Not many living today have vivid recall of World War II. I do. That war was fought during my very early childhood. My first real memory was the day my father left home in his Army uniform and shipped out to the Philippines. I was three years old but remember that so clearly.
It total, six of close family served. From submarine service to bomber navigator, they served honorably. By some miracle all of them returned. None of them ever spoke about their experiences. An estimate 420,000 US military and civilians lost their lives in that war.
Dozens of Hollywood stars enlisted and many of them saw duty on the field of battle. Many female stars visited military battlefields and hospitals until the war ended in 1945. Watch our troops sing this classic song with Vera Lynn. To this day, I cannot watch this video without having memories fill my heart and tears fill my eyes.
Fast forward only 75 years to 2020 and try measuring patriotism today. In many cities there is a new kind of war going on. Mayors and some governors are enabling rioting and looting. Buildings are being burned. Small businesses are closing forever. Historic statues are being pulled down. There is live gun fire that has resulted in innocents being killed. Police departments are being defunded.
Hollywood stars are stoking the flames. Billionaires are funding and equipping these “peaceful protestors.” Some of our national politicians are talking of the need to “totally transform” the country. They claim that “America was never great.” I fail to see patriotism in their actions.
I have been privileged to live a long life. A long life full of personal experiences provides perspective about many things. I wish my perspective concerning our patriotism was more hopeful. The flag of our country still waves in the breeze outside our home. Sometimes I feel like it is waving goodbye.