Archive for May, 2015
Many of us remember that on September 11, 2001, an American flag was almost impossible to find. Everyone was sold out. Americans, regardless of political party, race, religion, or world view, used the Stars and Stripes as a symbol of not only patriotism, but solidarity. We had taken a hit, but we were walking tall with our chests puffed out. For a glimmer of time, we were strong again. Walmart, had increased flag sales from 6400 to 116,000 that day. Without even knowing who the enemy was, instantly flags lined the streets and nearly all vehicles had a flag sticker somewhere on it.
My how the times have changed. In a mere 14 years after September 11,2001, the flags are gone. They are rare to find on homes and even rarer on businesses. Flag sales have dropped from $51.7 million in 2001 to a mere $4million today. Even now, 94% of all flags are made over seas and mostly in China.
Why the drop? The religion of political correctness. It is an insidious disease that has taken over our country without any pushback. We don’t want to offend anyone. There is no greater offense in America today than to offend someone, no matter how irrational the perception of the offense may be. Businesses are afraid of losing business to a vocal minority group, or even worse, a protest in front of their store.
Most of remember starting our school day with our right hand on our heart saying the Pledge of Allegiance. Of all the tasks we didn’t want to do in our school day, no one ever grumbled about the Pledge in front of our flag. Now it has become optional and the students can pick and choose which words they’d like to use. Is this the students idea? No, its the teachers and administrators that are the indoctrinators of political correctness. The University of California at Irvine even banned the flag from the campus. Was it those wild, out of control students? Nope, it was the faculty and professors. They stated that the flag was offensive and oppressive. Meanwhile anti-Semitism is on the rise in our colleges.That seems to be a contradiction of values to me. I guess political correctness zealots have their hypocrites too. They sure do love our American funding though.
Considering all of the above, its little wonder that the Gadsden ” Don’t Tread on Me ” flag is gaining a resurgence. It has become attached to the Tea Party and Liberatarian Party and many Americans who feel that we are in a country that has lost its way. The idea of using this flag as a symbol to remind us of our foundational values, has drawn the ire of political correctness police and has been banned in many places as well. The irony of this is that the Gadsden flag predates our familiar 13 star flag and was inspired by Benjamin Franklin. I guess they wont be teaching about Ben Franklin in public school anymore.
So friends, today we honor those who gave their lives to defend our once great country. Lets use the American flag to continue to honor them, and lets pray and honor those that have been left behind. If you have a place to put an American flag, please do it. If you decide to use the Gadsden flag, well, that’s ok with me too. Honor, friends.
We have holidays to honor our mothers, fathers and even grandparents, but none to honor the most courageous parent, the mother and father that puts their child up for adoption. In America, not counting foster care, 136,000 mothers and fathers put their babies up for adoption annually. There is a sort of sad stigma attached to birth parents and I believe that is a horrible injustice. We live in a time that abortion has become a right and there are chemicals available to eliminate a pregnancy for any reason, but these women stick it out and give their child a chance instead of taking the easy out. That is something I admire friends.
The reasons to offer up a child are many. Financial conditions, age of the mother, perhaps addictions or even simply bad timing or judgment are often the motivation. The conditions that led to that choice shouldn’t overshadow the priceless gift that these folks have given the child and another family. I cant even imagine how difficult it must be, to go through the whole 9 months of giving life, and allowing someone else the opportunity to give your child a better chance in life. That is incredibly selfless. What a noble end in a complicated situation.
Do those children ever turn out well? Steve Jobs and Dave Thomas did just fine. So did Eleanor Roosevelt, Faith Hill and Nelson Mandela. Want more? How about Leo Tolstoy, Edgar Allen Poe, Nat King Cole, John Hancock and even Bill Clinton and Moses. All had different circumstances, some tragic and complicated, but all were given a chance to succeed.
I don’t know how many birth parents, men and women, will read this, but I want you to know that I admire you for the decision you made. You didn’t take the easy out. You gave your son or daughter a chance for a better life. I hope that Christians will stand up to honor these folks, the unsung heroes.