Paul Harrell’s Independence Day Monologue
Russ Chastain 07.10.19
In this six-minute video, Paul Harrell talks — sorry, no shooting other than when he tosses the “bird” to YouTube — about Independence Day and freedom of speech among other things.
He opens with a sentiment I’ve long held, which is that calling Independence Day by another name (“Fourth of July,” “The Fourth,” etc) is not right because it dilutes the meaning of the holiday. At least, that’s where I expected him to go with it. Instead he notes sensibly that if Independence Day were celebrated on the same day of the week each year (such as Memorial Day or Labor Day), that would make more sense.
Hard to argue with that. Nothing wrong with three-day weekends.
About halfway through, he gets into the issue of rights and freedoms; specifically, freedom of speech and YouTube’s right to punish him for his subject matter by “demonetizing” his videos so that his work will make money for YouTube but not for those who actually make the videos. It’s no mystery why he counts YouTube’s right on his middle finger.
He’s not wrong when he holds up a couple firearms, and while displaying each one he states, “This… is freedom.” He then addresses the topic of exercising one’s freedoms and rights responsibly in hopes of never using one’s rifles against one’s fellow Americans.
You only really have those freedoms and rights which you can defend… and we defend those freedoms with our voices and our votes — both of which have to be used frequently and responsibly. And I am steadfastly of the opinion that if you frequently and responsibly exercise the rights of your voice and your vote, that will preclude the need to defend your rights with your rifle.
He ends the video holding up two fingers of each hand. Pair of peace signs? V as in victory? Four fingers for July 4, 1776?
You be the judge.