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07-11-02, 07:51 AM #1
Kind of thought this was a good read......
so I have posted it here and on Military.com.
"We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready to visit violence upon those who would do us harm" - George Orwell
I am the Flag of America
I am the flag of the United States of America. My name is Old Glory. I fly atop the world's tallest buildings. I stand watch in America's halls of justice. I fly majestically over institutions of learning. I stand guard with power in the world. Look up and see me. I stand for peace, honor, truth and justice. I stand for freedom. I am confident, perhaps even arrogant. I am proud. When I am flown with my fellow banners; My head is a little higher, My colors a little truer. I bow to no one! I am recognized throughout the world. I am saluted, I am loved, I am revered. I am respected and I am feared! I have fought in every battle of every war for more then 200 years. I was flown at Valley Forge, Gettysburg, Shiloh and Appomattox. I was there at San Juan Hill, the trenches of France, in the Argon Forest, Anzio, Rome and the beaches of Normandy. I was on Guam, Okinawa, Korea, KheSan and Saigon. More recently I was in Beirut, Iraq, Kuwait, Bosnia and Afghanistan. I went forward with my troops! I was dirty, battleworn and tired, But my soldiers cheered me and I was proud. I have been burned, torn and trampled on in the streets of countries that I have helped set free, but it does not hurt, for I am invincible. I have been soiled, burned, torn and trampled on in the streets of my own country; and when this was done by those whom I've served in battle - it hurt! But I shall overcome - for I am strong. I have slipped the bonds of Earth and stood watch over the uncharted frontiers of space from my vantage point on the moon. I have borne silent witness to all of America's finest hours, but my finest hours are yet to come. When I am torn into strips and used as bandages for my wounded comrades on the battlefield, when I am flown at half-mast to honor my soldier, or when I lie in the trembling arms of a grieving parent at the grave of their fallen son or daughter, am proud and at my finest. Please forward my message to all who still love and respect me that I may fly proudly; for another two hundred years.
Take care, stay safe, God bless and Semper Fidelis,
George F. Holy, MGySgt USMC/Ret.
07-13-02, 12:43 PM #2
Another good read.. or two
After reading the post presented by MGySgt Holy, I thought this would be a good place for these. Hope you enjoy 'em as much as I do.
"WHY I LOVE HER"
You ask me Why I Love Her?
Well, give me time and I'll explain.
Have you seen a Kansas sunset
Or an Arizona rain?
Have you drifted on a bayou
Down Louisiana way?
Have you watched a cold fog drifting
Over San Francisco Bay?
Have you heard a bobwhite calling
In the Carolina pines,
Or heard the bellow of a diesel
At the Appalachia mines?
Does the call of Niagara thrill you
When you hear her waters roar?
Do you look with awe and wonder
At her Massachusetts shore,
Where men who braved a hard new world
First stepped on Plymouth's rock?
And do you think of them when you stroll
Along a New York City dock?
Have you seen a snowflake drifting
In the Rockies, way up high?
Have you seen the sun come blazing down
From a bright Nevada sky?
Do you hail to the Columbia
As she rushes to the sea,
Or bow your head at Gettysburg
At our struggle to be free?
Have you seen the mighty Tetons?
Have you watched an eagle soar?
Have you seen the Mississippi
Roll along Missouri's shore?
Have you felt a chill at Michigan
When on a winter's day
Her waters rage along the shore
In thunderous display?
Does the word "Aloha" make you warm?
Do you stare in disbelief
When you see the surf
Come roaring in at Waimea Reef?
From Alaska's cold to the Everglades,
From the Rio Grande to Maine,
My heart cries out, my pulse runs fast
At the might of her domain.
You ask me Why I Love Her?
I've a million reasons why:
My Beautiful America,
Beneath God's wide, wide sky.
~ John Mitchum ~
Narrated by John Wayne
Commentary on the Pledge of Allegiance
by Red Skelton
As a schoolboy, one of Red Skelton's teachers explained the words and meaning of the Pledge of Allegiance to his class. Skelton later wrote down, and eventually recorded, his recollection of this lecture. It is followed by an observation of his own.
I - - Me; an individual; a committee of one.
Pledge - - Dedicate all of my worldly goods to give without self-pity.
Allegiance - - My love and my devotion.
To the Flag - - Our standard; Old Glory ; a symbol of Freedom; wherever she waves there is respect, because your loyalty has given her a dignity that shouts, Freedom is everybody's job.
United - - That means that we have all come together.
States - - Individual communities that have united into forty-eight great states. Forty-eight individual communities with pride and dignity and purpose. All divided with imaginary boundaries, yet united to a common purpose, and that is love for country.
And to the Republic - - Republic--a state in which sovereign power is invested in representatives chosen by the people to govern. And government is the people; and it's from the people to the leaders, not from the leaders to the people.
For which it stands
One Nation - - One Nation--meaning, so blessed by God.
Indivisible - - Incapable of being divided.
With Liberty - - Which is Freedom; the right of power to live one's own life, without threats, fear, or some sort of retaliation.
And Justice - - The principle, or qualities, of dealing fairly with others.
For All - - For All--which means, boys and girls, it's as much your country as it is mine.
And now, boys and girls, let me hear you recite the Pledge of Allegiance:
I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic, for which it stands; one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
Since I was a small boy, two states have been added to our country, and two words have been added to the Pledge of Allegiance: Under God. Wouldn't it be a pity if someone said that is a prayer, and that would be eliminated from schools, too?
NOTE: Two states have been added since this was created - for those of you wondering why it referred to only 48 states. I love the last paragraph!
07-13-02, 12:46 PM #3
Another one... Long but well worth it.
This one is too long to post, so it will be in two parts. I think every kid in junior high to college to have to know this.
'Winning the Cultural War'
by Charlton Heston
Speech to the Harvard Law School Forum
I remember my son when he was five, explaining to his kindergarten class what his father did for a living. "My Daddy," he said, "pretends to be people." There have been quite a few of them ... prophets from the Old and New Testaments, a couple of Christian saints, generals of various nationalities and different centuries, several kings, three American presidents, a French cardinal and two geniuses, including Michelangelo. If you want the ceiling repainted I'll do my best.
There always seem to be a lot of different fellows up here. I'm never sure which one of them gets to talk. Right now, I guess I'm the guy. As I pondered our visit tonight it struck me: If my Creator gave me the gift to connect you with the hearts and minds of those great men, then I want to use that same gift now to reconnect you with your own sense of liberty of your own freedom of thought ... your own compass for what is right.
Dedicating the memorial at Gettysburg, Abraham Lincoln said of America,
"We are now engaged in a great Civil War, testing whether this nation or any nation so dedicated can long endure." Those words are true again. I believe that we are again engaged in a great civil war, a cultural war that's about to hijack your birthright to think and say what resides in your heart. I fear you no longer trust the pulsing lifeblood of liberty inside you ... the stuff that made this country rise from wilderness into the miracle that it is.
Let me back up. About a year ago I became president of the National
Rifle Association, which protects the right to keep and bear arms. I ran for office, I was elected, and now I serve ... I serve as a moving target for the media who've called me everything from "ridiculous" and "duped" to a "brain-injured, senile, crazy old man." I know ... I'm pretty old ... but I'm sure, Lord, I ain't senile.
As I have stood in the crosshairs of those who target Second Amendment freedoms, I've realized that firearms are not the only issue. No, it's much, much bigger than that. I've come to understand that a cultural war is raging across our land, in which, with Orwellian fervor, certain acceptable thoughts and speech are mandated.
For example, I marched for civil rights with Dr. King in 1963 long before Hollywood found it fashionable. But when I told an audience last year that white pride is just as valid as black pride or red pride or anyone else's pride, they called me a racist.
I've worked with brilliantly talented homosexuals all my life. But when I told an audience that gay rights should extend no further than your rights or my rights, I was called a homophobe. I served in World War II against the Axis powers. But during a speech, when I drew an analogy between singling out innocent Jews and singling out innocent gun owners, I was called an anti-Semite. Everyone I know knows I would never raise a closed fist against my country. But when I asked an audience to oppose this cultural persecution, I was compared to Timothy McVeigh. From Time magazine to friends and colleagues, they're essentially saying, "Chuck, how dare you speak your mind. You are using language not authorized for public consumption!" But I am not afraid.
If Americans believed in political correctness, we'd still be King George's boys -- subjects bound to the British crown. In his book, "The End of Sanity," Martin Gross wrote that "blatantly irrational behavior is rapidly being established as the norm in almost every area of human endeavor." There seem to be new customs, new rules, new anti-intellectual theories regularly foisted on us from every direction. Underneath, the nation is roiling.
Americans know something without a name is undermining the nation, turning the mind mushy when it comes to separating truth from falsehood and right from wrong. And they don't like it.
Let me read a few examples. At Antioch College in Ohio, young men seeking intimacy with a coed must get verbal permission at each step of the process from kissing to petting to final copulation ... all clearly spelled out in a printed college directive.
In New Jersey, despite the death of several patients nationwide who had been infected by dentists who had concealed their AIDs, the state commissioner announced that health providers who are HIV-positive need not inform their patients that they are infected.
At William and Mary, students tried to change the name of the school team -- "The Tribe" -- because it was supposedly insulting to local Indians, only to learn that authentic Virginia chiefs truly like the name.
In San Francisco, city fathers passed an ordinance protecting the rights of transvestites to cross-dress on the job, and for transsexuals to have separate toilet facilities while undergoing sex change surgery.
In New York City, kids who don't speak a word of Spanish have been placed in bilingual classes to learn their three R's in Spanish solely because their last names sound Hispanic.
At the University of Pennsylvania, in a state where thousands died at Gettysburg opposing slavery, the president of that college officially set up segregated dormitory space for black students. Yeah, I know ... that's out of bounds now. Dr. King said "Negroes." Jimmy Baldwin and most of us on the March said "black." But it's a no-no now.
For me, hyphenated identities are awkward ... particularly "Native-American." I'm a Native-American, for God's sake. I also happen to be a blood-initiated brother of the Miniconjou Sioux. On my wife's side, my grandson is a thirteenth generation native American ... with a capital letter on "American."
Finally, just last month ... David Howard, head of a Washington D.C. Office, used the word "******dly" while talking to colleagues about budgetary matters. Of course, "******dly" means stingy or scanty. But within days Howard was forced to publicly apologize and resign. As columnist Tony Snow wrote: "David Howard got fired because some people in public employ were morons who (a) didn't know the meaning of ******dly, (b) didn't know how to use a dictionary to discover the meaning, and (c) actually demanded that he apologize for their ignorance."
What does all this mean? It means that telling us what to think has evolved into telling us what to say, so telling us what to do can't be far behind. Before you claim to be a champion of free thought, tell me: Why did political correctness originate on America's campuses? And why do you continue to tolerate it? Why do you, who're supposed to debate ideas, surrender to their suppression?
Let's be honest. Who here thinks your professors can say what they really believe? It scares me to death, and should scare you too, that the superstition of political correctness rules the halls of reason. You are the best and the brightest. You, here in the fertile cradle of American academia, here in the castle of learning on the Charles River, are the cream.
But I submit that you and your counterparts across the land are the most socially conformed and politically silenced generation since Concord bridge. And as long as you validate that ... and abide by it ... you are by your grandfathers' standards -- cowards.
Here's another example. Right now at more than one major university, Second Amendment scholars and researchers are being told to shut up about their findings or they'll lose their jobs. Why? Because their research findings would undermine big-city mayor's pending lawsuits that seek to extort hundreds of millions of dollars from firearm manufacturers. I don't care what you think about guns. But if you are not shocked at that, I am shocked at you. Who will guard the raw material of unfettered ideas, if not you? Who will defend the core value of academia, if you supposed soldiers of free thought and statement lay down your arms and plead, "Don't shoot me."
If you talk about race, it does not make you a racist. If you see distinctions between the genders, it does not make you a sexist. If you think critically about a denomination, it does not make you anti-religion. If you accept but don't celebrate homosexuality, it does not make you a homophobe.
Don't let America's universities continue to serve as incubators for this rampant epidemic of new McCarthyism. But what can you do? How can anyone prevail against such pervasive social subjugation? The answer's been here all along. I learned it 36 years ago, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC, standing with Dr. Martin Luther King and two hundred thousand people. You simply ... disobey.
Peaceably, yes. Respectfully, of course. Nonviolently, absolutely.
But when told how to think or what to say or how to behave, we don't. We disobey social protocol that stifles and stigmatizes personal freedom. I learned the awesome power of disobedience from Dr. King ... who learned it from Gandhi, and Thoreau, and Jesus, and every other great man who led those in the right against those with the might.
07-13-02, 12:48 PM #4
2nd half of 'Cultural War'
Disobedience is in our DNA. We feel innate kinship with that disobedient spirit that tossed tea into Boston Harbor, that sent Thoreau to jail, that refused to sit in the back of the bus, and that protested a war in Viet Nam. In that same spirit, I am asking you to disavow cultural correctness with massive disobedience of rogue authority, social directives and onerous laws that weaken personal freedom. But be careful ... it hurts. Disobedience demands that you put yourself at risk. Dr. King stood on lots of balconies. You must be willing to be humiliated ... to endure the modern-day equivalent of the police dogs at Montgomery and the water cannons at Selma.
You must be willing to experience discomfort. I'm not complaining, but my own decades of social activism have taken their toll on me. Let me tell you a story. A few years back I heard about a rapper named Ice-T who was selling a CD called "Cop Killer" celebrating ambushing and murdering police officers. It was being marketed by none other than Time/Warner, the biggest entertainment conglomerate in the world. Police across the country were outraged. Rightfully so -- at least one had been murdered. But Time/Warner was stonewalling because the CD was a cash cow for them, and the media were tiptoeing around it because the rapper was black.
I heard Time/Warner had a stockholders meeting scheduled in Beverly
Hills. I owned some shares at the time, so I decided to attend. What I did there was against the advice of my family and colleagues. I asked for the floor. To a hushed room of a thousand average American stockholders, I simply read the full lyrics of "Cop Killer" -- every vicious, vulgar, instructional word. "I GOT MY 12 GAUGE SAWED OFF. I GOT MY HEADLIGHTS TURNED OFF. I'M ABOUT TO BUST SOME SHOTS OFF. I'M ABOUT TO DUST SOME COPS OFF..." It got worse, a lot worse. I won't read the rest of it to you. But trust me, the room was a sea of shocked, frozen, blanched faces. The Time/Warner executives squirmed in their chairs and stared at their shoes. They hated me for that.
Then I delivered another volley of sick lyric brimming with racist filth, where Ice-T fantasizes about sodomizing two 12-year old nieces of Al and Tipper Gore. "SHE PUSHED HER BUTT AGAINST MY ...." Well, I won't do to you there what I did to them. Let's just say I left the room in echoing silence. When I read the lyrics to the waiting press corps, one of them said, "We can't print that." "I know," I replied, "but Time/Warner's selling it." Two months later, Time/Warner terminated Ice-T's contract. I'll never be offered another film by Warner nor get a good review from Time magazine. But disobedience means you must be willing to act, not just talk.
When a mugger sues his elderly victim for defending herself ... jam the switchboard of the district attorney's office. When your university is pressured to lower standards until 80% of the students graduate with honors ... choke the halls of the Board of Regents.
When an 8-year-old boy pecks a girl's cheek on the playground and gets hauled into court for sexual harassment ... march on that school and block its doorways.
When someone you elected is seduced by political power and betrays you ... petition them, oust them, banish them.
When Time Magazine's cover portrays millennium nuts as deranged, crazy Christians holding a cross as it did last month ... boycott their magazine and the products it advertises.
So that this nation may long endure, I urge you to follow in the hallowed footsteps of the great disobedience's of history that freed exiles, founded religions, defeated tyrants, and yes, in the hands of an aroused rabble in arms and a few great men, by God's grace, built this country. If Dr. King were here, I think he would agree.
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