Tag Archives: Bunbury

John Adams

Independence – Word of the Day

IMG_0135.jpg

Eurasian Coot, Big Swamp, Bunbury. Alone again, naturally. This one had set a course for herself, away from the others.

The stories of other nations and communities are always interesting to me, how they evolved and what are some of the key historical points that have become the DNA of the nation, and who are some the characters in nation building.

It is July 4th, the celebration for Americans of their independence from Britain. One of the things that always intrigues me, is the story within the story. Eventual political independence came as a result of independent people. One such person was John Adams (1735 – 1826).

Britannica.com describes Adams and his wife Abigail as fiercely independent. Adams was an early advocate for independence. His father had hoped he’s follow in his shoes as a church minister. Adams trained with that in view, but on graduation from Harvard spent three years teaching at a grammar school. He eventually determined to do law, and set up practice in Boston. It was while in Boston that his independence came to public prominence. Eight British soldiers had fired on a crowd in Boston – the Boston Massacre -and were on trial for murder. John Adams decided to defend them. He believed that they had the right to legal representation (and for a fee no doubt), and his view was that the soldiers had been provoked. While it was an unpopular thing to do it showed that Adams was a principled person, and it also showed that Adams was one who could think and act independently.

In 1765 Adams wrote a dissertation against the Stamp Act, He went on to oppose the Townsend Act (import duty). In 1774 he was elected to the delegation to represent Massachusetts at the First Continental Congress. In 1775 he published his “Novanglus” essays arguing that Britain had no right to legislate for the colony. He attended the Second Continental Congress in 1776, and was nicknamed “The Atlas of independence” surely an irony? He dominated debate and made crucial nominations – George Washington as comander of the Continental Army; and Thomas Jefferson to draft the Declaration of Independence. His list of achievements is long, and include a term as ambassador in both France and England, two terms as Vice President, and one term as President. While his political philosophy is much debated and some of his views unpopular, Adams has been hailed as a patriot and revolutionary who spurred a colony to nationhood.

No matter what you think of him, you can’t deny that he was indeed and independent thinker and activist who worked for the nation’s own independence. Perhaps in that light we might say that America’s independence is an outworking of the independent-mindedness of its founders, especially John Adams. I note though, that Adams was not a one-man-band, he ably delegated, deffered, and encouraged others to do their bit, not wanting to hog the limelight, but rather to share it. Independence doesn’t mean solo, or maverick, though it doesn’t exclude those labels those labels are not the principal defining behaviours, it means appropriate dependence and independence in synergy. A bit like co-dependency is not all bad, we all have a positive level of dependence and co-dependece in our lives, if we didn’t we’d have sterile relationships and bland communities and not a lot would get done. We also need a positive level of independence in our lives too, without it we are not an identity, just a name, alone. I like to think I have a bit of John Adams in me, an independent thinker and activist, but also one who can function in and for community. I hope you do to.

many fine new branches
a multitude of blossom
the trunk is solid

©Paul Cannon

Paul,

pvcann.com

30 Comments

Filed under community, Haiku, history, life, mindfulness, politics, self-development

The Stump

What would you see in a tree stump? One where the tree had fallen in a storm, one that was in a strip of wasteland, the road verge on the edge of a rest stop on a country highway? Some people see firewood, others wood chips, a garden prop perhaps, or just a nuisance. But some see potential, some see art.

IMG_0056.jpg

I took this photo last week on my fortnightly trip from Bunbury to Albany. The stump sits at the northern end of the rest stop right on the intersection of Albany Highway and Martagallup Road (the way to Frankland River). I spied it the trip before but was tied up in traffic and a yearning for home. This time I made time to stop and take the pic and to admire the work. I was blown away that someone would stop here and take the trouble to produce this carving, beautifying this very ordinary space, and bringing the creative dimension to every passerby. A gift to the community. More I say.

Paul,

pvcann.com

4 Comments

Filed under art, community, Country, life, nature

The Adventure Begins

IMG_0015.jpg

Yesterday Lyn and I drove the 172kms to Perth to pick up our hired 4×4 camper. We’ve been planing this for some time. We’re heading off with our good friends Geoff and Su out bush in Western Australia and on into the Northern Territory. Today we just shopped, stocked and packed the wagon, lots of fun trying to remember where half the camping gear was stashed since last year’s trip out bush. tomorrow we set off from our home in Bunbury for Merredin, where Geoff and Su live, a journey of 427kms and lots of favourite places for us to revisit along the way.

pvcann.com

5 Comments

Filed under Uluru 17