Saturday, July 5, 2008

America again

Well another Independence Day has come and gone. The day itself was quiet for me because I didn't go anywhere or do much of anything during the day, and mowed the lawn in the evening. It seems a shame to do that on a holiday, but I haven't always been able to mow when I needed to. If the weather stays dry, I shouldn't have to mow again for at least a week.

Also, it costs to go see fireworks displays except for the one that happens here in Kiefer, and I'm not that impressed with them. Sure, they are pretty and interesting, but I would rather see a firepower demonstration. A firepower demonstration is when mortars or artillery from different units, or the guns from several ships, fire at a common target or target area, usually at night. Soon after I joined the National Guard, my best friend from the old neighborhood joined too. He went into the mortar platoon, I went into communications. He got to participate in several firepower demonstrations. I never saw one.

Don't think for one minute that my staying home and mowing indicates I don't love this country. I do love America. Similar to what I said in my previous post, outward expressions of patriotism are not as important as how you live everyday.

I don't want to rehash that issue, but I do want to revisit another issue about America where my view does not match the view of many others.

I'm sure that yesterday that many preachers said that America is a Christian nation, or they will say it tomorrow during Sunday morning services.

I'm not sure that a Christian nation is possible. The view of what many people think a Christian nation is, is not biblical or realistic.

The original use of the term "Christian" in the Bible referred to disciples, or followers, of Christ. Has America followed Christ? Are all Americans followers of Christ? Has any nation ever followed Christ?

Also the term "Christian" is defined as a born-again believer. When someone is born in America, are they born a born-again believer. Obviously not.

I believe that too many believe that you can not be a good citizen of the United States without being a Christian. I reject that notion. To be a good citizen of America, you mainly need to believe in what this country was created to be, a land of freedom.

I do see that America is a nation with a Christian heritage. Certain phrases and principles in our founding documents relate to things in the Bible. I haven't taken the time to research this in depth, but one example I can easily point to is in the Preamble to the Constitution. The clause that says "insure domestic Tranquility," relates to Paul's instruction to Timothy to pray for "all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life."

Thursday, July 3, 2008


As I write this, it sounds as if a firefight is happening outside my house. My town has been invaded, but for a good reason. The Kiefer Lions Club holds their Independence Day celebration on July 3rd. It draws in lots of visitors, such that the population almost triples on this evening. The fireworks display will start soon, and then it will sound like a regular bombardment! May locals will blow up their own money, uh, I mean, fireworks while waiting for the big display.

Why celebrate? I have heard negative comments made about America, and I can see that some do not have the patriotic feelings I have. As far as I am concerned, that is their problem, not mine.

It does not matter to me if the United States of America is the greatest country on the face of the Earth or not. I do believe it is, but even if it weren't, I'd still love this country. Why? AMERICA IS MY HOME!

If you were to come into my house and start messing with my family and my stuff, I wouldn't just sit by and watch, or whine and beg you to stop. Why should I be different about my country?

I know we have lost some freedoms, and some have eroded in the name of protecting us from ourselves. But America more than any other country still stands for freedom. Some have called Bush a dictator, but he will leave office peacefully in a few months, and his critics will still be able to speak and move about freely. In many other countries, you criticize the nation's leader, and that might be the last thing you say in public for a while, if not forever.

Now I'm not one of those that waves the flag, or wears American flag shirts or hats all the time. I do have a hat with the flag on it, and another hat with a flag pin on it, but I don't wear them often. I usually wear hats only during the cold weather seasons, and which hat I wear depends on whatever else I am wearing or the occasion. To me, its not as important to show your patriotism by what you wear or display, as it is to show your patriotism by how you act everyday.

And speaking of displays, if you are going to display the flag, be a REAL American and display it RESPECTFULLY. I do not enjoy seeing a flag that is tattered by weather instead of combat. Neither do I enjoy seeing flag flown at night without a light on it. Whenever I see a flag in a storm or even a routine rain shower, I wonder if it is weatherproof. I am glad I no longer see those flags that fly from car windows. All too often they would fall off and the driver would not retrieve it, and if it stayed on, it wound up battered. If you wish to fly the flag to show your feelings about your country, use your brain and find out the guidelines for displaying it properly.

Have a Happy Independence Day!