I grew up during World War II, so it's hard for me to understand that patriotism has become a dirty word for so many, especially those, like my own children, who grew up during the Vietnam War.
I was in a creative writing class with many young people on September 12, 2001, and was shocked to hear them debating with some embarrassment whether or not to fly the American flag, as so many others were doing during that brief time when we all pulled together the way I remember folks doing during World War II. Back then, our men went off to war (my father volunteered), and our women folded bandages, did plane-spotting, planted Victory Gardens and poured coffee at the USO canteen.
But then, being from the same generation as those young people, I'm not sure President Obama really understands patriotism, either, as he keeps apologizing for the U.S. to other countries, many of which we support with foreign aid. So sad.
And now that we have an all-volunteer military doing their best to protect us here at home—some of them making the ultimate sacrifice—I just hope those same young people realize that sometimes others have fought and died so that they can debate whether or not it is honorable to fly the flag.
We all want peace, most of all those fighting men, but there are times when it does not come easily. Let us remember that we still have the privilege to live in the greatest country in the world, but remember what they say about eternal vigilance.
About Mary Lynn
Causes Mary Lynn Archibald Supports
Battered Women's Shelter, SPCA, Healdsburg Animal Shelter, Nature Conservancy