Posted tagged ‘patriotism’

Independence Day Love Letter

July 4, 2022

Good Morning, My Country,

amer heartHow are you? Fine, you say.  I’m not so sure.   Oh, you are still beautiful.  Sometimes you take my breath away, like when I sit here looking up at the snow covered Wasatch Mountains.  It reminds me of America the Beautiful.   Yes, I love the National Anthem but America the Beautiful was always our song, wasn’t it?   Purple mountains majesty above the fruited plain.  It always brings tears to my eyes when I hear Ray Charles sing it.  Crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.

purple (more…)

COVID Roulette

August 5, 2021

covidEverybody, I assume, has heard of Russian Roulette , the game you play with a revolver pistol for thrills (in this case the thrill of risking your life).   You need a revolver, a bullet and at least two players (I suppose you can play with one but in that case you might as well load six bullets and get it over with).   You put the bullet in one chamber, spin the cylinder, then the first player puts the barrel to his head and pulls the trigger.  The odds are 1 in 6 that the gun will fire and end his life.  At this point there are two variants of the game … the gun can be passed to the the next player without re-spinning the cylinder, in which case his chances of blowing his head off is 1 in 5.   You can see where this goes … on each turn that the gun doesn’t fire, the odds of the next player dying increases.   OR, the players can spin the cylinder before each turn, in which their odds of dying are the same each time.

I bring this up because it seems to me that many people in this beautiful country of ours are playing COVID Roulette, a game in which you choose not to not be vaccinated, risking illness or death for no good reason at all.   Yes, I know the odds of dying are much smaller than with a bullet and I know that it is your fundamental right as an American to risk your life if you want.   But here’s the thing … unlike Russian Roulette, COVID Roulette risks the lives of others.   What?  You say they can get vaccinated if they want to reduce the risk.   That might be a pretty good argument if it weren’t for the COVID variants you’ve probably been reading about.   Let me talk to you about variants for a moment**. (more…)

Memorial Day

May 31, 2021

This is has become my traditional Memorial Day Post.  I think it captures the spirit intended for the holiday.

I have traveled the political spectrum from fairly far left to fairly far right and back toward the middle in my seventy-six years.   But as I traveled that broad spectrum, I think I’ve always been a patriot in the sense that I love my country dearly and believe for any faults it may have, it is unique in the world.   When I was protesting the war and voting for George McGovern, I believed My Country Right or Wrong, but not America – Love It or Leave It or America, Fix It or &%$* It.  Every Memorial Day, I get to think back on my decision to seek a deferment from the draft based upon my employment in the defense industry, a decision that might lead some to question my claim of patriotism.   I won’t deny that my motivation wasn’t entirely selfless but I’d offer that some of the systems I helped develop for keeping track of Soviet submarines during the dark days of the Cold War contributed substantially to our National Defense.  Just watch The Hunt for Red October.  Still, sometimes I feel a little guilt that others served in my place.   At seventy-seven, I simultaneously abhor the realities of war (brought to us in gruesome detail by modern media) and resign myself to its necessity in what is, more than ever, a dangerous world.   Some of our military excursions have been essential, others have turned out to be unwise.  Both fall at the feet of our leaders, those of us that elect them and, sadly, those that don’t bother to vote. (more…)

Words

January 7, 2021

When I first decided to post about what went on in our nation’s capitol yesterday, I thought my opening sentence would be, I have no words for the events at the capitol.   But as much a lying seems to be in vogue these days, can’t start out a post with a lie.    Because of course, I have Words.  I always have Words.

How about disgraceful (adj – shameful; dishonorable; disreputable)?   As in: It is disgraceful that the president would stir up a crowd of extremists and send them off to attack the capitol?  (Yeah, he did).   Let’s try embarrassing (adj –  feeling shamed, humiliated, mortified).  As in: How embarrassing it was for the country that was once the beacon of democracy to have the world watch us behaving like a banana republic?   We can talk hypocrisy ( noun – the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform).  As in Can you believe Trump’s hypocrisy sending his supporters to storm the Capitol after attacking the BLM protesters for a photo op?  Here’s a good one: deplorables (noun – those worthy of severe condemnation or reproach).  As in: I disagreed with Hillary when she called all Trump supporters deplorables, but clearly those who attacked the Capitol today were just that.  They were not patriots (noun – one who loves and supports his or her country), as the witless Ivanka claimed, they were rioters (noun – participants in a noisy, violent public disorder) and in some cases, terrorists (noun – persons who use unlawful violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims).   Let’s do a two-for-one: delusions (noun – false beliefs that are resistant to reason or confrontation with actual fact) and cowardly (adj. – lacking courage).   As in: This happened partly due to cowardly senators and congressman who continued to enable Trump’s delusions about winning the election.  Here’s a vocabulary multiple choice question with sedition (noun – conduct or speech inciting people to rebel against the a state or country) or treason (noun – the crime of betraying one’s country).   Is President Trump is guilty of (a) sedition; (b) treason; or (c) both?

The news is mixed this morning.   Congress reconvened last night to confirm Joe Biden as our next president, but a number of Republicans still enabled Trump by objecting to the electoral count in swing states.   Criticism of Trump is rising … there have even been some calls for his removal via Article 25 … but his enablers, particularly in places like Fox News, continue to support him.   According to a YouGov poll, 45% of Republican voters backed the attack on the Capitol building to some degree.   More than half of them believe Trump won the election, and I suspect most Republicans wish he had.   I have Words for that, too, but none I choose to post online.  Except for this:

God Bless America and Keep Her Safe

Love Letter

November 19, 2020

Good Morning, My Country,

amer heartHow are you? Fine, you say.  I’m not so sure.   Oh, you are still beautiful.  Sometimes you take my breath away, like when I sit here looking up at the snow covered Wasatch Mountains.  It reminds me of America the Beautiful.   That was always our song, wasn’t it?   Purple mountains majesty above the fruited plain.  It always brings tears to my eyes when I hear Ray Charles sing it.  Crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.

purple (more…)

Divided

November 8, 2020

When Donald Trump won the election in 2016, I knew of several friends who celebrated with a glass of champagne.   In the last few days, I’ve heard of several doing the same to celebrate the victory of Joe Biden.   I will be skipping the champagne toast even though I voted for Joe Biden. As a moderate, I disagreed with some of President Trumps policies, just as I did those of his predecessor but my vote was predicated largely on the character (or lack thereof) of President Trump and his penchant for verbal or physical violence against what he saw as the other side.   But how can I celebrate when we are still a nation badly divided? (more…)

Memorial Day 2020

May 25, 2020

This is has become my traditional Memorial Day Post.  I think it captures the spirit intended for the holiday.

I have traveled the political spectrum from fairly far left to fairly far right and back toward the middle in my seventy-six years.   But as I traveled that broad spectrum, I think I’ve always been a patriot in the sense that I love my country dearly and believe for any faults it may have, it is unique in the world.   When I was protesting the war and voting for George McGovern, I believed My Country Right or Wrong, but not America – Love It or Leave It or America, Fix It or &%$* It.  Every Memorial Day, I get to think back on my decision to seek a deferment from the draft based upon my employment in the defense industry, a decision that might lead some to question my claim of patriotism.   I won’t deny that my motivation wasn’t entirely selfless but I’d offer that some of the systems I helped develop for keeping track of Soviet submarines during the dark days of the Cold War contributed substantially to our National Defense.  Just watch The Hunt for Red October.  Still, sometimes I feel a little guilt that others served in my place.   At seventy-six, I simultaneously abhor the realities of war (brought to us in gruesome detail by modern media) and resign myself to its necessity in what is, more than ever, a dangerous world.   Some of our military excursions have been essential, others have turned out to be unwise.  Both fall at the feet of our leaders, those of us that elect them and, sadly, those that don’t bother to vote. (more…)

Veterans Day 2018

November 5, 2018

militaryI have never served in the U.S. military.   In the late sixties, when young men my age were staring the draft in the eye … with horrible images of the Vietnam War staring back at us from our TVs every night … I was working for a defense company that designed equipment for the Navy’s submarines, at that time considered a major deterrent against attack by Russian submarines.   I filed for a deferment with the support of my employer who was willing to state that my work was critical to national security and … four defermonths later … I received a letter stating that my request had been denied.  I was officially draftable.  Recently married and not wanting to spend two years of my life in the jungles of Vietnam, I applied and was accepted to the Air Force Officer Candidate School.  A few days before I was ready to accept my commission, I got a second letter saying my deferment had been granted. (more…)

Independence Day

July 4, 2018

3dflags-usa1-3I consider myself a patriot. A right-leaning but moderate patriot. I believe that which way you lean … right or left … has nothing to do with whether you are a patriot. In part, being a patriot means truly believing that the way you lean … your political and moral compass … is best for the USA.  That, however, is just a start. In this country, acknowledging that others have a right to believe differently … and say so … is also a condition for being a patriot. As a patriot, I want to post something for our nation’s birthday, something positive, or at least hopeful. Not easy, watching what is going on in my country these days, both sides yelling and calling names. Just out of curiosity, I looked back at Bud’s Blog over the last nine years and found a post, Independence, from five years ago.   We had a different president and a different party in charge, but my message applies just as well today.  In part, it said this:

declaration I got up this morning and read the Declaration of Independence in its entirety, not just the beginning that we all find so stirring. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. Stirring. To my embarrassment (blush) as I read on, though, I realized I had never read the whole document, even though I’ve stood in front of it … in some awe … in the National Archives.

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Last Flight Home

March 9, 2017

american airlinesToday I am flying home from a business trip to Huntsville, Alabama. Only Monday, I posted Nothing To Do But Write from the DFW airport, complaining about business travel, particularly by air.    The business went well, in spite of missed or late flights, missing visit requests, and endless meetings. We were up early to catch a flight to Dallas today on a regional jet, meaning a plane with even smaller seats than usual. I’m tired, my back is sore, and now I’m crammed into the exit row with two other broad shouldered guys.  There’s not room for the three of us to sit back, a situation in which the passenger on the aisle usually loses. That would be Older Eyes, leaning into the aisle.

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