God Bless America
A Commentary by J. D. Longstreet
Yes, Virginia, America WAS once FREE.
Those of us born before the Second World War have fond memories of the halcyon days of America. America stepped right from the Great Depression into a world war. In fact, the depression wasn't over at the time America entered the war. After the war, after the world was "made safe for democracy," there were days of peace and prosperity for Americans.
are about just a few days away from celebrating America's birthday, the
Fourth of July. Once again, we will be celebrating a fraud.
movement to enslave America and make her citizens serfs to the state
began on an April day in 1865 at a little place called Appomattox Court
House, Virginia. From that point on in our history Americans lost
freedom after freedom, liberty after liberty through a process known as incrementalism. (A little bit at a time) One hundred and forty-eight years later -- we are vassals of the state.
from politicians is nothing new for Americans. The real question is
whether we are lying to ourselves when we call this country the land of
the free." Those words were written by Jonathan Turley a
Shapiro professor of public interest law at George Washington
University. They are from an article written by Professor Turley and
published by the Washington Times on January 13th, 2012.
In the Article Professor Turley says: "Even
as we pass judgment on countries we consider unfree, Americans remain
confident that any definition of a free nation must include their own —
the land of free. Yet, the laws and practices of the land should shake
that confidence. In the decade since Sept. 11, 2001, this country has
comprehensively reduced civil liberties in the name of an expanded
security state. The most recent example of this was the National Defense
Authorization Act, signed Dec. 31, which allows for the indefinite
detention of citizens. At what point does the reduction of individual
rights in our country change how we define ourselves?" Source: http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2012-01-13/opinions/35440628_1_individual-rights-indefinite-detention-citizens
Professor Turley goes on to enumerate a few of the ways we Americans have lost so much of our liberty to the state such as: Assassination
of U.S. citizens, Indefinite detention, Arbitrary justice, Warrantless
searches, War crimes, Secret court, Immunity from judicial review,
Continual monitoring of citizens, and Extraordinary renditions. (Remember
-- this article was written over a year before the most recent
revelations of government overreach became public knowledge and
congressional hearings began. ... Editor)
Professor Turley points out: "An
authoritarian nation is defined not just by the use of authoritarian
powers, but by the ability to use them. If a president can take away
your freedom or your life on his own authority, all rights become little
more than a discretionary grant subject to executive will." SOURCE: http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2012-01-13/opinions/35440628_1_individual-rights-indefinite-detention-citizens/3
9/11, we have created the very government the framers feared: a
government with sweeping and largely unchecked powers resting on the
hope that they will be used wisely," says Professor Turley.
We recommend you read Professor Turley's article in its entirety. It is titled: "10 reasons the U.S. is no longer the land of the free." You will find it at: http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2012-01-13/opinions/35440628_1_individual-rights-indefinite-detention-citizens
I came across a video of the introduction of the great hymn "God Bless America" recently. It is a clip from an old movie and it features that great American, Kate Smith,
introducing and singing God Bless America for the very first time. It
brought a tear to my eyes as I watched and listened to a different time
in this country. I also spotted an actor who would later become what many feel was the last REAL President of the United States.
Here is the link to that video:
If you want to make your day, take a few minutes to watch and listen to that video. Fair warning: Get out the tissue and an extra handkerchief.
The patriotism portrayed in that clip was real. We didn't wear our patriotism on our sleeves nor on our lapels -- we LIVED it! It was alive in our hearts. We
didn't mind if a tear trickled down our cheeks as we sang the National
Anthem. It was the common honesty and integrity of men and women who
loved their country to their core.
That was MY America -- and it is the America I miss sorely.
© J. D. Longstreet