Patriotism: A Whisper from the Past




One of the most magical moments I’ve ever experienced occurred in the Midwest five years ago.


I was attending a demonstration of farm equipment and old-fashioned skills such as weaving and spinning. This outdoor event appealed to grassroots, country people. Most wore comfortable Saturday clothes; farmers came in bib overalls.


A parade of old tractors wound across the grounds, prompting nostalgic looks and happy smiles on the faces of older folks. They remembered trickles of sweat dripping down their backs as they occupied identical tractor seats long ago.


The magical moment appeared at the beginning of the parade as the announcer called attention to the American flag. The crowd hushed and stood at attention while a man sang “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Then, the whole group, as one, pledged allegiance to the flag--something I haven’t seen done in a very long time.


During those hushed moments a solemn stillness came over the crowd. I felt heartened to see a Boy Scout salute the flag during the singing of the national anthem. Likewise, a veteran, now grown old, gave a military salute the entire time those around him sang. People stood with hands over hearts, the way we were taught in grade school. They were unashamed to be seen showing respect to Old Glory.


That sacred moment was a whisper from the past. It brought back memories of childhood days, growing up in a country where we felt safe, honored God, and knew the uniqueness of our nation. It was a place where common sense was common. We called a spade a spade, not a “culturally diverse instrument for whatever you wish as long as you don’t offend anybody with it.”


Ah, blessed sanity. For those brief moments I glimpsed the fact that despite those who scream for their rights, our country is composed of many sensible people who quietly live their lives while shaking their heads at the endless parade of the outlandish among us.


Long live country people: they keep our feet on the ground. May their tribe increase.


And thank you to our many veterans. That includes for me, a brother, two sons and a son-in-law.


Your turn. Any thoughts about veterans? Feel free to use the comments box below