4th of July Parade, or Army™ Recruitment Seminar

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THIS YEAR’S 4TH OF JULY PARADE was not what I expected. I
remember that in the past the parade was for kids. It was
mostly about marching bands, community groups, guys
in the little cars throwing out candy and stuff like that.
This year’s parade seemed more like a recruitment tool for
the military. There were at least 200 or 300 soldiers
marching in uniform. Most of the floats were promoting
war in some way, and the crowd helped make the parade
even more militaristic by standing and cheering each time
a soldier came by.
My dad and I were the only people on the Michigan to
Pennsylvania block that stood up when the Iraq Veterans
Against the War came by, and a lot of people gave us mean
looks when we did. At least there was an anti-war float,
even if it was the only one. However, t there were at least
20 pro-war floats. Many of the kids were age 6 or younger,
and at that age they are very impressionable. So, the message
the parade was giving them is that ‘war was good.’ In
12 years these kids will be old enough to make decisions,
and if they are surrounded by the message that ‘war is
good’ then they will promote war too, when they are older.
Many of the floats were really ridiculous, and scary.
There was an anti-abortion float. It compared how many
American babies weren’t born because of abortions to the
casualties of every war from World War II to the current
Gulf War. They left out the Central American wars of the
80s, and they also left out how many foreign people died
in each war. For example, in the Vietnam War, they said
that around 80,000 people died. In reality, more than a
million people died, if you include the Vietnamese.
When the “Guns Save Lives” float came by with the
Statue of Liberty holding an illegal assault rifle, I was really
mad. The Statue of Liberty is a welcoming symbol of
freedom, and normally people don’t welcome each other
with a deadly weapon. In front of it was a mounted
machine gun on an army Jeep™ that they shot blanks off
of over and over again.
This year’s parade was mostly celebrating the military,
war, guns, and nationalism. It seemed to me like
the military was showing off its stupid gun collection,
and trying to impress and brainwash young children
like Adolph Hitler did. I’m not saying the army is using
Hitler’s plan, but it had that same feeling. They also
shot off every other gun like crazy. Overall, it seems like
the army went to an all time low by showing off their
guns to little kids, and basically trying to start recruiting
them now, to get them to join up when they turn
18. This “parade” wasn’t like a celebration, it was more
like propaganda.

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