Proud to be an American

On Monday, we will celebrate Memorial Day honoring the men and women who have died protecting our right to be Americans.

It breaks my heart that, somehow, it has become controversial to be proud of our Country….to be pro-America and all that She stands for. It breaks my heart that, somehow, being a proud American is being equated with being anti-immigrant. That couldn’t be farther from the truth.

Since the birth of our nation, immigrants have been a vital part of who we are as Americans. Our cities honor and reflect the flavor of different cultures and customs, and we’re proud of that. We enjoy that. But we have to ask ourselves these critical questions:

  1.  Are we AMERICANS that enjoy the diversity of different homelands?  OR
  2. Do we believe that we should be sovereign cultures that just happen to reside on American soil?

There is a tremendous distinction between those two philosophies, and the future of our Nation will be determined by what we fight for.

Our Founding Documents, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, protect the freedom that has called people to our shores for generations. And if it’s true that people all over the world have literally sacrificed everything to get to America, there must be something incredible precious about who we are and what we stand for. Let’s take a look at what we stand for…at the foundation on which we were built.

Our Constitution is inspired and there is genius in its simplicity and in the sacredness of its content.  The Preamble clearly states the goals for our Founding Document…

First and foremost, it articulates that the government is US…”We the People”. The power and privilege established in the Constitution, and the responsibility that entails, is granted to our citizens.

And WHY is power given to the people? For what purpose?

  1. To Form a Better Government than the tyranny we came from or see in other parts of the world.
  2. To Establish Justice. Now it doesn’t say “lay down the law”. The goal is to build the government of our nation on a foundation of fairness, equity and objectivity in how we deal with one another.
  3. To Ensure Domestic Tranquility. To have peace at home, in our own nation, for a people cannot forever survive a divided country.
  4. To Provide for the Common Defense. To make provisions to safeguard and protect our Country and its people.
  5. To Promote the General Welfare. To actively encourage and affect the health, happiness and prosperity of everyone in our nation
  6. To Secure the Blessing of Liberty to ourselves and our posterity: To make sure that we are able to enjoy these freedoms along with our children.

These goals are further supported by the Bill of Rights granting immense freedom to the people of America under the protection of law.

Under the BILL OF RIGHTS, you have a right to…

  1. Worship the way you want. Say what you want. Gather information. You can peacefully get together wherever and whenever you want. You can complain to the government, ask for assistance or communicate with the Government without being afraid. And the Press is can report what it wants.
  2. You have a right to your guns and to defend yourself and resist oppression.
  3. You don’t have to house the military in peacetime. (Granted, this is not a hot topic but a good idea, nonetheless)
  4. You are protected from unlawful search and seizure and arrest.
  5. You don’t have to incriminate yourself or be tried twice for the same offense ever. You have the right to due process of law, regardless of circumstance, and your property can’t be taken without being paid fairly for it.
  6. The Bill of Rights further lays out what “due process” looks like.
  7. Finally, under the 9th Amendments, it acknowledges that you are born with more rights than any constitution could ever list or specify.

PROTECTING THESE RIGHTS, WHICH YOU SO FULLY ENJOY, IS WHAT THE MEN AND WOMEN OF OUR MILITARY HAVE DIED FOR.

This Constitution, this Supreme Law of the Land, IS the beacon of hope and freedom that calls hungering people to our shores. It’s worth defending. It’s worth working for.  It’s worth protecting.  And it’s worth asking those that come here to honor.

And while the majority of us aren’t called to military service, we have the explicit duty to claim our allegiance to these great Ideals, for if we don’t claim and protect them, we can’t be a beacon of hope for anyone.

I am awed by the depth of personal respect that is framed within our guiding document.  Our Country’s foundation, on which we stand, live, breath and build our lives, deserves the same depth of respect.  Let us not contort, pollute or convolute what it truly means to be a proud American.  Let us make the conscious choice to not see ourselves as Republicans and Democrats violently divided… let us choose to be AMERICANS who are unified by the sacred freedoms we enjoy.  And let us work our differences out from that standpoint.

If the men and women in our military have died protecting those rights, let us honor their sacrifice and live in a manner that embodies all that is good and just and right about what it is to be an American.

Their sacrifice deserves nothing less.

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