Oh, and I was so proud and honored to be an American, but needless to say, many smart alecks have said to me over the years, "Oh, you're one of those "flag wavers." Yep, I suppose that's exactly right, I come from a family of flag wavers - and I'm proud of it. As a family back then, no, we didn't have a lot, but even as a little kid I knew two things for sure. We believed in God and we were free. We had that and nobody could take it away from us. I remember as parents, Hubby and I weren't quite as much fun. By then sparklers were like stupid, and nowadays, too, sparklers are nothing - kids have so much and it takes an awful lot to excite and grab their attention. But Hubby and I tried to teach our sons what July 4th stood for, why it existed. We just didn't do it on the 4th of July either. Learning and appreciating freedom is something that should be taught every day, because every day is a day we should thank God for the blessing of being born and living in a nation protected by his mighty hand. I don't know if we can take credit for succeeding as flag-waving parents or not, but somehow our sons have both become great men who now teach others nearly daily about freedom in one form or another. Both understand explicitly what the cost of freedom is and could be. Yes, there it is - the big "C" word. The cost of freedom.
I'm older now and I realize that there are some of us who have never had to bear the cost of freedom. We've just enjoyed it. But our freedom has come at an immense cost. Patriots of all stature have stood their ground and fought large and small battles, won and lost many skirmishes. It wasn't all big booming sounds, bright lights and rockets bursting in the air. It was the anguish of being mocked by your family and the great pain of enduring wounds that would never heal. It was being treated like a caged animal, the loss of hard-earned personal possessions and it was the loss of many, many lives, both young and old . . . . and all for what? FREEDOM!!
My friends here we are on the precipice of time where many of those hard fought-for freedoms are slipping away faster and faster and we stand by, doing absolutely nothing, and silently wonder why no one really comprehends anymore how very blessed we have been all these years. No one gets it. No one knows, or in many cases even care, what it took to get this very point in time. Still . . . . . . . . . . . . we stare into the sky at the beautiful lights and the rockets red glare and say things like - "It's just not as good as last year."
Need I say more?