Syndicated by: Montana News
By Marc Kelley
So many times these days, we all get caught up in living our own lives, dealing with our own personal issues and managing our own challenges. Like many of you, I have become numb to the divisive, hateful, identity politics which permeate the news coverage on a daily basis. I have reached my saturation point, no longer do I allow the negativity to define my mood or my expectations for the day.
As I do every morning, I woke up, grabbed a cup of coffee and headed to my office to check my emails and respond to my customers and suppliers. This Tuesday, was no different than any other Tuesday. I was, as usual, caught up in my own list of things I needed to accomplish, unaware of the date or the significance of the day. The television was on in the living room and I could hear the background noise; but again, I paid no attention. Then… I heard the tolling of the bells coming from the ceremony in New York, in remembrance of the souls that were lost 17 years ago when our country was attacked. I stopped working and went into the living room. My heart was filled with sorrow and my eyes were filled with tears, as I listen to the names of the lost, being read aloud. September 11, 2001, has become for me, like many others who love this country, the Pearl Harbor of our generation. The anniversary of this day always causes me to stop, reflect and to experience the feelings of what it means to be an American.
There were no politics in play on that clear September day, no protests of our flag or our Veterans and no party lines were drawn or defined by ideology. We mourned together as one country, one people, each of us enduring the pain and sadness that was brought to our land. I watched as the footage of then President Bush, stood atop a crushed FDNY fire engine, speaking through a bullhorn, telling the American people, he heard our voices; and how, very soon, the people who knocked down our twin towers, would also be hearing our voices. After seventeen years, so many feelings are still so close to the surface. We have been thru two wars because the radical Islamic Jihadist's wanted to impose pain on the "Great Satan". We have spent countless resources and lost many of the best young people, our nation has ever produced.
Sadly, 17 years after our country came together on that horrific and shocking day, we have begun fighting another fight, a fight which all Americans should be against. Over the past two years we have witnessed some very poor behavior from many political leaders on both sides of the aisle. Athletes and celebrities alike, protest our flag, attack our country and call for Socialism to replace the very system which built our country. It is difficult for many of us to sit idly and remain quiet, while those by virtue of their social status, get to express their right to Free Speech. For a reason I simply cannot grasp, it has become "cool" to denigrate the USA. It is now acceptable, to exhibit behavior which only a few years ago, would have resulted in the public shunning of anyone who would dare behave in this manner. Yet, because those who are participating in this disgrace, are fortunate enough to live in the greatest country in the world, their right to behave in this manner is protected. They get to enjoy the freedom to express their opinions and their feelings of oppression, while at the same time deriding the blue collar, God fearing, working class.
However, rather than dwelling on the anger and the sorrow this behavior has caused to the people who love the USA, I would rather use this time to say thank you, to the very people these small minded, empty barrels, seem to find so offensive. To our Military personnel, who stand watch over our country, making sure we bring the fight to our enemies neighborhood, rather than having to fight on U.S. soil. To the Law Enforcement agencies who keep our hometown streets safe, so that our children can run and play. To the Firefighters, the Paramedics and the EMTs who run toward trouble, while everyone else is running away. Simply saying thank you, will never be adequate or commensurate to your bravery or to your sacrifice's.
There are many people in this country, who feel exactly as I do. Many people who love this country and believe we are a just and decent people, willing to help others in anyway we can. Times change, situations change and political ideology changes; what does not change, is the fabric of the people who make up our great county. We must remember and honor the sacrifice's made by so many, who preserve and up hold our right, to do and say exactly what we believe in. We are a diverse nation, and we will never agree on every issue and we all have the right to express our feelings. I believe this is a very good thing and it is my sincere hope, you will teach your children, America is a GREAT country. When times are tough, we stand together, because it is the right thing to do. We stand for our National Anthem, because we honor and acknowledge the sacrifices which were made by others; and to insure, we continue to have the rights and freedoms, that make America, unlike, any other place on earth.