Not from aliens (yet), but from those pesky red-coated British. We have of course had to repel several more British invasions since 1776, and The Beatles' music catalogue is now firmly in control of the Michael Jackson estate, so I think we can now officially declare eternal victory.
Seems like it was just in time, too. If Jason Isaacs (Colonel Travington) had actually fought Mel Gibson in real life, things might not have gone so well for George Washington and the Continental Army.
Joking and British slights aside, we will miss the modern American Independence Day traditions, especially in our homeland in the Midwest. Parades, outdoor barbecues, baseball, and fireworks displays all come to mind. That and the Midwestern heat, humidity, and mosquitoes.
Here in Europe, declaring your love for your national affiliation in the face of all other nations is usually seen as impolite in mixed company. It seems to be accepted in a few circumstances, mostly at national sports games (except in mixed-country teams like the Irish Rugby Football Union with its own politically-neutral song), but people don't usually break out into national anthems at the drop of a hat.
Not so in America, where we don't have to worry about offending neighboring countries that still suffer from political tension and the uneasy, suspicious compromise of the European Union. We've long ago settled our differences with Canada and Mexico, and they usually just ignore the Americans and our annoying chants of "U-S-A! U-S-A!"
To all those back in America, enjoy your holiday. To all those irritated by our unbridled nationalism, please forgive us. We understand your frustration and we'll try to keep it down.
...And now, for the education of our European readers and to bring a smile to the faces of our
"If you don't love it, leave it! USA, number one!"
Preach on, Ricky Stanzi, preach on!