Redacted email excerpt to friends in Asia - an indication of how far we have fallen
Original post made by Outside Observer, another community, on Feb 3, 2011
Chao XXXX va XXXX,
Hope the new year gives you and your families happiness, health, good luck and wealth.
For me, I got a little good luck for myself and family today. I had lunch with my friend XXXX today. He is expanding his XXXXX business in the Philippines, and my brother in law there will get a lot of new business from him at his new facility.
XXXX lives in XXXXXXXXX. The Vietnamese community in XXXXXX is not far from his house, so I stopped by one of the Vietnamese markets after lunch, and that is where I took the attached pictures.
The pictures are of the main square of the market. All the red debris are spent firecrackers, and fireworks. All of these are illegal in California, yet the Vietnamese find a way to celebrate Tet the traditional way, even if it is illegal.
The police won't bother them. If they did, I know there would be a riot, and the police would lose.
Although it is illegal, there are also people selling firecrackers, and I XXXXXX for my 20 year old son. He has never experienced firecrackers before. The last time they were legal was when I was a young child.
In USA culture, we used to celebrate our independence day, July 4, with fireworks. I have many fond memories of shooting off firecrackers and fireworks when a child. I never injured myself with fireworks. I never knew anyone who did, although it's obvious they can be dangerous if misused. Obvious even to a child.
Slowly, over the years, the USA government has used the acts of stupid people to restrict the acts of everyone. Yes, firecrackers are dangerous, and if you hold them in your hands, you can blow your fingers off. If you are stupid enough to do that, then you get what you deserve, but it is not right to take firecrackers away from everyone because a very few stupid people injure themselves with them.
But that is what has happened in The USA.
I'm happy to see the Vietnamese rejecting this type of thinking and not letting the worst among us dictate what can and cannot be used for cultural celebrations.
Watching all the people celebrating there with fireworks reminded me of my childhood, when we too could celebrate our national holiday in the traditional way. That is something my son will never know......
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