This week, I take you for a ride with me on my Harley trike. As we approach the July 4th holiday, I also thought it was a good time to equate the freedom of the road with the freedoms we enjoy thanks to those men who declared our nation’s independence, and those who fought then as well as today to defend our rights.
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I got this in response to a blog I wrote last week:
Hi, Dr. Laura. I am my kid’s dad! I’m writing in response to your blog, “Idiots on Parade“.
As a 15 year member of the world’s greatest Air Force, and third generation protector of this great nation, I want to thank the residents of Lebanon, Missouri for the support and dedication they have displayed, as they laid one of their own “true patriots” to rest. My travels with the Air Force have allowed me to see that there are still many, many Americans who are grateful for the service that my brothers and sisters in uniform perform on a day-to-day basis.
Many of us spend an unknown amount of time putting our necks on the line so that ALL Americans – even the folks in Berkeley –can continue to enjoy the freedoms they have today. Having been stationed in California for the last three years, I have seen first-hand the many demonstrations that have taken place in protest of the war. At first, when I see these demonstrators, my blood boils because I wonder how anyone could feel this way when many young men and women sacrifice a lot on a daily basis. But once my blood pressure returns to normal, I remind myself that what they are doing is a good thing. What I mean by that is they are exercising their constitutional rights – the very same rights that we in the military are sworn to uphold and protect at all cost.
So, I want to thank the residents of Berkeley for their indirect support, I want to thank the residents of Lebanon, Missouri for their direct support, and, most of all, I want to thank all of my brothers and sisters in uniform for the outstanding Job that they are doing on a day-to-day basis. There is no doubt in my military mind that we have the best and greatest people serving in the volunteer force known as the United States military!
One Proud Air Force member and
AMERICAN Technical Sergeant,
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I watched an amazing video on YouTube of a University of Wisconsin sophomore and student senator, Roderick King, knocking over 4000 white crosses that “Pointers for Life,” a pro-life club, obtained permission to place on campus grounds. The display was meant to symbolize the 4,000 unborn babies who are aborted each and every day in the United States of America.
So far, no disciplinary action whatsoever has been taken against Mr. King, and the student government has decided to put the issue off until next semester….uh…that’s in the Fall. I guess they figure we’ll all forget about it and they don’t have to punish one of “their own.” Whom do I mean by that?
Ian Ivey, with The Leadership Institute, a conservative organization which trains and places conservative leaders into public policy positions, the media, and schools said: “It was an astonishing thing to see the video of the student senator just with clearly no respect, no regard at all to either the rights of the students who had set up that display, or the intent of the display and the real meaning of that display. This is the kind of thing that happens on college campuses on a regular basis, where conservatives face this kind of oppression…mostly from students, but especially from student government associations who are thoroughly dominated by a leftist agenda.”TrackBack URI
So, there I was, innocently watching the news on Fox News Channel, when the screen split in two, and on the left side was some guy talking about his group’s letters to all military, basically telling them to go AWOL. On the right side, was a military representative who was denying the other guy’s assertion that one out of four Marines and other military believe that 9/11 was President Bush’s doing. He extolled the virtues of a volunteer military who see the truth, because their boots are on that ground, and who have first-hand experience with the realities in the Middle East conflicts.
I then went to my computer to check my emails, and received the following:
Dear Dr. Laura:
I’m the proud 2-year resident of Lebanon, Missouri. Today, our city buried a hero, Army Specialist James Finley, who was killed in Afghanistan.
You probably recall the protests and fits that the wacked-out liberals threw in Berkeley, California when the Marines opened a recruiting station. I’d like to contrast their behavior toward the military with the behavior I saw from my fellow citizens in Lebanon today.
In Sunday’s local paper, the Mayor asked everyone to line the route the funeral procession would take to Specialist Finley’s final resting place. Local businessmen purchased flags for people to hold, and gave them away by the hundreds. Even though it was lightly raining, several THOUSAND people lined Jefferson Street to express their condolences and respect for the service of one of America’s true heroes. Hundreds of Patriot Guard riders, fire trucks from several departments and hundreds of mourners made up the several mile-long funeral procession. All business in town (including Wal-Mart) closed for an hour to allow their employees to pay their respects. Bankers in suits stood next to men in work clothes, all silently holding their hands over their hearts and displaying flags as the procession passed. I did my best to capture the procession and the number of people with my small camera, but the images don’t do the scene justice. I hope the Finley family took some small comfort from seeing thousands of their fellow citizens paying respect for their son’s sacrifice.
I’m proud and honored to be living in a community where duty, honor and patriotism still mean something. On July 4th, a 3-story tall flag is hung from the County Courthouse. On July 12, we have our annual “God and Country” fireworks celebration, and on September 11, we will have a formal ceremony with a military fly-over to recognize everyone who has given the ultimate in keeping us free from terrorism.
Those in Berkeley may feel like they are accomplishing something with their protests. Here in Lebanon, we truly know how to recognize a hero and what it truly means to be an American.
231 years ago, the Declaration of Independence was signed, but it wasn’t until seven years later, in 1783, that the war was over and the United States of America was officially free of British rule. We commemorate a lot of things on July 4th – the signing of that most important document, the birth of a new nation, and the freedom that we’ve been able to enjoy since Thomas Jefferson wrote of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” For this holiday, I’m turning my blog over to my listeners – below are excerpts from letters and emails I’ve received reminding us all about what it means to be an American, and how we should value those who defend those rights we hold so dearly. Continue reading Independence Day…TrackBack URI