Today is the Fourth of July—the day on which citizens of the United States of America celebrate our independence. So on this day, as I have done in the past, I’m going to ask a favor from all my American readers:

Don’t ‘celebrate’ the day in a drunken stupor or by engaging in other reckless activities. Celebrate it by enjoying it. Celebrate it by spending time with friends, having a cookout, maybe a beer or two (moderation, people!). And—if you’re feeling especially daring—maybe read some of our founding documents to remind yourself how lucky we are to live in a country that values justice, equality, and freedom.

Let’s also take this opportunity to put aside our overly-partisan rhetoric and celebrate that which we can all agree on: despite it’s flaws, the United States is a wonderful country, and we should all be thankful to be here. Let’s not degrade the holiday with political bitching, overindulgence in alcohol, or life-threatening explosives. Our great nation deserves much better.

God bless America, and have a great day!