felt robbed of that patriotic moment that we all feel when watching the fireworks; that emotional stir – that American pride.
With lingering disappointment, I checked the reported costs of the fireworks display. The decision to cancel the fireworks was made after the cost estimates for a 2012 show came in at $275,000 up $25,000 for the 2011 show. It has been estimated that 150,000 people attend the Red Bank fireworks.
When I discovered the costs, my disappointment turned into anger. How could something so sacred and symbolic be so easily discarded? But perhaps the cancellation of the fireworks has symbolism of its own – a depiction of our rights and liberties slowly dwindling away. Something to think about.