There is a joke you can play on Americans. Ask them "What other countries have a 4th of July?" The answer is, of course, all of them.
One sad thing about being in Arizona is that fireworks are outlawed statewide. Given the tendency for this state to become a raging inferno, it is no surprise that that law exists. In general, the common populace is too irresponsible to safely handle explosive devices.
Which is sad. For me, celebrating The Fourth is supposed to have risks, not necessarily the actual occurrence, just the risk, of lost hearing, minor burns and, if you are really stupid, lost fingers. My fondest memories of childhood fireworks was a device called a "Smoking Capstick". If anything had possibilities of being military ordinance, this thing did. It had no fuse. It was about three inches long and had powder packed into the end like a road flare. Light the powder and it would flare then smoke for a bit. It might have smoked for up to ten seconds or so. Then it exploded with the force slightly stronger than a lady-cracker. What great fun! The game was to play catch with it. Light the thing and then play a slightly safer version of Russian Roulette.
I remember playing catch with someone in my front yard, maybe it was my brother, and a girl named Heather was walking between us. She surely saw what we were doing and that there was a smoke trail over her head. Then BOOM!! it exploded right over her head. She screamed and dove for the grass covering her head with her hands. We two mean boys just laughed. Yeah. It is still funny. No harm came to her, just a scare.
I miss the good ole days where people accepted that life, and fun, could be a bit dangerous and weren't so concerned with trying to create a "Nerfworld"
So here it is, the celebration of American independence. Let us not forget those great heroes, alive and dead, that wear or wore a uniform and are actively working to preserve our way of life. I salute you!
Let us also not forget that the Declaration of Independence was not just a published opinion, but a declaration of war. Freedom is not free. Let us celebrate our freedoms today and remember that it requires constant vigilance.
Be safe out there.