Donald Trump’s planned seizure of the typically patriotic and usually apolitical Fourth of July holiday is likely to have the same effect as being force fed mashed bananas. There is a growing movement to protest the hostile takeover of America’s birthday. Trump plans to re-name the event “A Salute to America.” Does he not know that the 4th of July is already a holiday?
Trump has been seeking the ego boost of a military parade since his theft of the presidency more than 800 days ago. His vision truly came to light when visiting Macron in Paris and experiencing the Bastille Day Parade in France. We can almost see the thought bubbles over his head: “They will love me if they see me in a parade. I deserve a parade.”
When the first attempt at a military parade failed to happen due to predicted costs exceeding eighty million dollars, the idea remained in Trump’s head. When Trump announced his plan for a special event on the Fourth of July, it was almost impossible that Trump did not comprehend the significance and purity of the holiday. Democrats in Congress have asked Trump to change his plans to no avail; the Trump administration is moving forward with his plan to address the nation on the Fourth of July.
Although Trump has promised that it will be an apolitical speech, it is difficult to believe that the Fourth of July won’t turn into a Hillary and Mueller bashing event. The plan to sabotage the historic fireworks that occur each year on the Mall, near the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument seems inevitable at this point. There is talk of both protests and boycotts, and we will see if the size of the protest crowd exceeds that of Trump’s inauguration. There will be “Baby Trump” balloons for sale, and even a warning from the American Pyrotechnics Association to the U.S. trade representative that Trump’s proposed tariffs on Chinese goods will likely limit any fireworks shows as soon as Labor Day and into the foreseeable future, including New Year’s Eve.
For families who have attended the event for decades, there is a sadness, as well as plans for a second fireworks show away from the Trump speech, and even a request for a protest permit to the National Park Service from a group seeking to fly the huge Baby Trump balloon in clear view of Trump. The entrepreneurial balloon salesman has set up an Eventbrite page.