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July 2nd, 2009
04:00 PM ET

In light of recession, how will this 4th of July be different?

ALT TEXT

(PHOTO CREDIT: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

As millions of Americans get ready for the July 4th holiday weekend, some more dreary news on the job front.

The government reported another 467,000 jobs were lost in June - far worse than forecast and the first time in four months that the number of jobs lost went up.

The unemployment rate - now at 9.5 percent - has gone up for nine straight months and sits at a 26-year high. One expert describes these numbers as not catastrophic... but "still pretty damn lousy."

As the recession drags on, a new Gallup poll shows 71-percent of Americans say they have cut back spending... while 88-percent say they're watching spending very closely. This is despite the fact that 78-percent of those surveyed say they have enough money to buy only what they need.

21-percent say they worried "yesterday" about spending too much.

Gallup suggests these results show Americans may have reached a "new normal" of spending less and that frugality may become a permanent part of the national fabric.

In the wake of the recession, they also looked at Americans' drinking habits, and found the percentage of adults who drink alcohol has stayed fairly steady at 64-percent. There are no major changes reported in how much drinkers drink - and their preferred drink is still beer.

It's a problem. The recession may very well give people more reasons to drink - but they have less money to do it with.

Here's my question to you: In light of the recession, how will this July Fourth celebration differ from years past?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

David from Tampa, Florida writes:
I'm 60 years old and my July 4th will be much the same as it has been for many years: I will go watch neighborhood fireworks and reflect on life, liberty and wishing I had the money to pursue some happiness. I will be grateful for those things I have – a home, a tank of gas and mostly good health. In these troubled times it is best to try to look for the good in things while being realistic about that which isn't so good.

Jim from Hoffman Estates, Illinois writes:
Jack, The Fourth of July holiday and celebration should be done away with. This is no longer a democracy and has not been one for some time. We no longer have any real representation or say in our government. Special interest groups, lobbyists and political power rule, not the people.

Affy from California writes:
I don’t think it will be that different, Jack. If there's one thing we Americans are good at, it’s wasting our money on food and entertainment. I'm expecting a line at the movies.

Larry from Chicago writes:
I spent $100 less on illegal fireworks for this 4th and will be BBQing hamburgers instead of steak. Other than that, everything will be pretty much the same. I'm one of the lucky ones who hasn't been laid off - yet.

Willow from Iowa writes:
It will be the same as always for me. I live in a very small town. We have a carnival with a petting zoo, food and soda to buy, and the fireworks start at dark.

Terri writes:
I am a registered nurse in the E.R., Jack, and I will be taking care of those who consume too much alcohol and think they can drive, bicycle, boat, walk and light BBQs. I have job security!

Perry writes:
We are going to make a piñata of a liberal (but this year we are thinking of using a newscaster), fill it with nothing and then we will beat the crap out of it.


Filed under: Recession • United States
soundoff (183 Responses)
  1. Ryan, Galesburg, IL

    It's a reminder that there is no freedom from oppression when the banks and oil speculators own the world, and we commoners get our cake in the form of municipal fireworks.

    July 2, 2009 at 12:43 pm |
  2. Bill Alford

    Arnold calls them IOUs. I call them money. Seems like a good opportunity
    for an investor to buy CA IOUs at a discount from people who need cash.
    Maybe China will start buying and it will soon own CA as well as the US.
    Arnold should just call it money and then put his picture on the front.

    Raleigh NC

    July 2, 2009 at 12:45 pm |
  3. jackie-Brea-Ca

    That hot dog with chili will taste better because I can't afford.

    But God Bless America and our Soldiers will be the theme.

    Have a great 4th Jack!

    July 2, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  4. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    Fireworks are still fairly cheap. Aside from that, hopefully people will recall that this country was founded by people who were sick and tired of the government sticking its nose in their business.

    July 2, 2009 at 12:57 pm |
  5. Bizz, Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    You probably will still be able to make a reservation that normally would have had to be made a year ago for the 4th of July. For those who still have a job they will be cooking on their grill in the back yard with family and friends. For those who lost their job there'll be no celebration.

    July 2, 2009 at 12:58 pm |
  6. Donna Colorado Springs,Co

    I think that the celebrations will stay closer to home this year and families will throw their own fireworks displays. The major fireworks show where I live was cancelled this year because they couldn't afford the expense of a big show, so individual neighborhoods will be putting on their own fireworks shows.

    July 2, 2009 at 1:01 pm |
  7. Mike, Newark, NJ

    Well its the first time we'll be getting for long range firworks from north korea.

    July 2, 2009 at 1:01 pm |
  8. David in San Diego

    It won't be very different. As usual, there will be drunken parties on beaches and at parks, obese Americans will over-eat and under-exercise, fireworks displays will make us all feel happy, and most people won't even think about what we are supposed to be celebrating. "Business" as usual.

    July 2, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  9. Conor in Chicago

    For me the 4th of July has always had very little to do with independence from Britain. If fact, I have always jokingly referred to it as "Happy American World Dominance Day". Well, take a look at the news: We're broke and essentially owned by China, we are in two wars we shouldn't be fighting, our country is as divided as most civil wars are, and our economy is falling apart.

    Yeah, happy 4th of July everybody...

    July 2, 2009 at 1:06 pm |
  10. donna Pennsburg,PA

    We'll be sitting at home treating it like any other day. We're so busy fighting for other country's freedom that we can't afford to celebrate our own. I hope big-shots in congress are having a good time. Hey Nancy-drink one for me!

    July 2, 2009 at 1:11 pm |
  11. Kelby, In Houston, Texas

    I scoff at your question, sir! This is still The United States of America, The Greatest country on Earth and on The 4th of July we will Bar-B- Que, pop fireworks and enjoy each others company. We will celebrate the birth of this great nation and the fact that we are all Americans.

    USA! USA! USA!

    July 2, 2009 at 1:14 pm |
  12. Phil P. in NJ

    Jack, i'm going to stay closer to home where i can roast some winnies and play my boom box. Hope the locals don't cancel the fireworks show due to a lack of funds in the budget.

    July 2, 2009 at 1:15 pm |
  13. Gil

    This July 4 will be different. Our budget is tighter. I am amazed at how the idiots in Congress continue to spend our money with no constraints. How about restricting their travel and pay for Jul 4 holidays?

    Harlingen TX

    July 2, 2009 at 1:18 pm |
  14. Randy from Salt Lake City

    This year, instead of having a BBQ with friends and family and lighting fireworks in the evening, we're going to conduct a funeral. A funeral for a once great nation. A nation that used to abide by the rule of law and international laws. A nation that didn't invade other nations to secure wealth for international corporations. A nation that once upheld the Bill of Rights. A nation that didn't imprison, torture and kill innocent people. That nation is gone. It's been replace by a fascist regime -where corporations and government have become one.

    July 2, 2009 at 1:18 pm |
  15. John Webster, Aldergrove BC Canada

    The fireworks will be downsized to one cake sparkler, the parade will be the line-up at the social security office and the midway rides will be cancelled because everyone is already on a downhill one. But on the 5th, the sun will still rise, dogs and kids will be out playing and there will be far fewer hangovers. Happy 4th of July from your trusty and faithful neighbour, Canada, eh!

    July 2, 2009 at 1:23 pm |
  16. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    To me it will mean that we have taken several steps away from what our Founding Fathers had envisioned and what our bravest men and women have given their lives over the last few centuries to advance. And whether through stupidity or malice, the blame lies at the feet of those in government who used their offices to their own personal benefit and/or ideals and for the gain of their friends. It also lies at the feet of all those who allowed it to happen – that means us.

    July 2, 2009 at 1:24 pm |
  17. VIRGINIA

    Will like my Co-Worker I am going to friends house so I can save and I will not buy NO FIRE WORKS....ha ha ha

    July 2, 2009 at 1:30 pm |
  18. Donna Wisconsin

    Nothing different for us as we just want to relax. But sure hope our neighbors buy LESS fireworks!

    July 2, 2009 at 1:36 pm |
  19. Jason, Koloa, HI

    This year it will cheaper to use your stocks to light the fire works instead of buying long matches.

    July 2, 2009 at 1:48 pm |
  20. Diane/Allentown, PA

    We'll be lighting matches after dark............

    July 2, 2009 at 1:50 pm |
  21. steve in York

    My 4th won't be different at all, I'm going to enjoy it and try to remember how great a country it really is despite all the economic troubles we face.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:01 pm |
  22. Denny from Tacoma, WA

    I seriously doubt there will be enough discretionary dollars to purchase fireworks or have the same long large city or community firework displays of the past. Usually by now we hear popping of fireworks in our neighborhood, but not so far this year.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:02 pm |
  23. Ruby Coria LA., CA.

    Jack, first off the Gov. Mark S. of S.C has to get in the unemployment line! Why is he still on the job? Who missed the memo, if you're a NO Show, NO Call, you get FIRE!
    This 4th No, hamburgers, just hot dogs, it's cheaper.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:03 pm |
  24. Meg from Troy, Ohio

    Jack–
    We're having a quiet family get-together at home with burgers as the main course. I don't plan to buy any fireworks, as I have in the past. I don't plan to drive anywhere–gas is getting too expensive. In short, my family will enjoy the pleasures of home at home. It will be a frugal fourth.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:04 pm |
  25. OBDAG in Appleton, WI

    I expect this 4th of July to be a little more somber in some ways, but many people will also be very happy in that they still do have a job, have not been foeclosed on, etc. Each of us will probably need to take a few quiet moments and reflect what the 4th means to us and why we celebrate that day as a holiday. Personally I plan on doing several jobs around the cottage, cook out and then wait for the fireworks to go off on the far side of the harbor. Unfortunately this weekend will pass by to quickly and then its back to the normal everyday routine. I just hope most of us spend $5 bucks to help stimulate the local economy. Most important on this weekend is to be safe and not get yourself injured and enjoy friends, and family.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:06 pm |
  26. Ken Johns Creek, GA

    Nothing will change for my family regarding the Fourth of July. We are proud Americans, descendants of a Revolutionary war hero. We will celebrate America and all of its greatness. When it comes to celebrating our national history the theme is still , "Don't Tread on Me."

    July 2, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  27. KEN in Pinon Hills, California

    Jack,
    To begin, let us call the holiday Independence Day. It is the only day we refer to as a calendar day. We don’t say merry 25th, or any other observance by the date. Without Independence day all the other celebrated days with names would not be necessary. How many of us know what we are celebrating on the 4th of July?
    Celebrate it with respect,now go eat your ribs.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  28. Don

    Not been traveling, have been limiting spending due to lack of disposable income, Spending more time close to home, Energy costs making EVERYTHING more expensive has been the biggest reason for the economy being in the condition it is today, even though gas has gone down, Most everything else has not, Energy costs have even sucked Mortgage payment money out of peoples pockets leaving a Mortgage crisis and the snowball continues to roll down the hill.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  29. J. Seamus Boylson

    The working class will be too busy pondering their futures, to be able to fully enjoy it; the SUV-PickUp Truck & Hummer class will be, as ever, obnoxiously dominating our roads; and Republicans – our latter day "Neo-Know Nothing" party – will be preoccupied with finding new ways to oppose ANYTHING that upsets their cozy relations with deep pockets interests that funds them.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:11 pm |
  30. Jim

    Jack,

    The celebrations may be a bit less extravagant in some areas due to the economic issues and the resulting lesser amounts of money to spend on fireworks displays. But there is no reason for our enthusiasm to be dampened. We're not celebrating the economy on the 4th, we're celebrating America. We're celebrating our continued freedom and the hope of freedom, justice, and prosperity that we continue to bring to the rest of the world. We're not perfect and, right now, our economy is a basket case. But we're still America and that's something to celebrate.

    Jim
    Reno, Nevada

    July 2, 2009 at 2:13 pm |
  31. John from Alabama

    Jack: No local fireworks display because the city and county governments would rather do without it than layoff workers. I agree with them, and I am sure Boston and Boston Pops will have a fireworks display on TV. We will not travel for any events, and we will cookout at home with just the family. But as always the flag will be flying in front our home as it has since 9/11. Jack, I hope you have a big bang day on the 4th.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:15 pm |
  32. Chuck in warren, Ohio

    Jack: A small cookout in the back yard with a few friends. The days of big spending is over at my house. No extra spending here.
    The economy will have to get along without my money. I'm done spending to support Wall Street!

    July 2, 2009 at 2:16 pm |
  33. Willow, Iowa

    It will be the same as always for me. I live in a very small town. We have a carnival with a petting zoo, food and soda to buy, and the fireworks start at dark.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:20 pm |
  34. Ray in Nashville

    It will be the same as past 4th of July celebrations: those with money will still travel and celebrate as they wish, those without money will do the best they can to make the most of the holiday.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:24 pm |
  35. Michael Odegard (Portland, OR)

    Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington used to have the largest fireworks display west of the Mississippi river. There will be no city sponsored fireworks show this year.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:24 pm |
  36. Rick Medina,OH

    Jack,

    My wife and I spent about $20 to prepare a gourmet meal this Saturday we couldn't buy for 5 times that. And, we'll probably have more fun.

    Rick, Medina, OH

    July 2, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  37. Tina Tx

    We will be grateful for our good health and for what we have and that we live in a great nation if we can just get the train back on track.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  38. Terry from North Carolina

    Jack
    Trip to the shore cancelled, gas to expensive, no fireworks cant afford them, no beer price has gone up too much. I guess I will stay home and watch CNN.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:34 pm |
  39. Martin in Shoreline, WA

    I suspect local fireworks displays will see an increase in attendance. But do not expect all of those tourists we all detest. People are looking for things to do close to home, and free isn't a bad option.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:34 pm |
  40. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    It will be hot dogs on the grill instead of steaks this year, and whatever beer is on sale instead of my favorite. But celebrate we will. Happy Birthday America!

    July 2, 2009 at 2:35 pm |
  41. Ann from Hampton, New Jersey

    Thankfully I still have a job and will be working that day. However, a lot of surrounding towns have eliminated fire works due to the recession. Gas prices have gone up and people will probably be staying in their own back yard celebrating, if they have anything to celebrate.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:36 pm |
  42. Melissa

    Some cities will probably cancel fireworks, but other than that, not much. My husband will be working all weekend and maybe I'll go watch the fireworks with family. No different from any other year.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  43. David-WIlmington NC

    Jack,

    July 4 is my birthday and I can't even afford to buy myself a beer. Not to mention some hot dogs and burgers to throw on the grill that I cant afford to buy charcoal for.

    Luckily I'm hanging out with a good friend of mine this weekend. He just got laid off and his last day of work is today. RIght now, I am sitting in his home drinking one of his beers. Well, I have to go, he gets off in 10min and I don't want to get caught. lol

    July 2, 2009 at 2:39 pm |
  44. Steve in Milfod,MA

    I'm buying cheaper beer. Other than that, not much different from other years. I'll still look for a quiet spot away from the rest of the world to grab some R&R so I can go back to work at the job that I thank God for everyday!

    July 2, 2009 at 2:45 pm |
  45. Andy in Vancouver, BC

    Probably not much in the celebration of the event. Lets face it, beer, hotdogs and fireworks are already inexpensive, so I don't see cookouts changing much. on top of that, hanging out with friends and enjoying some time outside while catching a parade doesn't cost anything. If anything, the 4th will symbolize all of our necessary frugality while showing that you don't need to spend like a hedge-fund manager to have a good time.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:46 pm |
  46. Hubert Bertrand Oberlin La.

    This year AGAIN I will not go out of state to see my kids and grandkids. I will stay home and call them. and then again I will cry. But how cares. as long as politicians can lie and CEO's are happy. They can do whatever they want. The hell with the old folks.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  47. Rob

    I believe people will spend less on extras – like fireworks and such – but it is a time to celebrate our freedom. Most people can make it to their city's fireworks displays and hot dogs are still cheap so the holiday itself should be a good one. Rob in NC

    July 2, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  48. john ....... marlton, nj

    For those of us that understand the true meaning of July 4th, it will reinforce our passion to save our country and replace the radical socialist running it and his quorum of flaming liberals.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:48 pm |
  49. william fitzwater

    For me the ability to go out and preach about heath care reform where I would have been at a BBQ but the way things are going it won't be steak it will be hamburgers.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  50. Darren

    No more fireworks "Made in China," am going with something a little closer to celebrate our Anerican holiday, "Made in Mexico."

    July 2, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  51. David Hopkins

    Sadly we will question just how much those firework shows cost.
    David
    Manhattan NY

    July 2, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  52. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    Hopefully fewer people will die on the roads or from fireworks but in all reality the American way is to celebrate with gusto and most still will find a way.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  53. JW in Atlanta

    If I started a business, various government entities would take half my profits, if profits were possible. If I wanted a job, the competition for even a poor paying one is discouraging. If I wanted to buy a house, getting a loan is a problem, and the house I might buy currently loses value even though inflation is very much coming reality. If I wanted a car, there's fewer to choose from and almost no choice for an electric drive train. So my plan this year is to stay in, shut the doors and windows, turn out the lights, and hope the cable stays on long enough for the newscasters to tell me how bad things are going to be. Thus my fourth is no different than last year.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  54. John Brodey

    Fewer steaks, more hot dogs. No fireworks.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  55. Arlene-- , Illinois

    As a senior on Social Security it seems like there will be less Bang for the Buck this 4th of July.
    P. S. God bless our troops.

    July 2, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  56. george charles paree

    I am not the normal guy I retired eight years ago.At first we were able to save $500 a month .This year we are broke every end of the month .My electric and heating bills are up %30 with cap and trade tax increase I cant it getting any better My grand chyldren will be at our home 4th of july we bought bolle rockets and sparkers for them and desided to take them to imax sunday and out for driner but this has to be planned for us to do it.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  57. Remo .............. Beautiful downtown Austin, Texas

    Jack,
    The only way I can celebrate the 4th is if I have any funds left. Yahoo!
    I can buy a sparkler, at 29% interest, on a 60 day loan pay-out.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  58. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: For me, it will remain the same-–it will come--and wii go-–and "reality Monday" will once again appear.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  59. Karen - TN

    Nothing will change, Jack. Hotdogs are still cheap.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  60. CJ in Atlanta

    This Independence Day I feel even more grateful for the people I know and the things I have. There are a lot of people worse off this Independence Day than a year prior and collectively we all look forward to better times in the weeks and months to come.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  61. Jim

    Jack: The Fourth of July holiday and celebration should be done away with. This is no longer a democracy and has not been one for sometime. We no longer have any real representation or say in our government. Special interest groups, lobbyists and political power rule, not the people.

    Jim
    Hoffman Estates, IL

    July 2, 2009 at 3:21 pm |
  62. Richard, Syracuse, NY

    This 4th is even MORE important. People need to be allowed to live and enjoy life. The very idea of celebrating the 4th could allow many people to forget, for a short time, what is happening in the US and look forward to the times when things will get better. When we remember where we came from and where we are now, it is easier to see how we can get beyond our present problems and look into the future.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:23 pm |
  63. FRED HUGHES

    Gas prices and this recession will help keep families and friends in different states from sharing their summer visits. This is an important time for older relatives to become and to stay in touch with the younger generations. It will be sad for many people in this country.---fred–Livingston, Al.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:24 pm |
  64. C.K.

    I think "family" b-b-q's will have a whole new meaning.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:24 pm |
  65. Affy California

    i dont think it will be that different jack, if its one thing us americans are good at its wasting our money towards food and entertainment, im expecting a line at the movies.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  66. Paul S. Columbia, SC

    Americans will be going to Tea Parties to take back our independence, our liberty, and our country. It's 300 million against 536, Jack. Whose side do you want to be on?

    July 2, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  67. Jim from Chicago

    I'll be celebrating here at home by reading all kinds of fascinating help wanted ads and sending warm please-give-me-a-job holiday greetings.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:30 pm |
  68. Anne -- Sulphur, LA

    Considering that the Fourth of July is less of a travel holiday than others, there will be less of an impact than with Memorial Day. I think that fewer people will be buying firecrackers instead of attending civic displays.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  69. Ralph Nelson

    There is going to be fewer unlimited hydroplanes on the circuit this year beginning with the 4th of July race in Madison, Indiana and no fall race in San Diego because of a lack of sponsors. And the Indy cars aren't on TV anymore in my area. So, pretty miserable year for me. Ralph, Yakima, Wa.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  70. Ed BassettSr

    This year it falls on a Saturday doing us out of the "extra" ay off!! That is about all Jack!

    Ed Watertown, CT

    July 2, 2009 at 3:34 pm |
  71. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    I don't think it will be more subdued. People are idiots when it's a good excuse for a party and fireworks.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:43 pm |
  72. Wensy G New York

    This recession has caused many people to budget themselves and become more frugal. Though I've realized for others, life in this recession has not had an effect on them. Many people still go out to eat, to bars, to amusement parks, etc. I think this 4th of July will find itself with many people indulging in expensive travel and activities. Smarter, or less fortunate individuals will stay home or involve themselves in less expensive activities, like a BBQ.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:46 pm |
  73. Colleen Brooks, Charlotte, NC

    Jack, I just saw the job I lost in October posted on the internet for more than a 50% pay cut. No, there will be no fireworks this forth of July. Though I am proud to be an American, I'm just a poorer American. I have to give up the frills and keep the focus, like getting my two boys through their last three years of college.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  74. Liz in CA

    Due to city financial concerns/budget cuts, the annual and magnificent public fireworks display has been cancelled. The also loses the city a lot of tourist dollars. Sad, and it will be sorely missed.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  75. David, Tampa, Fl

    At 60 years old my july 4th will be much the same as it has been for many years. I will go watch neighborhood fireworks and reflect on life, liberty and wishing I had the money to pursue some happiness. I will be grateful for those things I have, a home, a tank of gas and mostly good health. In these troubled times it is best to try to look for the good in things while being realistic about that which isn't so good in our nation and the world. Will be drinking water this year. And Jack, may your forth be a true quart and not just a fifth.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  76. Linda in Bisbee, AZ

    Don't know, don't care. I hate the 4th of July. It's the dumbest holiday we have.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:51 pm |
  77. Aaron Ky

    It will be used by some to incite nationalist fervor and exploit the economic problems we're having to their own political benefit. Others will see it as they always do, in times of struggle and strife, we remember those that sufferred more and overcame so that we could be here to celebrate.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  78. Gail, Plano,Texas

    No different than any other year for me Jack. I hate the 4th of July where people act like idiots all in the name of patriotism. The use of illegal ,harmful fireworks prevails. So I look forward to Monday. And Jack, we just purchased a new chevy cobalt sedan. We paid cash so as to stimulate the economy. In this great state of TX, our governor sees fit to use the stimulus federal money to repair his burned mansion. Now how is that creating jobs? Hard to have any spirit on the 4th when our officials in Washington and elsewhere are corrupt!!

    July 2, 2009 at 3:54 pm |
  79. Wensy G - New York City

    This recession has caused many people to budget themselves and become more aware of their expenses, therefore becoming more frugal. Though I've realized for many others, life in this recession has not had a big effect on them. Many people still go out to eat, to bars, to amusement parks, etc. I think this 4th of July will find itself with many people indulging in travel and activities as with years past. Smarter or less fortunate individuals will stay home or involve themselves in less expensive activities, like a BBQ.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  80. Jenny from Nanuet, New York

    People will get more drunk than usual at their barbeques to forget their troubles.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  81. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Won't be any different, I'll still have my watermelon, hamburgers, beer and all the usual things that go with the 4th, will go down to the river that night and watch fireworks just like the past twenty five years hat I've lived in Jacksonville

    July 2, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  82. DON IN WESTPORT, MASS.

    As long as I still have my home, grill,burgers, beer and my freedom, what else could I ask for. So far, I've been lucky.
    It's Independence Day. The corrupt financial institutions can't forclose on that.

    July 2, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  83. Liz in Los Angeles, CA

    It won't be substantially different this year, primarily because we're already pretty frugal. What will distinguish this weekend, however, is that I'll be launching a new business next week which is pretty doggone exciting. If CNN wants to interview me, I'll make myself available!!!

    July 2, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  84. Ken in NC

    Instead celebrating with my usual Scotch on the Rocks, I will only be drinking "The Rocks". I'm told there advantages to that too.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:05 pm |
  85. John, Fort Collins, CO

    The recession will virtually zero impact for the 4th celebration here in Fort Collins. There will still be two locations in town with free live music and fireworks over the lake in City Park at dusk. Since getting smashed is not part of my holiday ritual, I have nothing to cut back on.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:07 pm |
  86. dave walker,n. dartmouth,ma.

    There ain't much to celebrate this year Jack. The only things I will "celebrate" are the fact I'm still working,and,that Bush and Cheney are finally done ruining this country.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  87. Nancy, Tennessee

    The recession needs a holiday too. So most American will not change their traditional way of celebrating the 4th. It's a time of fellowship, good times, and a tub full of iced down beer and colas. When's the last time you saw a galvanized tub, full of ice, beer, and colas go to waste over a little worry about the economy?

    July 2, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  88. William Courtland

    Well compared to the first one: a celibration which most of those in the nation knew nothing of...

    In comparison with 1996 when the movie about an alien invasion came out: well a fun cinematic experience as you sat in the threater...

    I can see more people staying home, those that do get drunk might find a bit more reason for aggressive behaviors, and the neighborhood and municipally sponsored fireworks will likely be a bit shorter or less spectacular...

    Otherwise... unless you are planning something big? Not to promote the fear of the usual suspect for terrorism... but in reference to a larger party... Maybe Elvis will make a come-back or something...

    July 2, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  89. Darick Baltimore

    i hear all this recession stuff and i still have to say our new president is doing what he can to fix the flaws from the last, this is a time for family to come together. complaining about it isnt going to fix it

    July 2, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  90. Matt

    Last year my buddies and I spent $1000 on fireworks (went from NY to NH, where they're legal, and brought them home). This year we're only spending $500. :-(

    July 2, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  91. Jake, Milpitas, CA

    It will be like just another weekends for me :(

    July 2, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  92. Robert V

    I'll drink to that!! Cheers and Happy 4th everyone.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  93. Jesse J Vancouver BC Canada

    Hi Jack,

    I won't be spending any where near what I spent in the past. I will have a quiet time with my family and have a regular dinner and maybe let the kids stay up late.

    Jack everyday I hear about another person losing their job and yet the news keeps telling me that we have hit bottom or that things are looking positive?

    From where I'm sitting things are not positive... they are getting worse and I won't be spending any money that I don't need to.

    Jesse
    Vancouver Canada

    July 2, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  94. Bill Hansel

    July Fourth brings Carnival to St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The effect of the economy? It'll be Coors rather than Heineken...

    July 2, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  95. Ashley

    Well,not going to be able to afford to buy fireworks like past years,and no big cook out like the past years,all in all its not going to be the same..

    July 2, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  96. Terri

    I am a Registered Nurse in the ER Jack and I will be taking care of those who consume too much alcohol and think they can drive, bicycle, boat, walk and light Bar-B-Que's.....I have job security!!!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  97. Larry J, Chicago, IL

    I spent $100 less on illegal fireworks for this 4th and will be BBQing hamburgers instead of steak. Other than that everything will be pretty much the same. I'm one of the lucky ones who haven't been layed off – yet.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  98. Nick

    For us Cajuns, nothing will change. Have a safe holiday to all.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  99. Veda

    In light of the recession my 4th of July will be no different than years past. As an American I will celebrate the birth of our country patriotically. Patriotism has no monetary price unless, of course you include those who would want to raise our taxes... Parades, cookouts, family/friends, and fireworks as I have celebrated it and will continue to celebrate.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  100. Glenn in Seattle

    Jack –

    Sure, the economy is trash, we don't have any real health care reform, North Korea is run by a madman, and our troops are still dying in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    But gee, haven't you heard? Michael Jackson is dead! How can we possibly celebrate the 4th of July with this tragedy that has befallen us?

    July 2, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  101. joseph

    Will this 4th of July be any different for me? No. Ill do what I do everyday and every holiday in which my employer is open....I'll go to work and earn a paycheck. All the while being more concerned about what new government policies will be used to remove more money from my wages, hopefully this new government appoint healthcare ideal will not destroy the gold plated healthcare I have.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  102. Jeffery, Toledo, Ohio

    Even though I work for a hotel (i.e., a place that never closes), I usually take the holiday off–let some part-timer make the money. But not this year–I'm working the 4th–I can't afford not to.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  103. Steven

    Instead of spending Independence Day with family, friends and loved ones, I've decided to cover a couple of extra shifts at the job. I'm a college student home for summer break, but for now it looks like I'll be putting family, friends and patriatism on the back burner.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  104. Jeff in E. Lyme, CT

    As much as our Founding Fathers tried to lay out with absolutely no ambiguity in our Constitution and Bill of Rights what a constitutes a "Free" society, we must all remember there will forever be corrupt individuals willing to bring about & profit from other's misfortune. These evil people will profess their patriotism & wrap themselves in the flag while picking your pocket. The sad part is that many of them seek & obtain public office or other high positions in industry or finance where they can make the largest profits, regardless of who gets hurt, even their own Nation or it's soldiers. I would like all Americans to vow to get & stay involved and make "Never Again" their motto every year.

    God Bless America

    July 2, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  105. Gerri in Philadelphia

    This holiday we'll be staying close to home and barbequeing. The neighborhood fireworks were called off because of lack of funds. If we want to see fireworks, there's always some fool in the neighborhood setting them off. And I won't be drinking – I'm sober for 7 months now!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  106. Chris

    With the numbers at the tax tea party this year, me and other comrades and Americans will voice our disent and that we want our government back.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  107. kevin

    No job right now for me. That means no fireworks and no traveling. I will be with the family, and that is what is important. RIP MJ.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  108. Hugh ~ California

    Most Americans will stay close to home and skip buying lots of pricey fireworks; instead, they'll watch the hometown fireworks celebration–if there is one, and grill hot dogs, steaks and burgers in the backyard. That seems like a lot of family fun, without spending a lot of cash. You shouldn't have to squander your money to prove you're patriotic.

    Tracy, California

    July 2, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  109. Chaz Robinson

    Celebrating our "independence" is outdated. We are more dependent and beholding upon other countries than ever before.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  110. BJ

    No change, I am always frugal.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  111. Joan Gilbert-Croteau

    Jack,

    The people I know are going to play it safe. Have their backyard barbarcues and drink their beer at home to celebrate the 4th.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  112. Marie Cavins

    My 4th of July will be the same as always, getting together with family, and remembering why we celebrate the day! I've always been low key but proud of my Country. Besides, I can't affiord much more!! God Bless America!!!!!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  113. Curt Smith

    This Fourth of July will have to be the best I have ever had because with the Democrats running things in washington it could be the last time I can afford to enjoy and celibrate the Fourth of July.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  114. Karen S.

    We have cut back. My husband and I are still lucky to have jobs, but with all the new taxes and spending this administration is doing, we are not spending as much, going out, etc. and watch as our government does everything it can to ruin the working middle class.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  115. Keith

    Not much. My wife and I will climb on the roof, make flaming whopee, and watch the fireworks from the nearby fairgrounds.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  116. Craig D., Atlanta

    That's easy Jack. My wife and kids will go out of town to celebrate with family and friends and I remain at home, pulling double shifts to keep the $ coming in.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  117. Scott in California

    Not much different save for one exception. As usual, no fireworks – too dangerous. As usual, no beer – never needed it. The exception, too much Michael Jackson on CNN – never wanted it.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  118. robert george, greenville, sc

    this 4th will reminded, as always, of those that gave their lives in defense of our country and freedoms. but this one will be a sorrowful regret reminding me how this govt. has taken away those treasured rights. "those willing to give up their liberties for security deserve neither" ben franklin

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  119. Ralph Pineda

    I am currently drinking a beer and I am eating 2 tacos that I bought at a fasy food place for 99 cents. I guess I fit right into your commentary. This July the 4th I am going to have my family climb a tree and view a "free" fireworks show. Happy 4th of July!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  120. Pat Manders

    No change.
    My neanderthal brother-in-law and nephew will shoot off a butt-load of fireworks.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  121. Shawn

    I hope that everyone can see through these rough times and celebrate the Independence of this great nation. By the way, what happened to the concept of "Ask not what your country can do for you..."?
    God bless America.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  122. Jen, Fayetteville, AR

    This July 4th will be very out of the norm. I'm unable to take off work from either of my two jobs to spend the weekend with family. Not only can I not afford the gas or trip expenses for a trip 5 hours away, but I can't even afford just not working.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  123. Jonathan, New York

    Hey Mike, I will be working on July 4th because it is time and a half and I need all the money I can possibly get my hands on.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  124. Sgt Jon Alvarez

    Hi Jack

    Catch you on AFN over here. As my tour in Baghdad winds down, and as I've watched my country sink into depression while two of my presidents gave billions of taxpayer dollars to corporations and stimulus plans, I think I'll simply pray for the future of our once-great country on this 4th of July. The irony of the fact that we will be celebrating a day originating from open rebellion from an overbearing government and issues with taxation will not be lost on this patriot.

    Besides, being stuck in Iraq doesn't leave me much choice for anything else.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  125. Sam Pendergrass/Scappoose Oregon

    Jack here in Oregon and Washington we will not be having our 4th of July fireworks display for the first time in 35 years as the economy between our two states is dismal to say the least. With over 12% and 13% unemployment it is no wonder we do not hae enbough funds nor enough donated funds to put on the show. WE do not blame Obama or his administration as our troubles started years ago under another known business destroying president. WE shall use no names. Hopefully with the chance of green industry beginning here we will snap out and begin again. Being the Beaver state means we are tenuous to say the least.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  126. Dana

    My husband and I are immigrants, and our son was born a US citizen this year. So we will be celebrating this 4th of July with a bang, beer, hotdogs, hamburgers, and the works. Viva USA !!!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  127. Cookie Olson

    Dear Jack, the recession will not affect me at all I intend to do what I do every year if the 4th falls during the Tour de France watch the bike race on the television. Free (except for the cable fee) cool in the air conditioning and I can watch Lance ride one last time. Happy 4th Cookie

    July 2, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  128. Eric Bates

    Jack,

    We as Americans are indeed poorer, I personally lost my job last December, but we are free which is more than we say for many other people in this world. So this July 4th I am going to celebrate that freedom.

    Eric

    July 2, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  129. James in Hawaii

    None at all. Life here in Hawaii is very expensive but, regardless of economic times, locals spend hundreds of dollars on fireworks every year to blow up their piece of the island. There's a light show everywhere you look and they're all free. My 4th consists of a backyard barbecue followed with a trip to the beach to see the big shows in Waikiki. Ribs and charcoal – $15. Lightshows – free. Life in Hawaii – priceless.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  130. Christine in Toronto, Canada

    Happy Fouth of July to all Americans!

    That is one less worry that we had here in Canada, as Canada Day was on a Wednesday this year...there was no over doing it on the beer here this year as we had to get up and go to work today!
    The calendar solved the 'problem' for us.

    I hope that you all have a Happy Fourth!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  131. Ed, Cali-fornia

    This 4Th will be no different than before, shooting off illegal Chinese fireworks that used to be made here. And drinking imported beer with my amigo's who are doing my job that I used to have for half the money.

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY, AMERICA. Ain't it Great!!!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  132. seeksense

    Recession won't change the fact that Americans love to drink, make noise and blow things up.
    People don't let lack of funds keep them from partying.
    Seeksense
    Palm Bay, FL

    July 2, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  133. LUCI - ILLINOIS

    We will have 30 people in for a fishfry with lots of yummy food and no liquor. It will be a lot of visiting and laughs. Fun!!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  134. Jonathan, New York

    Hey Jack, I will be working on July 4th because it is time and a half and I need all the money I can possibly get my hands on.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  135. Gigi

    Maybe we should sit around and realize how in debt we are and how much goes to taxes and fees that are imposed upon us and don't forget enforced insurances to protect us I doubt we have very little left. Then we can decide how free we are. I'm afraid the government has us right were they want us. In their pocket.

    Oregon

    July 2, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  136. Jamie Hood

    Jack, this year, instead of sipping expensive liquors while camping on an exotic beach, or at a secluded mountain hideaway, as in years gone by, this year I will sit on my broken lawn chair, that I can’t afford to fix, knee deep in weeds that I can’t afford to mow, next to my pool that I can’t afford to run, anticipating my impending foreclosure this Tuesday. And I will be wondering… “I wonder what the less fortunate folks are doing this weekend”

    July 2, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  137. Ed, Kanawha, Iowa

    Hey Jack,

    Here in Iowa some small towns don't have fireworks at all, including our town. So as usual we'll head over to the next town to see theirs. But unfortunately we won't be able to patronize all the fundraising booths for local churches, schools, boy & girl scout troops, etc. as we usually do. I think they'll take in less than normal. We're just taking some bags of microwave popcorn, and a 12 pack of pop, and calling it a night.

    -Ed in Iowa

    July 2, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  138. Parker in Covington Kentucky

    Gee, with 91% of Americans fully employed, and all of the stores that I depend on open and fully operating, I don't suppose that my July 4th will be any different than it has been for years. C'mon Jack, it's obvious that this "recession" was created by the Bush administration to slow down the Democrats and wouldn't even exist if they hadn't scared everyone into spending less ad less of their money. So I say, relax and enjoy the holiday, and don't forget that my birthday is only a week away. So spend freely, my fellow Americans! It's the patriotic thing to do.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  139. Russ Stigler

    I think alot of people will switch from Budweiser to Keystone its cheaper you know.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  140. Tammy

    My family will be staying home and grilling hotdogs. In the past we most likely went to fireworks and grilled steaks. My family has given up alot of "things" but gained quality time.

    As far as the beer goes, DH and I used to go out about 3 times a mo. Now we might go out once a mo. We prefer to spend time on our patio in the evenings and sip a drink rather than go out on the town.

    It has become a way of life, spending less that is. Ive watched my daughters grades go up over the past yr and Im sure some of it has to do with the added time we spend together. I wonder if anyone else has had the same experiences?

    July 2, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  141. Anthony Pawlowski

    No more credit to buy fireworks.....lol

    July 2, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  142. char balch kalamazoo michigan

    We will be attending a fourth of july celebration this year as last year which is sponsored by the city and local churches which includes fire works and putting together packages for the GIs . Its close and a wonderful experience for families.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  143. Annie, Atlanta

    It won't. The celebrations in and around our town are free, including concerts and fireworks. It's just getting my husband out of the recliner and away from the tv clicker that's an issue.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  144. Steve

    Jack,
    After loosing my job last month, I am staying home, and trying to keep positive. I don't really see anything to celebrate this fourth of July. People are out of work, Washington is out of touch, and the boys, and girls on Wall street just keep behaveing like they always have. I will celebrate when real change come to America. Until then I will stay home, and grill a hot dog, or two.

    Steve
    Fort Collins, Co.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  145. Tim in FL

    Less Cash, Less Flash. Scaled back fireworks celebrations are planned reminding us to make due with less.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  146. Michael McDowell from Ft. Hood Texas

    Since the 4th represents our nations founding and what was the blueprint for a model democracy, it will be a somber day in that in almost 235 years we have allowed greed and corruption to take us down the same path as civilizations that exist in only in the pages of a history book! What a shame in our failure to learn the lessons of the past!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  147. Jay in Texas

    In the good old days, before gas prices were manipulated to today's outrageous prices, I would be vacationing by van all across the western states. These days, I stay at home and enjoy the 4th with family and friends.
    Brownwood, Texas

    July 2, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  148. Ted in Portland OR

    Jack, this is still AMERICA! The same spirit and determination that took a bunch of ragtag rebels and revolutionaries through the gates of freedom will take us through any crisis or valley we go through.
    Remember the 4th of July and it's real meaning. Also take time to remember and be thankful for all the military personnel who are still out there protecting those values.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  149. Carol Auburndale, Fl

    Maybe, just maybe, the American people will decide to become American again. Like only buying what is made in America. If we all did that it would force all these companies that have taken our jobs to other countries to bring them back home where they belong. Let's start questioning their patriotism.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  150. Benny

    Instead of Filet Mignon, we'll be eating Ground Beef this 4th of July...other than that everything else will be the same.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  151. Diane Kelsey

    On the birthday of the USA, we can reflect and be proud on ways our country has advanced since our birth. However, this July 4th birthday is a sad one for me. 2 wars–our people losing jobs and homes–unaffordable health care & many even without it. With drugs permeating our society, our fascination with celebrities, violence, and lack of concern for all living things and our planet, I have to ask, Where is the good news, and how far have we really advance?

    July 2, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  152. Jim Anderson

    I'll tell you how things will be different this year. I'll be praying that our elected officials will get to work trying to straighten out the mess we are in and that the news will cover those efforts,.NOT Michael Jackson this, Michael Jackson that, not Governor infidelity or Bush did it, or whatever distractions come up. This country needs leadership now. Just do it! LEAD or find another job. There, I said it. Yes, I feel better now. Thanks for the opportunity.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  153. Mike in Colorado

    It seems that this year North Korea wants to join in the celebration. They have already launched four missles aimed at the ocean and have hit the target all four times.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  154. linda wofford

    This 4th will be the first time I've gone to a "tea party". I think it's a pretty good way to celebrate our nation. My purpose is to remind the federal government of the 10th amendment.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  155. barb allen

    the people are losing jobs, losing their homes, losing health insurance, losing our children in a useless pre-emtive strike, but give us more about michael jackson. Is this our country's birthday celebration? Happy 4th all.
    barb

    July 2, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  156. Michael and Diane Phoenix AZ

    We don't usually go out on the 4th to begin with...too many crazies out there, but as far as we know the only city planning on having a fireworks show is Tempe. And considering it's supposed to reach about 106, where the temp has been around 99-100 degrees at 10pm, fireworks are pretty much banned anyway due to the high fire danger.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  157. Pugas-AZ

    I don't think it will differ much, maybe just in scale. I hope we all reflect on what we do have rather on what we might no longer have. I would think that we as a country would be more sober in our thoughts and remain optimistic about the future. Let's hope we will all have enough money in the future to pay our taxes.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  158. Sandy in Lenexa, Ks.

    The recession won't impact what we plan to do for the fourth - a family gathering with a cookout. However, our city, Lenexa, Ks. normally puts on a fire works display with the city next door, Shawnee, Ks. Both cities felt they needed to cancel the fireworks celebration, though Lenexa will continue with a Freedom Run and the Community Parade. We'll miss the fireworks and hope the cities can find a corporate sponser for next year's celebration.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  159. Gianni

    Hello Jack going to spend it with the family barbecuing hamburgers hot dogs and shooting fireworks and feel free to come along Jack.just let me know how many people you'll bring.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  160. Jerry, Balad, Iraq

    My celebration will be different as I will celebrate the 4th of July here in Iraq. Although we are in a recession, I actually make more money by serving in a combat zone. Combine that with the money I'm saving by not driving, buying groceries, no utilitiy costs and job security and I'm actually doing quite well. However, when I do redeploy, I will adjust my spending habits and increase my savings and investments.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  161. Beto

    Jack,
    Having grown up in a less fortunate Hispanic American Family, working to become middle-class in the 50’s and a 3rd generation American from a 2nd generation father who was in WWII, dreams were a part of my sister and my life. We both earned master degrees (first college graduates in family) and had successful careers through to Retirement. My (3) children are grown and College graduates and have earned a better “class” life. All this was done by 4 generations living “frugally” and “pragmatically.” For our family the American dream was real but a struggle. We are thankful for the opportunities. It seem that everyone else now has to take their own lives from our view point. It would be sad to see all we have worked for taken away. Our culture and family ethic has always been directed to the betterment of the family through each generation. I heard it from my Grandfather and I preach it to my Granddaughter. The cycle continues and may the circle be unbroken… We will celebrate as we always have, simple but proudly.
    God Bless America

    July 2, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  162. Patricia

    I worry sometimes, but in general, have a grateful for a great deal. My husband is visiting his family in Guatemala this week for the first time in at least 15 years, and I couldn't afford to go. My husband got his first shoes (used) when he was 19 y.o. We have a lot here even when we're suffering. I will have a low-key few days doing very little but might see "The Stoning of Soraya M," rejoice that I do not live in Iran or Afghanistan, or Honduras. There may be a lot of problems here, but we manage to get a lot things right. Our elections usually seem fairly free of fraud and corruption, we haven't had a military coup, the government hasn't cut off my internet or twitter, and Bernie Madoff is in jail where he belongs.
    We get a lot of things right, and with the ones we don't get right, we frequently attempt to work on them. I'm very grateful to live here, and no amount of money, be it less or more, can change that.
    Happy Fourth of July to you.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  163. Richard Gustafson

    Will the recession effect changes in the holiday I think not! I believe Americans love our country and enjoy a good a good celebration. Some may grill hot dogs and forgo the steaks. The king of Beers may not be from St. Louis any more, foreign countries mine our gold, we buy foreign oil and will be driving fiats, a dollar is like a quarter. Jobs are scarce. But our soldiers are strong brave and kicking ass. Freedom still rings true in AMERICA
    Rich

    July 2, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  164. nasir

    Jack althuogh americans are getting hurt economically ,the good news is ,if someone cannot afford to buy their traditional celebrations like fireworks displays and cookouts. maybe they can tune to the vice's presidents visit in iraq and watch if he may be make some funny gaffes in iraq while visiting the army in iraq

    July 2, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  165. mel

    It will be quite a bit different. Not because of the hard times, we have been through those before and have survived.
    It will be different because I am very concerned because Our country is being attacked from within by folks that want us to be a socialist
    country and only a shell we use to be for the simple reason of they want to control everthing!
    We never learn from history., do we?

    melvin
    la junta,co

    July 2, 2009 at 4:33 pm |
  166. sue

    Well we are going camping in our motorhome. But since the Bush Admin. left this country in such a mess and my husband is unemployed we can only afford to drive it 2 miles. I wonder where our Politicans are going? Maybe flying to Argentina . We wouldn't want them to have to stay home and maybe work on affordable health care for all. It's nice that they get a vacation without doing their job. Oh I forgot they get an exta bonus from the lobbyists so they don't have to worry about anything but enjoying life. I just wish just one GOP member or Some of the Democrats who don't want to help the American people come an visit us in NY for a couple of weeks I would have a few qestions for them..

    July 2, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  167. Miguel E. from San Leandro, CA

    It's going to be modest and it usually is, but perhaps a bit more melancholy.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  168. Jinny Lee

    Jack....the 4th will be not be any different than in the past......we will spend beyond our means....let the good times roll!

    Jinny Lee
    Melrose FL

    July 2, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  169. Ian Clark

    Well Jack it's just gonna be another 4th of July full of fun on Baw Beese Lake in southern Michigan , then back to the Page family barbaque for plenty food and fireworks. The recession doesn't scare me in the least bit . It's out of my control. I did my job and our leaders did not. It is there fault and there problem. I am going to be a survivor just like I always have been. "They can't break my legs". I wish everyone who reads this a safe and happy 4th.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  170. Stephanie from AZ

    The hamburgers and hotdogs will still be around but traditions are fading because of the recession. As far as fireworks, Tucson almost cut them out completely for the city...due to lack of funds but donations came in about 2 weeks ago. The show won't be as long though. For decades there has been a free concert in the park on the 4th, but not this year. This is the first year my son is old enough to be excited but he will not see Indepenance Day as mommy and daddy use to.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:36 pm |
  171. Ruth

    I am an American by choice, and every July 4 I spend a few moments just being grateful to live in a country that has given me amazing opportunities in the 45 years I've lived here. So nothing's different for me this year; I'm still grateful, and I never spend money on the holiday anyway.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:39 pm |
  172. Gigi

    Ted in Portland Or. you may be ridding high up in Portland but in the Willamette Valley there is not a family untouched without some economy woes. We have one of the highest unemployment's rates in the US.

    Oregon

    July 2, 2009 at 4:39 pm |
  173. Jerry Pirkle, Mississippi

    Jack,
    This 4’th of July will be special since it will be spent with more family members and it will be the first Independence Day since the attempted dictatorship of the last eight years.
    Hotdogs, hamburgers and beer are good anyday.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:40 pm |
  174. Carol Austin

    My husband is a broadcast sound mixer and I am a freelance writer and with the recession my husband has had to start playing acoustic music again to make money. So, he will be out playing music rather than around a campfire in our backyard. Thank goodness we have something else to rely on. So we will celebrate the 4th on the 3rd as a family. you do what you have to do . . . .

    July 2, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  175. Gary In Lexington

    Jack, In spite of our predominately useless politicians, the greed in Corporate America and Wall Street, the state of our economy, two wars, rising unemployment, healthcare costs and insurance costs, it is still the "Birthday of our Nation"! And, in spite of everything I just sited, the spirit, the will and the relentless drive of our people, will not only overcome all of these obsticles before us, but I believe we will be a stronger and more resilient Nation then ever! So, as always, I will proudly fly our Flag, drink a few cold ones and hope my neighbors do not blow anything up. God Bless America, still the best damn Nation on earth!
    Gary,
    Lexington,KY

    July 2, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  176. Radovan Panovic

    Well, I suppose I'll spend it over in Iraq. Like '03,'06 and now '09 but I hope everyone else gets to celebrate like they usually do.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  177. Miguel E. from San Leandro, CA

    It will be good to get away from work so we can focus on Michael Jackson for a change!

    July 2, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  178. Jane (Minnesota)

    I've never done anything special for the 4th of July – so the recession won't change anything for me.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:43 pm |
  179. Enrico

    1 less hotdog and not quite as festive ..layedoff 2 weeks ago from a major Aero Mfg. Company after 29 service but none the less a proud day for all Americans.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  180. david collier

    july 4th shouldnt be that different. fireworks will still go up everywhere in the united states

    July 2, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  181. SHARON: Anchorage, Alaska

    No celebration or fireworks purchased. Working on home projects through the holiday & weekend. Unemployment will hit 15-20% within coming year, for all diverse groups. Already there for African-American males. Only reason we're holding fairly steady now, is not the stimulus. It is the fact that it is summer. Wait until this fall & winter. Oh, where will we put our veterans to work when they come home? They won't have much to celebrate after giving life & service tor liberty; then come home to 15-20% unemployment. The Great Depression was 1 in 4; Spain currently 33% & France 24% jobless.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  182. tau

    Well Cafferty, I will do what I been doing over the years. Nothing. I really don't get involved in this celebration. i just relax and enjoy my family as I do everyday.
    God bless America

    July 2, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  183. Dennis north Carolina

    more people may stay home but they will have fun with out spending a bunch of money.

    July 2, 2009 at 4:58 pm |