For many years (and in many municipalities) I have insisted that the best way to celebrate our Founding Fathers' decision to defy the Britich Crown and start their own republic is to flagrantly violate local ordinance by setting off fireworks.
However, just as I am waxing eloquent about the need for a Darwin Fireworks Party, MrsDarwin sensibly points out that the Founding Fathers risked arrest, hanging, and sundry other humiliations at the hands of the Crown if they failed. And although I'm unlikely to suffer these more extreme forms of punishment, I would feel pretty foolish and unfestive if the local law enforcement showed up and wrote me a ticket for breaking city law by setting off illegal fireworks.
I'm sure that Abigail Adams didn't rain her her husband's parade this way, but then, maybe he was standing up for more important principles.
Happy 4th of July to you all. And think how glad we should be not to have stuck around long enough to be in the Commonwealth and have to acknowledge that rather embarrassing royal family across the water.