Thursday, April 8, 2010

Freedom Wrings II

As a general rule, I am not the least bit political. I have never really taken a position on any issue that I can remember. I tend to sit up on my mountain and shake my head at the arguments that I hear on both sides of the fence. I shake my head in disbelief at people who have no idea what they believe even though they will scream and yell at the others until they are hoarse. They go to war puffed with pride and are willing to die for issues that they clearly don't understand. How can I sit back and remain silent when people try to back up what they believe in with what amounts to gibberish? That is where this series began to germinate in my mind.

Larry is a man who never made it through high school. He is now nearly 60 years of age, though to me he looks much older than that. He bears several noticeable scars from his tour in Vietnam as an 18-year-old bent on showing the "commies" what the U.S. of A. was all about, namely, a gimpy right leg and a deformed eye lid. He lost a battle with some shrapnel from a U.S. Navy munitions barrage. Larry does not look upon his war wounds as a burden. He wears them like a crown. If you just listen to him, he will bring you back to that time for a personal journey. He swells with pride.

Larry is a nice enough man, though still more than a bit of an idealogue. His life since his return from overseas has been more than a bit rough and tumble, but Larry will tell you it was all worth it. He did what he had to do. However, if you listen to him bark out the pledge of allegiance at the V.F.W. with his fellow veterans each Tuesday night, you can clearly hear him say "... and to the republic of Richard Stands". In his mind, Mr. Stands represents some historic figure who fought with George Washington during the War of Independence.

Do you know what you are pledging allegiance to?

(Part 2 of 2)