Saturday, June 27, 2015

"No Longer Be a Doubt That All Men Are Created Free and Equal"

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
June 27, 2015

Believe it or not, there are still level headed folks in this country. So far it seems most of us agree that the Confederate Flag should not fly over any government building. Either we are the United States of America, under one flag, or we are the divided states.

We agree that as far as private citizens having or buying anything tied to the Confederate side of the Civil War should be their choice to have or not. As for the companies refusing to sell these items, they need to explain why they sell other things that are offensive to many.

When men and women step up to serve in the military, they come from all parts of this nation yet they come together willing to die for each other. If you read the newspapers lately, it seems too many Americans are not even interested in getting along with each other.

We keep hearing the slogan "Black lives matter" and they do however some folks behind that seem to think that they matter more than anyone else.
"I leave you, hoping that the lamp of liberty will burn in your bosoms until there shall no longer be a doubt that all men are created free and equal."

Consider the simple fact that we read about veterans being killed by police after calls for help to save them. We don't see any protests over any of these deaths.  Do we see #veteranslivesmatter being tweeted? Do we see any calls for accountability or do we see them being used by politicians trying to destroy the VA no matter how many generations of them have to suffer? We seem to agree that politicians desire to destroy that VA is why there has been so little done to get it right for their sake.

The groups tied to peaceful protests are being taken over by hotheads blaming all police officers for what a few do and never once acknowledging those few usually treat everyone badly. We seem to agree that bad cops need to go but most cops are good and willing to put their lives on the line for the rest of us.

We seem to agree that the war memorials all over the country being vandalized are criminal acts.

These memorials are part of our history, bought and paid for by other citizens and the lives sacrificed for a cause no matter if these criminals agree with the cause or not. The vandals can't understand they are not above the law so how can they understand the price these monuments were built on?

Memorial Day began because of the Civil War when Southern women decided to honor their own fallen as well as the graves of Union soldiers.

Memorial Day History
One of the first occurred in Columbus, Miss., April 25, 1866, when a group of women visited a cemetery to decorate the graves of Confederate soldiers who had fallen in battle at Shiloh. Nearby were the graves of Union soldiers, neglected because they were the enemy. Disturbed at the sight of the bare graves, the women placed some of their flowers on those graves, as well.
Official Birthplace Declared In 1966, Congress and President Lyndon Johnson declared Waterloo, N.Y., the “birthplace” of Memorial Day. There, a ceremony on May 5, 1866, honored local veterans who had fought in the Civil War. Businesses closed and residents flew flags at half-staff. Supporters of Waterloo’s claim say earlier observances in other places were either informal, not community-wide or one-time events.

By the end of the 19th century, Memorial Day ceremonies were being held on May 30 throughout the nation. State legislatures passed proclamations designating the day, and the Army and Navy adopted regulations for proper observance at their facilities.

It was not until after World War I, however, that the day was expanded to honor those who have died in all American wars. In 1971, Memorial Day was declared a national holiday by an act of Congress, though it is still often called Decoration Day. It was then also placed on the last Monday in May, as were some other federal holidays.

Some States Have Confederate Observances Many Southern states also have their own days for honoring the Confederate dead. Mississippi celebrates Confederate Memorial Day on the last Monday of April, Alabama on the fourth Monday of April, and Georgia on April 26. North and South Carolina observe it on May 10, Louisiana on June 3 and Tennessee calls that date Confederate Decoration Day. Texas celebrates Confederate Heroes Day January 19 and Virginia calls the last Monday in May Confederate Memorial Day.

History of Memorial Day (4 min) TV-PG
Take a look at the holiday marking the official beginning of summer and America's most solemn occasion.

Text of Gettysburg Address
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate, we can not consecrate, we can not hallow this ground.

The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
"Any nation that does not honor its heroes will not long endure."

We saw two different examples from the same tragedy. The murderer stated he almost didn't do it because the members of the Bible Study were too nice to him.
Charleston County Coroner Rae Wooten identified the nine shooting victims as follows: Cynthia Hurd, 54; Susie Jackson, 87; Ethel Lance, 70; Rev. DePayne Middleton-Doctor, 49; Hon. Rev. Clementa Pinckney, 41; Tywanza Sanders, 26; Rev. Daniel Simmons Sr., 74; Rev. Sharonda Singleton, 45; Myra Thompson, 59.

Eight of the victims died at the scene, and the ninth victim died at a hospital.

As we witnessed from the response from parishioners at Mother Emanuel AME Church love won and was not destroyed by hatred. They forgave the shooter.
Victims' Families Meet Dylann Roof: 'I Forgive You, And Have Mercy On Your Soul'

Others don't seem to be able to find their own power to overcome evil.

Monuments, remembrances of lives gone during worst times than these days are being defaced and destroyed. They are part of our history. A history that began before Twitter and Facebook. A history begun before the internet that attempts to share history at the same time others attempt to rewrite it.

We seem to agree that far too many folks in this country are historically illiterate because they are too busy watching reality TV shows instead of learning about the reality of how this nation was not only formed but how it has been defended for all these years. Too busy playing computer war games to pay attention to the men and women dying and being wounded fighting in real wars. Young men and women willing to die for those they are with no matter what the color of their skin is, no matter how they vote or if they vote at all, no matter where they come from when where they are going is all that matters.

Divisions among races are easy to acknowledge while hatred because of ethnicities seems too hard to pay attention to yet they are part of our history as well. There are many other issues that could have destroyed the fabric of this nation yet we managed to overcome them because good people were willing to say no and inspire others to do the same.

Contrary to what the media has been trying to use as news, the truth is not as simple as they wish it would be. After all the complexities of the experiences cannot be reduced to a headline.

There are more good people in this country than bad.

There are more acts of kindness and love than evil acts fueled by hate.

There are more people doing all they can to have a better life than those blaming others for what they fail to do for themselves.

Love won yesterday as the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act because far too many were suffering simply because they lacked the resources to seek medical care but others said it was wrong to see so many suffer for it. It won again when Gay people were given equal rights to marry those they loved legally while the rest of the protections for religious groups remain intact to acknowledge them or not based on what they believe.

Love won yesterday at the Memorial for those murdered during a Bible Study of love.
"The doors of the church are open," declared the Rev. Norvel Goff during prayers. "No evildoer, no demon in hell or on Earth can close the doors of God's church," he proclaimed.

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