IT’S NOT JUST THE FLAG IT’S WHAT IT STANDS FOR….


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            As a Vietnam veteran, an American, and a Christian I want to make it clear that I HONOR the American flag and what I’m going to say is not to diminish that only to make it clear to all the haters of America and the flag burners why I get upset when you disrespect the flag.  I was unfriended on Facebook over my adamant honor of the American Flag and told, “It is just a flag.”  That being said, it is not the material that the stars and stripes are on that is the core of my respect for the flag it is what it stands for and has stood for since its birth when the legend is that Betsy Ross made it for General George Washington.  Frankly I do not care if it was Betsy Ross the fact that it is matters to me! 

            June 14, 1777 the Continental Congress passed the first Flag Act:  “Resolved, That the flag of the United States be made of thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation.”  The ensuing years from 1777 to 1960 has necessitated Congress to change the shape, design, and arrangement of the flag to allow for additional stars and stripes to be added to reflect the admission of each new state.  Today the American flag has thirteen horizontal stripes, seven red alternating with six white.  The stripes represent the original thirteen colonies; the stars represent the 50 states of the Union.  The colors of the flag are symbolic as well:  Red symbolizes Hardiness and Valor, White symbolizes Purity and Innocence and Blue represents Vigilance, Perseverance, and Justice.

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            This flag was there at Fort Ticonderoga and the Battle of Saratoga.  It was there at the Battle of Tippecanoe in the War of 1812.  It was there in WWI and at Iowa Jima in WWII It was there on the beaches of Normandy.  It was there in Korea.  It was there in Vietnam.  It has been there in every conflict that the United States has been engaged and those fighting under this Ensign recognized its significance and honored its purpose.  It flies at the White House, Congress, State Capitals across this land, is proudly waved on the 4th of July celebrations, Memorial Day, and many other national holidays.  It files at the memorials for WWII veterans and the Vietnam Wall and it flies at my house and in my heart.  I AM AN AMERICAN and proudly so even in the dire condition she has been relegated today.

            In the 1960’s while serving this nation I traveled many places in this world and whenever I saw the Stars and Stripes it brought a sense of pride to my heart and I always paused and saluted that ensign of this great nation.  I do not place it above God but I fought under it and recognize the many that have fought and the fallen fighting for freedom around the world under this banner.  They did not fight for just a piece of cloth they fought for a nation, a purpose, a people, and a principle.  You can disrespect the flag and while I acknowledge you have a right to do so I will also tell you that I will not sit silently by as you do in my presence.  Yes, I am a Christian and I will not sit silently by and have people blaspheme my God without speaking up and I will not sit mute while the haters of America tarnish our national symbol – THE FLAG.

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            When I see athletes, politicians or anyone showing disrespect for our flag at the playing of the National Anthem I am angered.  Oh, you may say, ‘Roy, as a Christian that should not be  bothered by that.’  Maybe you are right but it does!  I lost friends and people I knew in Southeast Asia and have too much respect for the fallen to dishonor their memories by passivity.  I am willing to forgive all offenses and will defend your right to disrespect the flag but I must insist that you understand and respect my right to take exception to your words and/or actions.

             This nation evidenced in the volumes produced by the founders, honored God, liberty, justice, and freedom.  The flag that represents this nation is a symbol of those things.  Have we departed from those principles in America?  Sadly it seem that many have but there are  millions of us who have not and still hold dear the principles upon which this nation was established.  It is not a rag as Charlie Daniels sings ITS A FLAG and it is the AMERICAN FLAG.  It is symbolic of what we were established to be and what we are supposed to stand for!

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           In 1892 it read “I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the republic for which it stands, one nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”  In 1954 it was altered to “I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”  That is how it reads currently and I proudly make that pledge as I make my pledge to my God as well.

             God bless you and God bless America!

LET’S JUST LEGISLATE OUR VIEWS AND OUTLAW ALL OTHERS…


 

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            My title is completely ‘tongue in cheek’ and I do believe you can see how we might run into a small problem with that approach?  What if we do not all agree on what is to be outlawed?  Even those within the various political, social, financial, or religious sectors do not all agree so there would be elements of those groups unhappy with a particular piece of legislation making it impossible to accomplish. Legislating behavior, belief, or thought is not only, not practical it is not possible not to mention the violations to our American Constitution, rights, and liberties.

             YET there are more and more people including this administration wanting to do just that.  There are those on the liberal side of the equation who are willing to completely rescind the 1st Amendment (for conservatives) in order to silence all affronts to the liberal ideology and to silence all conservative ideology because they consider it harmful to the liberal cause and society.  Therefore they are perfectly willing to have federal monitors in the newsrooms, classrooms, and workplace to police speech in an effort to police thought!

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            One of the latest attempts to legislate thought, speech, and behavior is the push for the NFL to administer a 15 yard penalty for use of the “N” word and the 2nd offense has you ejected from the game.  John Wooten of the Fritz Pollard Alliance is one of the strongest proponents of this saying that this is the absolute worst word in the history of America and then Michael Wilbon of ESPN is opposed to the white owners, etc. making this ruling and while he wants to get the word out of the work place doesn’t feel that this is the way to accomplish it.  I bring this up only to point out that flawed logic in attempting to legislate, thought, speech, or attitude.

             We have segments of our society where various words are used and, to them, it is acceptable but if anyone outside that segment uses the same words they are offensive.  There are words like the “B” word in reference to a female (Bossy and the one that rhymes with itch), ‘’Ho”, the “F” word in reference to a homosexual and so many more.  Society has a way of dealing with offenses it deems unacceptable such as shunning, ostracizing, and more.   I see this type of problem a societal problem signifying the failure of the home, extended family, and church to do its job. 

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            If a person is prone to use racial slurs or slurs of any kind, legislation will not change their attitude or heart and will not transform them into a different person.  Tyrannical governments throughout history have sought to police speech, control attitudes, and shape thought in the public and even private sectors.  Even now in America it is a federal felony to criticize the President in the presence of the Secret Service.  Is this America?  It places people in bondage but does nothing to truthfully change their hearts or minds.  If we are going to tear down racial and ideological barriers we cannot do it with thought or speech policing society we have to do it with dialogue that is civil and honest.

             Racism is not a one way street.  Bigotry is not isolated to one sector of society.  Differences in political ideology is not unhealthy in itself the unhealthy aspect is when we attempt to silence all opposing views.  There are many things that I do not like and wish, were not present in our society but they are and no amount of legislation will change that.  It may drive it under the surface but it is still there and will likely become more ingrained and deeply rooted in the heart as a result making the situation worse not better.

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            This is another area that government should and is constitutionally directed to stay out of. The founders gave us the 1st Amendment because they understood the impossibility and the unhealthiness of attempting to legislate, morality or ideology.  We should all, regardless of our ideology, religious beliefs, and moral stances oppose an erosion of our 1st Amendment Rights and oppose any and all efforts to allow or make the federal or state government ‘thought police’ or ‘speech police.’  Let society deal with those who step over the lines and it will be dealt with.  Let the parents teach their children proper respect, let the church teach godly principles regarding our fellow man, and allow society to effectively deter that which is morally, spiritually, or ideologically out of line. 

             This is another example of the dangers of an overreaching federal government that begins to reach into our lives in small segments until it is in TOTAL CONTROL.  But if we are going to police thought, speech, and attitudes whose examples are we going to use as acceptable?  Mine of course!  (You must know that last comment was completely sarcastic).

             God bless you and God bless America!

A REPUBLIC IF YOU CAN KEEP IT….


           

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            The story goes that as Benjamin Franklin was leaving the Constitutional Convention he was asked by a lady, “What have you given us?”  Franklin replied, “A republic, if you can keep it.”  The conversation with Mrs. Powell actually occurred so it seems and Mr. Franklin’s statement was more profound than one could have imagined.  We have kept it for over 200 years not 400 like Congresswoman Shelia Jackson Lee declared that the Constitution had served well for over 400 years.  What is a couple hundred years to a person that declared herself to be a freed slave by Congress as well? 

             We have a Constitutional Republic not a Pure Democracy or we have a Democratic Republic with a Constitution, Laws, a system of checks and balances with three distinctive and separate arms of the federal government.  That is being eroded today to the point that the lines are not just blurred but are being erased by the phone and pen of one Barack H. Obama as he uses his Executive Fiat.  Oh, I readily acknowledge that he may not have issued more than any other president but his have been far more devastating to the Constitutional integrity of our government than previous uses.  The Executive Order was to be limited but it seems that this president believes that because he is president he can do whatever he wishes.  Congress and the Courts seem to believe that as well as they offer little to no real resistance to his actions.  The losers in this – THE AMERICAN PEOPLE!  Mr. Franklin what would you say if you saw us today?

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            The Democrats have demonstrated a willingness to trash the Constitution to press forward their agenda and a willingness to utilize all agencies of the federal government to torment, harass, intimidate, and punish anyone who opposes their agenda.  That alone should be reason enough to want to see them removed from office via the ballot box in November.  God forbid that we should have another four or eight years of liberal leftwing ideology in the White House and controlling at least one division of Congress.  If we survive the final three years of this administration we must move toward Constitutional integrity or we have ‘not kept the republic’ that the founders gave us and Mr. Franklin’s words become prophetic in a very negative sense.

             The Establishment Republicans are also complicit in this by attacking the various conservative and constitutional groups that are identified with the party under the encouragement of people like Karl Rove, John McCain, and others.  It seems that they are willing to lose national elections so long as they can maintain their positions of power and influence and access to the lobbyist, money, and power.  The Constitution is only a vehicle, to seek to solidify their positions not actually follow it faithfully, defend it loyally, and honor it with integrity.  There are a few that actually respect the Constitution and want to see America return to ‘limited government’, ‘fiscal responsibility’, and a ‘three branch’ system of government.  Precious few, but they exist.

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            However, if we are to have any hope to ‘keep the republic’ we have to sometimes swallow bitter pills and cast votes that we would prefer not to cast.  The Democrats must be unseated from power and the Republican Party must be cleaned up or replaced but that will not and cannot happen in this election cycle in 2014 and/or 2016.  The process will take longer and possibly decades, if we have that much time.  I want to keep the republic and therefore am prepared to do whatever I can, in the primaries and runoffs to unseat the RINO’s, liberals, and Big Government bureaucrats that now hold office or seek office.  Once the primaries and runoffs are over and we are faced with voting in a way to defeat the Democrat I will do so because over 90% of those with a (D) after their name in Washington have voted with the administration and held the party line.  That means, if we are to reclaim our government they have to go. Then we must diligently work to establish a viable third party, replace the current Republican Party or reclaim it with Constitutional Conservatives.  None of those will be easy and at times will be quite painful politically but if we are to ‘keep the republic’ we must all do our part to boot the left from the White House, remove their grip on the Senate and keep them from reclaiming the House.

             I know many will not agree with me and will declare that because of ‘principle’ they will not vote for the Republican or Democrat and in many cases that will mean the Democrat goes into or retains the office and pushes us nearer and nearer to ‘losing the republic’I am not asking anyone to compromise their principles only that we all consider the cost of allowing the liberal Democrats to retain power.  

             America needs us to stand up, stand tall, and stand firm.  America needs us to become engaged and active in the political process.  America needs her patriots now as much and possible more than ever!   Stand with America is all I ask!

             God bless you and God bless America!

 

WHERE TO FROM HERE????


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            When I look at my nation, my community, my church, and my life I see two options each three-fold.  One is certain defeat and the other filled with obstacles but offers hope for victory.  It would seem that with that said everyone would immediately take the one that offers hope but it seems that is the road less traveled in our nation and much of our world today.  It is not necessarily the easy road and certainly not devoid of potholes, obstacles, and opposition but when you look toward the finish line you see HOPE and not the fictional ‘Hope and Change’ offered by the person currently occupying the Oval Office and carrying the title President of the United States of America.

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             As we ‘look back’ many do so LONGINGLY with nostalgia wishing for the ‘good old days’ at least with respect to the political.  Some look back LONGINGLY with a yearning for a return to the days when America was a Constitutional Republic although most of us were not alive when it truly was but those of us who are ‘baby boomers’ can recall when it was much nearer that reality than today’s SUPER CENTRALIZED BIG GOVERNMENT monstrosity where the federal government has its tentacles in every facet of our lives and clamoring for more daily.  It is not a bad thing to ‘remember’ the past but it must always be remembered that it is THE PAST.  We cannot relive it and while we may revive its spirit it is still a bygone era so we dare not become fixated on THE PAST.

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            As we ‘look at the present’ many do so LAMENTINGLY and are overcome with grief as to the current state of affairs politically, morally, socially, and even religiously.  Today, in America, we are totally dominated politically by the ‘professional politician’ and powerful ‘special interest groups’ rather than have ‘citizen representation’ and ‘representatives’ in Congress or even the White House.  There is cause to LAMENT and if that spurs us into action to positively change the current conditions then that is a powerful weapon but if it causes us to bury our heads in the sand, throw up our hands and throw in the towel it is incredibly negative and sadly in the 2012 Elections I saw evidence of that in the refusal of many to vote.  If we chain ourselves to the past or become overcome with the apparent hopelessness of the present we will NEVER GAIN THE FUTURE VICTORIOUSLY!

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            As we ‘look toward the future’ many do so incredibly LEERY and the skepticism, lack of trust and confidence, and unsurety of where this nation and world is going paralyzes with fear, frustration, and hopelessness.  While it is not a negative thing to be cautious and aware of the dubiousness of the professional political class it is negative if we allow it to PARALYZE us and enfeeble us to the place that we are incapacitated politically, socially, morally, and religiously.  If we allow it to cause us to become ‘wise as serpents’ and ‘harmless as doves’ and prayerfully approach the future with a view of the positive of the past, the failures and mistakes of the present and the Hope of the future it is POSITIVE!

             I, almost daily, have people who truly love this nation and genuinely want limited government, citizen representatives in Washington, a reduction of the debt and deficit nationally, and a return to a Constitutional Republic declare they are so depleted of hope they have given up.  As a minister I have preached for most all my years of Christian service – ‘The devil cannot win unless we quit.’  He will not win the ultimate victory even if we do and the only way he can win in our lives is if we quit!  That is true politically as well in my view.  If we continue to fight the good fight and win the battles where we can there is hope that we can win the war.  However if we throw in the towel, raise the white flag of surrender and become so disillusioned that we lose all hope and draw back from the battle WE HAVE LOST!  I cannot face my children or grandchildren if I do that so I will continue the fight as long as I have breath.

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            America we MUST NOT SURRENDER!  Those who want to destroy us from without and from within must be resisted.  Although there is massive voter fraud and elections being stolen with each election cycle WE MUST NOT SURRENDER!  That is why it is important that we volunteer as poll watchers in our precincts, and become involved on the grass roots level.  We still have HOPE so do not look back so longingly, lament so much in the present, and become so leery of the future that you SURRENDER.  Allow the past, the present, and the hope of the future to embolden you and encourage you.  WE CAN if we stand together and refuse to quit!

             God bless you and God bless America!

 

THE PARALLEL UNIVERSE OF POLITICS AND POLITICIANS….


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            Seriously, I have never delved into the possibility of a ‘parallel universe’ but after the past few years watching politics and politicians I am beginning to wonder if it is possible.  It seems in their world ‘fantasy is reality’ and ‘reality is fantasy’.  Some have suggested that aliens dropped some of them off because they were without use for their research and they were purging other worlds.  Understand I say all that ‘tongue in cheek’ but how do we explain their complete lack of touch with ‘reality’.

             I guess it is probably best described as a ‘quest for power’.  It seems that either before elected or shortly after assimilation into the Washington culture they evolve into ‘professional politicians’ and strive to become members of the ‘Political Elite Society’ with position, power, and re-election being the most important items on their agenda.  I truly wonder what our Founding Fathers would say if they could see the way our present day politicians are sorting through what’s left of the Republic seeking to solidify their positions, pocketbooks, and power with little or no regard to the Republic!  I wonder!  However I suspect they would say, “We warned you!”

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            It may be too late to save the Republic, I don’t know but I do know that we cannot give up the effort.  If we concede defeat and become docile we will have our liberties stripped from us, our constitution completely shredded, and our Republic destroyed.  The effort or actions that are leading us to that place are coming from many on both sides of the aisles.  It is for that reason that it is incumbent on each of us to carefully vet, research, question, and seek to know as much about each candidate as we can before casting our ballot no matter the office or party.

             In my view, the day of just voting along party lines is past or should be.  You may disagree and as many of those I talk to on both sides tell me, “Well a person of this or that party even if bad is infinitely better than someone from the other party.”  Sometimes that is true and sometimes it is an excursion in that parallel universe of the professional politicians where ‘fantasy is reality’ and ‘reality is fantasy’.  When a politicians consistent record is liberal to moderate and then just before primary season switches to a strict conservative vote you can rest assured that candidate IS NOT CONSERVATIVE.   I find that more offensive than if they followed their core beliefs consistently even if I disagree with them.  Just be honest with me!

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            To cite one area that never ceases to amaze me is UNEMPLOYMENT.  We continually have reports from official and reputable organizations about the numbers of jobs created, the number of new claims for unemployment benefits, and the numbers of those who have completely dropped out of the job search market.  If a person has been unemployed long enough to no longer receive benefits they magically are dropped from the numbers used to calculate ‘unemployment rates’.  That is ‘fantasy’ and ‘reality’ says that if we truly calculated the number of people who COULD or WOULD WORK against the number who ARE WORKING the percentage would not be under 8% it would be well above 15% and probably higher.  The government manipulation of numbers, dollars, etc. in order to give the appearance of the economy getting better is not just ‘fantasy’ it is ‘disrespectful’ to America and Americans.  It is a slap in our faces and a clear attempt to dupe the public in order to solidify their position and re-election.  When, ‘reelection’ becomes more important than the ‘republic’ and the ‘public’ it is time for change and that does not matter what party they affiliate with.

             The primaries are upon us and this is the time to vigorously engage in attempts to replace those who are guilty and take the battle to the general election in November.  Sadly, too many just sit back and watch and then complain.  Personally, if I chose not to vote I would feel guilty in complaining about conditions or politicians.  That is my view and costs you nothing!  You have as much right to yours as I do mine.  I just hope that you become involved in the process because it truly does have a direct impact on your life!

             God bless you and God bless America!

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WE NEED TO REMEMBER and RESPOND…..