Friday, July 3, 2009

Independence Day...the real costs...

While we're all enjoying the 4th, I want to get something off my chest about Americans today. Sure, there are plenty of folks who do think of our fallen, and for those folks, I'm thankful.

But there is a mass ignorance among a larger number of exactly what the Fourth of July actually signifies.

Of the 56 who signed the original Declaration of Independence and participated in the rebellion to give America her first taste of independence from the British, some gave of their lives- at the hands of the British. Many gave of their wealth, and died pennyless..
Some of the worst cases of their unfortunate sacrifices are below.

William Stockton was captured and imprisoned by the British when they overran New Jersey. He was not released until several years later, with no medical treatment and generally kept in very poor condition. He lost all of his extensive library, writings, and all of his property during the British invasion. He died a pauper in Princeton at the age of 51, and it was most likely linked to his years in captivity.

Carter Braxton was born of a wealthy family in Newington Plantation, Virginia. He lost almost all of his wealth in the course of the revolution, in large part through attacks on his ships by the British forces.

Francis Lewis lost all of his property, on Long Island, New York, to the destruction of the Revolutionary war.

At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.

In early 1776, a decree was delivered from England -- offering a large reward for the capture of several of these leading figures of the revolution and their radical assemblies.

Add to this the many patriots since those days, to the great ones...the Greatest Generation-- who fought to avenge us after a sucker punch from Japan, and an insult to that injury by the bastards of 1940 Germany...

If you are, or have ever been , a fighting man... My thoughts are with you today.
You see, only you and I understand the distinction. No one else has had the burden that we've carried without complaint.

They've never felt compelled to offer their service to their country. They've never served in a capacity that might have demanded their lives in exchange for the completion of a necessary directive. This ain't 1940, and if you asked them to ration anything for a war effort in order to win, they'd cry like babies about how you're depriving them of THEIR fundamental rights!

I salute you, soldier. Wherever you are today. Whether you're retired, having done your part, and enjoying a well-deserved rest. Whether you're still on a tour...because I support you and your mission. Whether you gave the last full measure...and you're looking down on the rest of us.

Thank you for your service. Without it, we'd be just another failed government experiment..

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