The National Debt became immeasurable to me today. I'm not talking about the financial debt. I am talking about the moral debt of each and every American in this country, from 1 day old to 110 years old.
Today the Johnson family lost not one but two sons in less than 24 hours to IEDs. This is on top of a 3rd son lost in Iraq in 2007. I am told there are more family members serving as well. I have dealt with many families who have lost a child to these wars, even a family that lost two sons. But I never dreamed I would hear of a family losing two sons in one day and three total.
I cannot fathom the faith and fortitude it will take for this family to endure the pain of this. But from the little I know of their patiotism and duty to country, they will endure and they will honor their fallen and continue to be the consumate example of what it means to be a Patriot.
Now I must look within myself and tear apart my definition of patriotism. I used to tell folks it didn't cost a dime to be patriotic. How can I look at this family and make a comment like that? What I now realize is that it doesn't cost a dime to be a good citizen. We can all do good deeds for our neighbors and even strangers, but that is not patiotism. That is just our moral and civic duty.
Patriotism is not displaying the flag in front of your house. Patriotism is not putting a yellow ribbon on your car saying you "Support our Troops." Patriotism is not reciting the Pledge of Allegiance or singing the National Anthem at a football game. That is just our moral and civic duty.
Patriotism is not donating a horse-drawn hearse for military funerals. It is just my moral and civic duty.
Patiotism is shedding your blood for your country. Patiotism is losing your life for your country. Patriotism is giving up a child for your country. Patriotism is holding your chin up as you watch your loved one leave for a war you are not sure he or she will return from. Patriotism is raising a family of warriors. Patriotism is fighting in the trenches of war and watching your brothers and sisters fall and doing all you can to save them, with no regard for your own safety or pain. Patriotism is something most Americans will never truly understand. The Johnson family must truly understand patriotism and its price.
As for the rest of us, we can only humble ourselves and strive to be "An American Worth Dying For."
I have created this blog to hopefully inspire average, everyday Americans to do their part in supporting our troops by being “An American Worth Dying For.” If you are new to the site, please read oldest to newest.