Sunday, July 4, 2010

O Say Does Your Star-Spangled Banner Yet Wave?

From the Cleveland Plain Dealer - July 4, 2010

Its lyrics sound old-fashioned, yet "The Star-Spangled Banner" is riven by the emotions of that moment under fire - of resistance, of sacrifice, of the determination of a young country not to be yoked again to a European superpower and, above all, of victory.

It is redolent of all our wars already fought, yet to come or on-going today, in which young, brave, patriotic, committed Americans expose themselves to the ultimate sacrifce to preserve what is special and enduring aobut our nation.

So today as we mark the 234th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, let us recommit also to honoring America's sons and daughters who remain under fire far from home.

Let us contemplate what it means to sacrifce, together, for a cause. And the next time we have the chance to sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" let us do more than lip-sync words forged from the heart under hire: "O! Say does that star-spangled banner yet wave, O'er the lane of the free and the home of the brave?"

And as much as I believe in treating our troops with dignity and respect now and when they return home - I still pray for the day when no one will send their son or daughter off to fight in another country. THAT will truly be a day to celebrate. Maybe that day will never come here on earth or in our lifetimes. Maybe humans are not capable of truly coexisting, and PEACE is just a dream to IMAGINE, but I still have to believe in COEXIST.

Someday - let us read about war in history books - and not in the morning newpaper.


Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

Diane, thank you for this. I often struggle with feeling like I must not be patriotic, but I think that is just my internalization of someone else's very narrow definition of patriotism. Longing for peace and justice is patriotic too.

Rob-bear said...

Sorry, don't have a "star-spangled banner."

But my "maple leaf forever" proudly flies from the top of my Canadian flag pole.

Hope you have a wonderful Independence Day. (We just finished our version of your July fourth on July first — Canada Day.)

Yes, and reading about war in history books rather than newspapers is a wonderful image! I hope it happens.

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