O beautiful for heroes prov’d/In liberating strife,/Who more than self their country loved,/And mercy more than life.—-America The Beautiful by Katherine Lee Bates.
The subject of today’s post boys and girls is —-Patriotism. Last night my mom my mom and I watched a movie on Netflix called For Me And My Gal. It is a 1940’s musical, complete with all that that type of movie entails, and starred Judy Garland and Gene Kelly. What really struck me though, is the heavy stream of patriotism that runs this picture.
For example, (I will try not to spoil the movie for you, in case you want to see it) in one scene a leading character does something to avoid going into the service for a few weeks. Although he has his reasons, the other characters react coldly to him, even cutting him out of their lives. Isn’t that a bit much, we might ask? Well yes and no.
One thing we need to remember is what decade this was. The 1940’s was an extremely patriotic decade, especially during the war years. And I’m not talking about a flag on your house, and a bumper sticker on your car, either. I mean the women working in the factories to keep up production while the men were over seas, selling and buying war bonds, sending letters and care packages to the soldiers, growing victory gardens, conserving rubber and grease, and honoring the armed forces as the heroes they were type of patriotism.
I’m not saying that the decade didn’t have its issues and problems, or that we need to go back the 1940’s. But I do believe that we need to go back to that kind of love for God and country. Regardless of our feelings on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and whether or not we feel that our troops should or should not be there, we should honor and support our armed forces.
I am not trying to start an argument or take up sides, there are more than enough voices out there doing that already. I am simply trying to say that if we don’t get back to that sense of patriotism, and backing our men and women overseas, how is that helping our country? How would we feel if we were them, over in a foreign country, risking their lives and then reading somewhere that other Americans really don’t care about them.
People from other nations fight their fiercest battles and risk their lives, trying to achieve the freedom and rights we have in this nation. America has always been a beacon of hope and liberty in the world, shouldn’t we remember and support the people fighting for us, before we aren’t?
In conclusion I want to make clear, supporting the troops is not the same as agreeing with the war. That would be like saying you would never watch any of your favorite actors anymore, because you didn’t like his last movie. So grab a pen and write a letter, visit Anysoldier and send a care package, check on a veteran, fly your flag, get another bumper sticker, wear your t-shirt, be American!