The Heart of Patriotism Beats Loudly—Even in Deep Blue California

There's plenty of patriotism - even in California. (Credit: Bob Hoge)

Even in the People’s Republic of California, there are millions of patriotic Americans who are intent on living their lives, raising their kids, and feeling grateful that they grew up in such a great country. I was reminded of that on Independence Day when I visited the city of Monrovia to watch the July 4th festivities.

It’s an idyllic town of under 40,000, only about 20 miles from downtown LA, yet still part of the incredibly vast county of Los Angeles—the largest county by population (10 million) of any in the United States.

It was like a different world compared to the nearby City of Angels. It was quaint and welcoming—beautiful with the rolling hills in the distance—and had a small-town feel, with a lovely walkable main street dotted with outdoor cafes, a park with a huge fountain, pizza shops, and ice cream parlors. There were no vast homeless tent encampments, no strange people talking to themselves on every corner, no dilapidated RVs parked at every intersection. In short, it was paradise—the California we remember from Spielberg movies.

But it gets better. Independence Day celebrants started lining up in the local park at 6 am to save their spots for the show that was to come. And guess what? They were from every background imaginable—black, white, Asian, Hispanic, Middle Eastern, and more—and yet every person there seemed to hold one thing in common: they loved America. There was no visible hatred or division, there was no suspicion; there were only people enjoying themselves.

They wore hats and T-shirts and carried American flags, all showing their appreciation of the United States. When I went to a similar event several years ago here in the city proper, folks showed up with toy soldiers covered in blood pinned to their clothing—clearly indicating their disgust with this country. That was a far cry from the scene in Monrovia, just a quick half-hour drive away.

People often write me and say, why do you live in that hellhole? It’s because of places like this—the folks here have year-round fantastic weather, beautiful vistas, friendly neighbors, and safe streets. Yes, cities like San Francisco are a different matter, and the politics in Sacramento are bananas, but still, there aren’t that many better places in the world to live.

I and others have written extensively about the problems in California—but it’s because I care about it, not because I hate every aspect of living here. We need to save it, not give up on it. And when people say, Californians deserve it, which they opine surprisingly often, I answer: “Do you deserve Joe Biden?” Because I’m pretty sure if you’re reading RedState, you didn’t vote for him—but you’re paying the price for his extremism anyway. Wokeism, identity politics, out-of-control spending, and social engineering are not endemic only to Cali; these are countrywide problems and we all need to be fighting against them.

This Independence Day gave me hope, and it was due to a celebration of our nation right here in the Golden State.

Despite what the MSNBC crowd and the disturbingly woke Hollywood stars try to tell you, there is still an incredible amount of patriotism and love for the U.S. in this country—even here in the belly of the beast. For the many commenters who tell me I’m almost traitorous for not just jumping ship and leaving, I ask, and then what? Just give up on the vast numbers of freedom-loving people? Where else can you head to the beach whenever you feel like it, or be deep in the forest or on top of a world-class ski mountain without ever getting on a plane? Play golf in shorts in January? Have access to internationally acclaimed sports, entertainment and cultural facilities at the drop of a hat?

So yes, I will keep reporting on all the deep flaws of the Left Coast for two reasons: one) sunshine is the best disinfectant, and two) I want to warn the rest of you. If you think your state is immune, you’ve got another thing coming (see: the state of Colorado, and the city of Austin, Texas). We gave you Ronald Reagan only a generation ago, and look at us now.

Today I mark the 27th anniversary of not driving my wife away (Happy Anniversary, dear!), and during that time I’ve raised four beautiful children, five dogs (two of which are still with us), an unknown number of hamsters and tropical fish, three cats, even several birds—we have an untold number of wonderful memories here. To those who think we should let bullies like Rep. Adam Schiff and Gov. Gavin Newsom force us out—I say, to h**l with those two and their ilk. They will be remembered merely as the toxic politicians that they are, and I and others like me will continue to enjoy the hummingbirds buzzing in our yard, the amazing beauty, and the ever-present sunshine. There’s a well-known concept, “flight or flight”—well, for now at least, I choose to fight. A little town called Monrovia reminded me why.

I’m stubborn, and I’m not calling the U-Haul just yet.

SEE: Why California Matters—to YOU


July 4, 2020: LA Residents Told Authorities ‘Don’t Tread on Me,’ Lit up Sky in Spectacular Show of Defiance

State of The Republic: July 4, 2023 (A nice piece by our own Ward Clark on the pleasures of small-town living)

Debate Takeaway: CA Gov. Newsom Is a Slick Used Car Salesman, but You’ll Drive Away in a Lemon



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