Independence Day Reflections

A suggestion for this post came a few days ago from one of our Treepers. I think it is a wonderful idea, especially for today, and during these times.

I will just copy here a portion of her letter to me.

My friend, Jack is the father of four sons… and at the end of an email about his sadness over the dismantling of the statues of Washington and Lincoln, he mentioned that he and his boys had just been listening to “The Ballad of Davy Crockett,” and then he commented that “pretty soon, they’ll come for that, too.”

They very well could.

It made me think….what if they come for it all—all of our stories and poems and songs and books and movies, but each one of us could save something….what would it be? (Like Dolly Madison saved the portrait of Washington from the burning White House).

So, I wonder if Treepers would contribute to an “American cultural treasure chest” by suggesting the title of a poem, story, book, movie, song, or even of a photo or painting that was an important part of his or her own growing up. I’d be glad to collect all the suggestions together into something Jack and other parents and grandparents could share with their children and grandchildren as a way of connecting them to American history and culture—through the eyes of ordinary American people.

I was just reading …“Casey at the bat,” and I would definitely save that. It was the first poem that ever made me cry. And the book my mother read to me over and over again when I was very little, “The Little Engine that Could.” And Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” And all of the Rogers and Hammerstein musicals. And “Gone With the Wind.”

I wonder what bits of your own cultural history you would save?

If people are planning to be with friends and family this 4th of July weekend, the question might be a great conversation starter.

So, I pass on this idea, and a few thoughts.

If it is worth saving, it is worth sharing, teaching, discussing, promoting. Lots of us are feeling that we should do something to stop the insanity going on in this country right now, but not sure exactly where to start or what to do.

At 62, with no real talents except cooking and pissing people off left and right, I have now reached the Don’t Give a Red Hot Damn stage in my life, and I feel I do not have a lot to lose in the battles to come, which for me have mostly been fought on social media. Should things escalate I would imagine that there are more than a few cantankerous old people who are also at that stage.

But I do have one other talent and ability, perhaps the most important of my life. I can teach, and I love to, although I am not a professional and have no degree in teaching. I have tutored my own and other kids along the way, and now I have grandchildren.

Those grandchildren will learn things from me. It is time I gave more thought to what exactly I want to spend time teaching them. Of course I have always had books here for them, and my eight year old granddaughter, who loves to read, just asked me to get some longer books to keep here for her. I bought Heidi and Swiss Family Robinson a few months ago. I also keep children’s religious stories and books, and since she had her First Holy Communion recently,  a Bible for her, and some more advanced books dealing with her studies to prepare her for the Sacrament.

So, my point is this. Education and knowledge and influence are weapons and we have the ability to use them. I have a lot of time with my grandchildren, and today is the day to make a little more time for important things, and I don’t just mean books.

I’ve taught some of the kids some cooking basics, as well as started teaching them to bake breads. My husband is a genius at fixing any and everything, and a very good mechanic. He has always taken the time to answer the kids’ questions and let them help him with his projects, and fixing their own broken things.

What talents, skills, and knowledge can you pass on? I might even think about volunteering as a tutor in inner city schools. There are lots of places that people with good intent can pass on what we have to share.

Happy 4th of July Treepers!

Added note: Please read the post. There is a reason for it. It isn’t another post for political rage, sarcasm, anger, and insults. The Treeper who suggested this is going to compose a listing of all your ideas that might be shared. Do we have to make her sort through rants?

This entry was posted in Celebrations, Election 2020, History, Treehouse Campfire, Uncategorized, USA. Bookmark the permalink.

774 Responses to Independence Day Reflections

  1. hangtownbob says:

    The book “El dorado – Adventures in the Path of Empire By Bayard Taylor

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kris Xstitch says:

    Justin Morgan had a horse. Movie by Disney based on a book.

    Liked by 4 people

    • M. Ruby says:

      I had the book and the model horse as a kid!

      Liked by 1 person

      • jbt says:

        Me too. Really great book. I had palomino and a paint model horses with saddles that snapped underneath. 🙂

        For preservation of our heritage, my vote is Marty Robbins (especially ‘Ballad of the Alamo’ and, of course the classic ‘El Paso’ – uncut version).

        Liked by 4 people

        • Debra says:

          Wow. I had just read all these comments and had not seen a reference to Marty Robbins so was coming to the last page again (I read comments from last page to first) to give him props, and here I see your comment!

          What a great singing storyteller he was. My dad was a fan, my mom an even bigger fan, and I remember the 8-tracks she had — gunslinger ballads, I believe was the name of one (had a picture of a cowboy drawing his gun).

          Another singer whom I always thought captured ‘Americana’ — albeit in a slightly different era — was Glenn Campbell.

          My all-time favorite actor, Clint Eastwood, made the most memorable movies from my childhood.

          And I was a big mystery reader . . . loved the Nancy Drew series, though I learned to read on some series I can’t quite remember, but the characters were animals — wilderness dwellers — who had ‘human’ names and interacted with each other.

          Liked by 3 people

          • Debra says:

            Oh, and my siblings and I played with the plastic horses and buck wagon with the cowboy and Jane . . .

            Liked by 3 people

          • jbt says:

            “…the characters were animals — wilderness dwellers…”
            I wonder if it was ‘Adventures in the Big Thicket’ by Ken Gire. Great book for kids, with a lesson from Solomon at the end of each chapter. Ken Gire helped Donald Stratton tell his story of surviving the Pearl Harbor attack and continuing on to fight in the Pacific during WWII (‘All The Gallant Men’). Gire is a very VERY talented and versatile writer.
            Just finished SS Agent Clint Hill’s stories of serving Presidents Eisenhower through Ford (‘Five Presidents’), assisted by another talented writer called Lisa McCubbin. She also co-wrote ‘Mrs. Kennedy and Me’ about Agent Hill’s years as special agent to the first lady (very personal and heartwarming).
            All of these books are wonderful history lessons and are very fast reading.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Debra says:

              That does sound familiar, jbt. I tried to find them in the children’s section of a few libraries when my kids were little, but was unsuccessful.

              We grew up without a TV til I reached the age of 12, so I read voraciously as a youngster, and spent many hours outside ‘exploring’. We’d go to the drive-in as a family, so I saw all the westerns, but the one movie that has me comparing it to what we are living through right now is ‘The Sting’ . . .

              Liked by 3 people

      • We had the horses! Yes the Morgan horses! LOL!!!
        And just about every other animal that God created for man’s use.


  3. William the Comptroller says:

    From my childhood, All the “Our Gang/Lil’ Rascals”, Abbott & Costello/ Laurel & Hardy/ Marx Brothers movies/shows.
    “Victory at Sea” 26-episode documentary. (Narrated by Leonard Graves).
    All the “Movie-tones” featurettes.
    “A Millionaire for Christy”, “Dive Bomber”(1941).
    The Federalist Papers.
    “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”

    Liked by 3 people

  4. grlangworth says:

    I have an Independence Day reflection to share: If the NFL persists in broadcasting competing national anthems, it can forget about American audiences.

    Liked by 5 people

  5. Molly says:

    The book and the movie or TV show “Johnny Tremain”
    The book “Free River”
    The legend of Ocean-born Mary
    Ira Hayes
    Johnny Horton’s “Battle of New Orleans” song
    Laura Ingalls Wilder’s book series
    Lois Lenski book series
    Marguerite de Angeli book series
    Elvis Presley’s “Flaming Star” movie
    Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town”
    Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys
    The Mayflower Compact

    Liked by 3 people

    • goddessoftheclassroom says:

      I created a unit on “Johnny Tremain” for my 8th graders to go along with their history class study of the American Revolution! It’s interesting to me that it used to be taught to 6th graders and now 8th graders find it challenging. We need to teach what’s been called the American Canon starting in elementary schools–kids can read “young adult fiction” and “high-interest texts” on their own.

      Liked by 1 person

    • The Laura Ingalls Wilder and Lois Lenski books are great, loved them when I was a kid.

      And the now banned Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer books.

      I bought several copies of a lot of books that were becoming “unpopular” when I saw what was happening years ago as book banning became so popular.

      I wanted to have them around for my grand children and great grand children to read.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. 4EDouglas says:

    #1 My Father -good man, working Cowboy and part Cherokee.
    My hero.
    #2 My Grandma-Pop’s Mother. the Cherokee and a very refined southern lady.
    ## Grandfather Anderson Mom’s side.Descended fro Col.William Wallace Anderson who rode with George Washington.
    #4. My late Father in Law -Tank Driver 9th Army third tank across the Lubendorf bridge.(Remagen.)
    Liberation of Dachau.
    #5 My Mother in Law-descended from European and American Indian royalty.
    the real Princess Sophie (of the House of Hanover.) and the Real Pocahontas.
    $5 My wife who is fighting a stroke and is in a Nursing facility..BTW I never believed “Princess and
    the`Pea “until I knew My wife and Mother in law.. My wife is still there and hoped for rehab will happen this virus thing has thrown a wrench in her rehab. Pray for Us.
    Happy Fourth of July………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

    Liked by 8 people

  7. Johnny Dollar says:

    Firecrackers (especially “double enders”)

    The TV series “Victory at Sea.”

    Liked by 2 people

  8. MicD says:

    (sorry, poor ocr…)
    FIRST PRESIDENT. THE Father of our Countrj’ was ‘al born in Westmorland Co., Va., Feb. 22, 1732. His parents were Augustine and Mary (Ball) Washington. The family to which he belonged has not been satisfactorily traced in England. His great-grand- father, John Washington, em- igrated to Virginia about 1657, and became a prosperous planter. He had two sons, Lawrence and John. The former married Mildred Warner and had three children, John, Augustine and Mildred. Augus- tine, the father of George, first married Jane Butler, who bore him four children, two of whom, Lawrence and Augustine, reached maturity. Of six children by his second marriage, George was the eldest, the others being Betty, Samuel, John Augustine, Chades and Mildred. Augustine Washington, the father of George, died in 1743, leaving a large landed property. To his eldest son, Lawrence, he bequeathed an estate on the Patomac, afterwards known as Mount Vernon, and to George he left the parental residence. George received only such education as the neighborhood schools afforded, save for a short time after he left school, when he received private mstniclion in mathematics, His spellina v/as rather defective. 4> ^^ Remarkable stories are told of his great physical strength and development at an early age. He was an acknowledged leader among his companions, and was early noted for that nobleness of character, fair- ness and veracity which characterized his whole life. When George was i4yearsoldhehadadesire togoto sea, and a midshipman’s warrant was secured for him, but through the opposition of his mother the idea was abandoned. Two years later he was appointed surveyor to the immense estate of Lord Fairfax. In this business he spent three years in a rough frontier life, gaining experience which afterwards proved very essenrial to him. In 1751, though only 19 years of age, he was appointed adjutant with the rank of major in the Virginia militia, then being trained for active service against the French and Indians. Soon after this he sailed to the West Indies with his brother Lawrence, who went there to restore his health. They soon returned, and in the summer of 1752 Lawrence died, leaving a large fortune to an infant daughter who did not long survive him. On her demise tlie estate of Mount Vernon was given to George. Upon the arrival of Robert Dinwiddle, as Lieuten- ant-Governor of Virginia, in 1752, the mihtia was reorganized, and the province divided into four mili- tary districts, of which the northern was assigned to Washington as adjutant general. Shortly after this a very perilous mission was assigned him and ac- cepted, which others had refused. This was to pro- ceed to the French post near Lake Erie in North- western Pennsylvania. The distance to be traversed was between 500 and 600 miles. Winter was at hand, and the journey was to b« made without military escort, through a territory occupied by Indians. The GEORGE WASHINGTON. trip was a perilous one, and several limes he came near losing his life, yet he returned in safety and furnished a full and useful report of his expedition. A regiment of 300 men was raised in Virginia and put in com- mand of Col. Joshua Fry, and Major Washington was commissioned lieutenant-colonel. Active war was then begun against the French and Indians, in which Washington took a most important part. In the memorable event of July g, 1755, known as Brad- dock’s defeat, Washington was almost the only officer of distinction who escaped from the calamities of the day with life and honor. The other aids of Braddock were disabled early in the action, and Washington alone was left in that capacity on the field. In a letter to his brother he says : ” I had four bullets through my coat, and two horses shot under me, yet I escaped unhurt, though death was levelino my companions on every side.” An Indian sharpshooter said he was not born to be killed by a bullet, for he had taken direct aim at him seventeen times, and failed to hit him. After having been five years in the military service, and vainly sought promotion in the royal army, he look advantage of the fall of Fort Duquesne and the expulsion of the French from the valley of the Ohio, 10 resign his commission. Soon after he entered the Legislature, where, although not a leader, he took an active and imjjortant part. January 17, 1759, he married Mrs. Martha (Dandridge) Custis, the wealthy widow of John Parke Custis. When the British Parliament had closed the port ‘if Boston, the cry went up throughout the provinces that “The cause of Boston is the cause of us all.” It was then, at the suggestion of Virginia, that a Con- gress of all the colonies was called to meet at Phila- delphia,Sept. 5, 1774, to secure their common liberties, peaceably if ixjssible. To this Congress Col. Wash- ington was sent as a delegate. On May 10, 1775, the Congress re-assembled, when the hostile intentions of England were plainly apparent. The battles of Con- cord and Lexington had been fought. Among the first acts of this Congress was the election of a com- mander-in-chief of the colonial forces. This high and responsible office was conferred upon Washington, who was still a member of the Congress. He accepted it on June 19, but upon the express condition that he receive no salary. He would keep an exact account of expenses and expect Congress 10 pay them and nothing more. It is not the object of this sketch to trace the military acts of Washington, to whom the fortunes and liberties of the people of this country were so long confided. The war was conducted by him under ever)’ possible disadvantage, and while his forces often met with reverses, yet he overcame every obstacle, and after seven years of heroic devotion and matchless skill lie gained liberty for the greatest nation of earth. On Dec. 2-^, 1783, Washington, in a parting address of surpassing beautv, resigned his A* ^ ‘- commission as commander-in-chief of the army to to the Continental Congress sitting at Annapolis. He retired immediately to Mount Vernon and resumed his occupation as a farmer and planter, shunning all conneclion with public liie. In February, 1789, Washington was unanimously elected President. In his presidential career he was subject to the peculiar trials incidental to a new government ; trials from lack of confidence on the part of other governments; trials from want of harmony between the different sections of our own country; trials from the impoverished condition of the country, owing to the war and want of credit; trials from the beginnings of party strife. He was no partisan. His clear judgment could discern the golden mean; and while perhaps this alone kept our government from sinking at the very outset, it left him exposed to attacks from both sides, which were often bitter and very annoying. At the expiration of his first term he was unani- mously re-elected. At the end of this term manv were anxious that he be re-elected, but he absolutely refused a third nominaiion. On the fourth of March, 1797, at the expiraton of his second term as Presi- dent, he returned to his home, hojiing to pass there his few remaining yeais free from the annoyances of public life. Later in the year, however, his repose seemed likely to be interrupted by war with France. At the prospect of such a war he was again urged to take command of the armies. He chose his sub- ordinate offlcers and left to them the charge of mat- ters in the field, which he superintended from his home. In accepting the command he made the reservation that he was not to be in the field until it was necessary. In the midst of these i:>reparations his life was suddenly cut off. December i 2, he took a severe cold from a ride in the rain, which, settling in liis throat, produced inflammation, and terminated fatally on the night of the fourteenth. On the eigh- teenth his body was borne wi’h military honors to its final resting place, and interred in the family vault at Mount Vernon. Of the character of Washington it is impossible to speak but in terms of the highest respect and ad- miration. The more we see of the operations of our government, and the more deeply we feel the difiiculty of uniting all opinions in a common interest, the more highly we must estimate the force of his talent and character, which have been able to challenge the reverence of all parties, and principles, and na- tions, and to win a fame as extended as the limits of the glolie, and which we cannot but believe will be as lasting as the existence of man. The person of Washington was unusally tan, erect and well proportioned. His muscular strength was great. His features were of a beautiful symmetry. He commanded respect without any appearance of haughtiness,and ever serious without being dull.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. California Joe says:

    I remember sitting on the edge of the opened convertible sofa in the living room of our one bedroom apartment in Brooklyn on a Saturday morning with my Dad. I was 7 years old and we watched Gunga Din together. He told me about how brave the Black Watch and the Bengal Lancers were. Of course, they would be all racist today. By the way, there were five of us living in that one bedroom Brooklyn apartment and my parents slept in the living room on the sofa bed they opened each night. My brothers and I had the bedroom and it was the size of a walk in closet. No air conditioning in the summer and the elevated subway roared by a hundred feet from the window. We were poor but we had everything!

    Liked by 9 people

    • Kenji says:

      You just reminded me of gathering at a friends house, every Saturday afternoon, when I was 5yo in 1960 … watching Johnny Weissmuller TARZAN movies. In our brand new suburban house on the outskirts of Sacramento in Citrus Heights. Nothing but rolling fields of CA poppies and lupine stretching beyond our house. Now Citrus Heights is in the middle of a not-so-good section of suburban sprawl – grim. You can never go home. We would go down to the creek and pretend to be Tarzan … practicing his call and hopping from branch to branch of massive oak trees (not quite the jungle … but it worked). *Gasp* can you even imagine a parent today, letting their 5yo kid go down to the creek and play in trees today!? OMG! They might skin their knee and get it infected! Best arrange a play date at Gymboree … right? What a sad loss of our healthy lifestyles.

      Liked by 4 people

  10. Johnny Dollar says:

    The presidents Air Force 1 flyover of Mount Rushmore with an impressive musical background that was so right at so many levels.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. M. Ruby says:

    To add to my earlier list: the works of Aaron Copeland, including Appalachian Spring and Fanfare for the Common Man.

    And I don’t know if there’s a more moving American immigrant story than that of Medal of Honor recipient Tibor Rubin:

    Liked by 5 people

    • stripmallgrackle says:

      Total high five there.

      He captured the ‘sound’ of American history like no composer before or since. With his reflections on “Simple Gifts” in “Appalachian Spring” his knowledge of US history shows us that he wasn’t just making pot shots. In “Fanfare for the Common Man” he recognized the harmonic simplicity of America’s musical heritage in the mid 20th Century, it’s authenticity, and the spirit of individuality it conveyed. This was his True North musically, despite his fellow traveler leanings.

      “Rodeo”, probably the only truly American ballet, was not Copeland’s idea. When a choreographer first pitched a cowboy ballet to him, Copeland, who was gay, took the suggestion as an insult, and told her to, “go to Hell.” The gay cowboy inference was unintended, but years later somebody must have given the twist some thought, and we got “Brokeback Mountain” instead of great music. Intentionally trying to destroy cultural icons in the name of entertainment, while brainwashing and demoralizing your audience, just doesn’t hold up against true creativity.

      Liked by 3 people

  12. tapnkc says:

    One memory that I have growing up is the pride we had in our county. This was taught to us throughout my school years..and ended when I entered college in the 70s. I still know by heart the poem that I had to recite at a 4th grade school program. It is by Sir Walter Scott. It brings tears to my eyes now and did then (although as a 4th grader I couldn’t imagine anyone not loving their country). Patriotism is a virtue. We must instill this in our children and grandchildren

    Breathes there the man, with soul so dead,
    Who never to himself hath said,
    This is my own, my native land!
    Whose heart hath ne’er within him burn’d,
    As home his footsteps he hath turn’d,
    From wandering on a foreign strand!
    If such there breathe, go, mark him well;
    For him no Minstrel raptures swell;
    High though his titles, proud his name,
    Boundless his wealth as wish can claim;
    Despite those titles, power, and pelf,
    The wretch, concentred all in self,
    Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
    And, doubly dying, shall go down
    To the vile dust, from whence he sprung,
    Unwept, unhonour’d, and unsung.

    Sorry if posted twice I am new at this…

    Liked by 7 people

  13. vikingmom says:

    “We were poor but we had everything!”

    As opposed to far too many young people today who have every material thing known to man but have no guidance, no foundation, and no ability to think for themselves!

    Liked by 9 people

  14. Mark W says:

    President Trump’s “Salute To America” — Starts At 6:00pm EST — Patriots Marching In D.C. Now

    Liked by 3 people

  15. montanadi says:

    I’d save my favorite march, John Phillip Sousa’s “The Stars and Stripes Forever”!

    Liked by 5 people

  16. Andy Smith says:

    My favorite cultural treasure is the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. My 2nd grade teacher read them out loud in class and they taught me independence and a love of nature. To me, they define what American culture should be about.

    Liked by 5 people

    • vikingmom says:

      Andy – If you have never read “Little House in the Ozarks” I would recommend that you get that. It is a series of columns that Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote when she was probably in her 40s and 50s…so much practical wisdom and really great insight into the issues that were facing the world and the country one hundred years ago. It is amazing to realize how much, and how little, has changed!

      Liked by 2 people

  17. Kenji says:

    Here’s my black lives matter list. Note that it does NOT intentionally include any career, or habitual criminal. Any reference to a criminal black life is purely accidental.

    – Every Black Blues artist who ever picked up a guitar or harmonica and sang about life. My ‘white’ rock and roll soul thanks you all, and I have been diving into the original works like a young Mick Jagger, with every passing year.
    – Every Black Jazz musician who just went with it … let their feelings shape the notes … in the most complex, engaging, free-form, ways ever
    – Every Black Motown Artist who sang of heartache, trouble, and the glory of of their boyfriend. And a special mention of songs like The Supremes ‘Love Child’ which spoke of morality, truth, and *gasp* abstinence. And the Temptations “Ball of confusion” … aptly describing the nation today … and the band played on …

    And my “blackish” list …

    – Steely Dan’s entire catalog which always featured the best of black musicians and whom drew inspiration from the greatest black jazz, blues, and soul.
    – The Swampers … the white studio musicians of Muscle Shoals who gave so many black performers including the great Otis Redding their ‘black’ sound. Ha! Who knew?
    – Tony Joe White … what? You didn’t know he was white? I just bought two audiophile pressings of Tony Joe’s catalog. He’s much more than just “Polk Salad Annie” … what a voice! What Swampy Blues!

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Jon Brown says:

    We shouldn’t have to save anything from destruction by anarchist if we don’t let them. Where’s the American fight in us? We can’t just let them take it away without us standing in the way.There better not be anybody coming to my house or town, there will be lead flying. Be prepared.


  19. buckeyejames says:

    I love the Treehouse and I love this topic! Here’s a unique version of our national anthem courtesy of Fender Guitars. They manufacture in several countries but still produce many instruments in California. God Bless America and our great President Donald J. Trump!

    Liked by 2 people

  20. czarowniczy says:

    And on clarifying the 2nd Amendment, something liberal judges have problems with:

    “The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…. Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.”
    Thomas Jefferson

    “The Constitution of most of our states (and of the United States) assert that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed.”
    Thomas Jefferson

    “To disarm the people…[i]s the most effectual way to enslave them.”
    George Mason

    “Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed, as they are in almost every country in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops.”
    Noah Webster

    “A militia when properly formed are in fact the people themselves…and include, according to the past and general usuage of the states, all men capable of bearing arms… “To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.”
    Richard Henry Lee

    “This may be considered as the true palladium of liberty…. The right of self defense is the first law of nature: in most governments it has been the study of rulers to confine this right within the narrowest limits possible. Wherever standing armies are kept up, and the right of the people to keep and bear arms is, under any color or pretext whatsoever, prohibited, liberty, if not already annihilated, is on the brink of destruction.”
    St. George Tucker

    “Arms discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property…Horrid mischief would ensue were the law-abiding deprived of the use of the.”
    Thomas Paine

    “When government takes away the citizen’s right to bear arms it becomes the citizen’s duty to take away the government’s right to govern.”
    George Washington

    “What country can preserve its liberties if its rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms.”
    Thomas Jefferson

    “The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.”
    Thomas Jefferson

    The quotes could go on and it points out how the Founders knew that were the people to get sloppy about government oversight and not appreciate what they were given in the Bill of Rights that they’d lose everything generations had fought for. The very idea of the people telling the government what rights it had instead of the common model of the government controlling what rights the people had goes against the very genetic foundation of professional politicians and the pols are heavily pushing to change that.

    Liked by 4 people

  21. ElTocaor says:

    “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 battle-field 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.”

    Abraham Lincoln
    November 19, 1863

    Liked by 7 people

  22. Glenn Gallup says:

    Obviously “Old Ironsides” but there’s a line in “The Great Gatsby” that makes the whole book worthwhile. “Americans will consent to be peasants but never serfs” Says it all.

    Liked by 3 people

    • goddessoftheclassroom says:

      OMG, you know “Old Ironsides”!!!!! I loved teaching my students that Holmes wrote it as a letter to the editor of a newspaper to protest the scrapping of the ship. It’s a great example of literary sarcasm, too!

      Liked by 1 person

  23. oowawa says:

    Starland Vocal Band’s a cappella version of Paul Simon’s “American Tune”:

    “We come on a ship they called The Mayflower,
    We come on a ship that sailed the moon.
    We come in the ages’ most uncertain hour
    And sing an American tune . . . “

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Doppler says:

    I would like us all to remember the statement by Patrick Henry, “Give me Liberty or give me death.” And Voltaire’s statement: “I may not agree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it”.

    And in remembering, I would like us all to consider the firing this week of UMass-Lowell Nursing School Dean Leslie Neil Boylan for the following June 2:

    “I am writing to express my concern and condemnation of the recent (and past) acts of violence against people of color,” she wrote. “Recent events recall a tragic history of racism and bias that continue to thrive in this country. I despair for our future as a nation if we do not stand up against violence against anyone. BLACK LIVES MATTER, but also, EVERYONE’S LIFE MATTERS. No one should have to live in fear that they will be targeted for how they look or what they believe.”

    She reportedly was terminated for cause but without a chance to hear the accusations against her or to defend herself.

    I think she and anonymous faculty members John and Jane Does 1 through 100 should consider suing UMass-Lowell AND the Black Lives Matter organization (BLM) plus co-conspirators 1 through 10, for conspiring to suppress free speech and to harm her economically by getting her fired, and threatening the livelihood of all other faculty members by enforcing Marxist thought control techniques via
    1. this poisonous proposition that only racists say things like “everyone’s life matters,” a statement that is nearly synonymous to “all men are created equal,” and, in any event is protected free speech.
    2. deliberately conflating the fundamental truism that Black lives matter with the name of a Marxist organization and seeking to require innocent citizens to kneel before or otherwise submit themselves to control by Marxist thought police.
    3. fraudulently misrepresenting the death of Trayvon Martin as a hate crime instead of self-defense, complete with a fake witness, suborned perjury, and nationally organized publicity campaign in order to form BLM and identify it and its hidden political objectives with acts of injustice against African Americans, as detailed in the Trayvon Hoax, by Joel Gilbert.
    4. fraudulently diverting money contributed to BLM to support activities, candidates and campaigns of the Democratic Party and possibly other Marxist schemes.
    5. using the vestiges of America’s historic oppression and discrimination against African-Americans as an excuse to ignite racial warfare and thus subvert and destroy America, in order to generate chaos intended to allow radical Marxist takeover.

    If such a lawsuit could survive motions to dismiss by BLM, already in trouble and subject to discovery in George Zimmerman’s lawsuit for defamation and deprivation of rights under color of law, the discovery opportunities would be mighty fine, indeed. Put all those Marxist operatives under oath, take their depositions and expose all their fraud, subversion, and treason. Or at least get the satisfaction of having them all plead the Fifth, thus taking advantage of one of the very liberties they would destroy. Whereupon, the University that fired her would no doubt settle and even, perhaps, rehire her.

    There are others who’ve lost their jobs and been smeared as racists for similar statements, and they should all have cases against their employers and BLM and its co-conspirators, as well.

    Remembering our heritage is essential. Living it, standing up for it, when it is under attack, is also essential.

    Liked by 2 people

    • huecowacko says:

      That’s the spirit; otherwise, this thread is a complete downer, sounds like people who are/have giving/given up. Take a deep breath and read Mike Flynn’s article in The Western Journal of 06/29/20.


  25. AceODale says:

    I’m really late to this party.

    Thanks to the current cultural climate, all the dystopians would be on my list; from Time Machine to Brave New World. Especially Farenheit 451.

    At the conclusion of this Bradbury classic, the protagonist escapes the city and meets up with a group of refugees, also exiled for thought crimes. The group commits to memorizing portions of banned books to preserve them for posterity.

    Now, a totally unrelated work that I personally would hate to see forgotten is The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster. If you haven’t read it delightfully reinforces the need for independent thought.

    Happy Independence Day and may God Bless the US of A.

    Liked by 2 people

  26. One fortheroad says:

    My Dad was born in 1923 in Lima Ohio.On his 20th birthday Sep ’43 off he went to Ireland to prepare for Dday invasion 1944 June. After surviving life in aSherman tank with 6th Cavalry from Normandy to Gemany he was able to return to Ohio in Oct 1945. He told me he thought winters were bad in Lima but they were nothing compared to Europe. He ended upin in Southern California in 1946 driving a car for a friend out there who was going to UCLA or USC. Dad met mom in 1953 who moved from Grand Juunctio,CO.Six kids later we would always go to Big Bear Lake and Lake Arrowhead for the best summer vacations a kid could have. I saw my first gory movie there,Bonnie and Clyde.Talk about a hail of bullets! Anyways I asked Dad why don’t we go camping next year up here. He looked at me and said,” I have had enough camping in my lifetime”. Of course I didn’t get it but I did as I got older. I have not forgotten what my dad fought and the ideology that he told me that some hold.His fight is my fight for my children and grandchildren

    Liked by 5 people

  27. Karmy says:

    My father and I shared a love of old movies from the 30’s and 40’s. Those movies have nothing in common with the Hollywood of today but they were part of my youth and I have fond memories from them and still watch them if I can. They provide laughter and tears and I hope they are not destroyed or censored. All John Wayne movies, the Bridge on the River Kwai, The Best Years of Our Lives, Gone With the Wind, Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly movies, all the great musicals from Busby Berkeley, Penny Serenade, The Great Escape, Stalag 17, The Guns of Navarone, Casablanca, The African Queen, Dirty Dozen, The Longest Day. This is my short list but you get my drift. Patriotic and unabashedly American.

    Liked by 3 people

  28. Alexander Rawls says:

    Team America, World Police


  29. Alexander Rawls says:

    Team America, World Police


  30. Anon says:

    I have loved this whole thread today and am very motivated to get reading some of the suggestions here. How would I reference it at a later date when the thread is no longer visible?

    Liked by 2 people

  31. Karmy says:

    I read this essay a while ago and saved it and I think it is appropriate to share it here. Well worth the read.

    Milan Kundera Warned Us About Historical Amnesia. Now It’s Happening Again

    “The internet has become a tool of forgetting, not remembrance and the greatest area of amnesia is the subject that Milan Kundera spent his entire life trying to preserve, namely the horrors of communism.”


  32. Joe S. Euculano says:

    I would like to nominate the Pledge of Allegiance by comedian Red Skelton {1969}

    Liked by 4 people

  33. Me says:

    Working by Studs Terkel


  34. Rikster says:

    Sorry if someone already posted this, but you can never get too much Red. As a child I would watch this show every week with my parents and loved every minute of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Patchman2076 says:

    “Green eggs and ham” by Dr.Seuss
    One if my all time favorites. I’ll be reading all his silly stuff to my grandchildren once they get a little older.

    Liked by 2 people

  36. Burma Shave says:

    Book: _Conscience of a Conservative_ by Barry Goldwater

    There are other great works from conservative thinkers; however, I put this at the top because I was raised in a family of liberals and would likely have become one myself were it not for a my best friend who put this book in my hands sometime around 1978.

    Movie: “The Searchers”

    Military History: _Colder than Hell_ by Joseph R. Owen. Also: _Breakout_ by Martin Russ

    Both tell the story of the Chosin Reservoir Campaign during the Korean war. For those inspired by story of the Battle of Bastogne, you should consider reading what the Marines accomplished against unbelievable odds and conditions at the Chosin Reservoir during the Korean War. I am in no way star struck. I could not care less if I ever met a celebrity; however, I will always cherish the day I met Mr. Owen.

    Photos: Personal photograph of my neighbor, now passed, who served as an armorer in Third Army under Gen. George Patton. The photo shows my neighbor demonstrating some of his work (improvements to bazooka sites) to Gen. Patton himself who toured my neighbor’s unit on an inspection call. I could say so much about my neighbor, but I’ll leave it at this: he always joked that he got his corporal stripes because he didn’t screw up in front of the general. It should come as no surprise that I grew up across the street from this neighbor but didn’t even find out he served in WW II until 40 years later.

    Song: “Life in the USA” by 80’s garage band 20/20

    Poem: “Tommy” by Rudyard Kipling


    I went into a public-‘ouse to get a pint o’ beer,
    The publican ‘e up an’ sez, “We serve no red-coats here.”
    The girls be’ind the bar they laughed an’ giggled fit to die,
    I outs into the street again an’ to myself sez I:
    O it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, go away”;
    But it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins”, when the band begins to play,
    The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
    O it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins”, when the band begins to play.

    I went into a theatre as sober as could be,
    They gave a drunk civilian room, but ‘adn’t none for me;
    They sent me to the gallery or round the music-‘alls,
    But when it comes to fightin’, Lord! they’ll shove me in the stalls!
    For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, wait outside”;
    But it’s “Special train for Atkins” when the trooper’s on the tide,
    The troopship’s on the tide, my boys, the troopship’s on the tide,
    O it’s “Special train for Atkins” when the trooper’s on the tide.

    Yes, makin’ mock o’ uniforms that guard you while you sleep
    Is cheaper than them uniforms, an’ they’re starvation cheap;
    An’ hustlin’ drunken soldiers when they’re goin’ large a bit
    Is five times better business than paradin’ in full kit.
    Then it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, ‘ow’s yer soul?”
    But it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll,
    The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
    O it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll.

    We aren’t no thin red ‘eroes, nor we aren’t no blackguards too,
    But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
    An’ if sometimes our conduck isn’t all your fancy paints,
    Why, single men in barricks don’t grow into plaster saints;
    While it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, fall be’ind”,
    But it’s “Please to walk in front, sir”, when there’s trouble in the wind,
    There’s trouble in the wind, my boys, there’s trouble in the wind,
    O it’s “Please to walk in front, sir”, when there’s trouble in the wind.

    You talk o’ better food for us, an’ schools, an’ fires, an’ all:
    We’ll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
    Don’t mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
    The Widow’s Uniform is not the soldier-man’s disgrace.
    For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Chuck him out, the brute!”
    But it’s “Saviour of ‘is country” when the guns begin to shoot;
    An’ it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ anything you please;
    An’ Tommy ain’t a bloomin’ fool — you bet that Tommy sees!

    Liked by 2 people

  37. Brutalus says:

    Freedom and Red Devil firework stands…Bottle rockets, piccolo petes, M80s, and those little pink firecrackers…the smell of a BBQ…potato salad…Budweiser out of a keg… Vin Scully on the radio…the Grand Finale at the local park

    Liked by 1 person

    • jimrockfish says:

      Brutalus- I grew up in Southern California (Azusa) in the 60s and 70s. The 4th was my favorite holiday because of the fireworks. I was obsessed with them and the firework stands that would start popping up a couple weeks before the fourth. Not tents like nowadays. Maybe they still use the wood ones out there, I don’t know. Such a great memory of my childhood.

      My buddy and I would collect the old used fireworks and make our own firework stand in the backyard to play.

      Your post reminded me. Freedom and Red Devil. And Vinny on a transistor radio on my pillow at night. My heart is moved thinking of this. Thanks for posting and reminding me!


  38. Deplore Able says:

    Be sure to read the last stanza!

    Paul Revere’s Ride
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow – 1807-1882

    Listen, my children, and you shall hear
    Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,
    On the eighteenth of April, in Seventy-Five:
    Hardly a man is now alive
    Who remembers that famous day and year.

    He said to his friend, “If the British march
    By land or sea from the town to-night,
    Hang a lantern aloft in the belfry-arch
    Of the North-Church-tower, as a signal-light,—
    One if by land, and two if by sea;
    And I on the opposite shore will be,
    Ready to ride and spread the alarm
    Through every Middlesex village and farm,
    For the country-folk to be up and to arm.”

    Then he said “Good night!” and with muffled oar
    Silently rowed to the Charlestown shore,
    Just as the moon rose over the bay,
    Where swinging wide at her moorings lay
    The Somerset, British man-of-war:
    A phantom ship, with each mast and spar
    Across the moon, like a prison-bar,
    And a huge black hulk, that was magnified
    By its own reflection in the tide.

    Meanwhile, his friend, through alley and street
    Wanders and watches with eager ears,
    Till in the silence around him he hears
    The muster of men at the barrack door,
    The sound of arms, and the tramp of feet,
    And the measured tread of the grenadiers
    Marching down to their boats on the shore.

    Then he climbed to the tower of the church,
    Up the wooden stairs, with stealthy tread,
    To the belfry-chamber overhead,
    And startled the pigeons from their perch
    On the sombre rafters, that round him made
    Masses and moving shapes of shade,—
    By the trembling ladder, steep and tall,
    To the highest window in the wall,
    Where he paused to listen and look down
    A moment on the roofs of the town,
    And the moonlight flowing over all.

    Beneath, in the churchyard, lay the dead,
    In their night-encampment on the hill,
    Wrapped in silence so deep and still
    That he could hear, like a sentinel’s tread,
    The watchful night-wind, as it went
    Creeping along from tent to tent,
    And seeming to whisper, “All is well!”
    A moment only he feels the spell
    Of the place and the hour, and the secret dread
    Of the lonely belfry and the dead;
    For suddenly all his thoughts are bent
    On a shadowy something far away,
    Where the river widens to meet the bay,—
    A line of black, that bends and floats
    On the rising tide, like a bridge of boats.

    Meanwhile, impatient to mount and ride,
    Booted and spurred, with a heavy stride,
    On the opposite shore walked Paul Revere.
    Now he patted his horse’s side,
    Now gazed on the landscape far and near,
    Then impetuous stamped the earth,
    And turned and tightened his saddle-girth;
    But mostly he watched with eager search
    The belfry-tower of the old North Church,
    As it rose above the graves on the hill,
    Lonely and spectral and sombre and still.
    And lo! as he looks, on the belfry’s height,
    A glimmer, and then a gleam of light!
    He springs to the saddle, the bridle he turns,
    But lingers and gazes, till full on his sight
    A second lamp in the belfry burns!

    A hurry of hoofs in a village-street,
    A shape in the moonlight, a bulk in the dark,
    And beneath from the pebbles, in passing, a spark
    Struck out by a steed that flies fearless and fleet:
    That was all! And yet, through the gloom and the light,
    The fate of a nation was riding that night;
    And the spark struck out by that steed, in his flight,
    Kindled the land into flame with its heat.

    He has left the village and mounted the steep,
    And beneath him, tranquil and broad and deep,
    Is the Mystic, meeting the ocean tides;
    And under the alders, that skirt its edge,
    Now soft on the sand, now loud on the ledge,
    Is heard the tramp of his steed as he rides.

    It was twelve by the village clock
    When he crossed the bridge into Medford town.
    He heard the crowing of the cock,
    And the barking of the farmer’s dog,
    And felt the damp of the river-fog,
    That rises when the sun goes down.

    It was one by the village clock,
    When he galloped into Lexington.
    He saw the gilded weathercock
    Swim in the moonlight as he passed,
    And the meeting-house windows, blank and bare,
    Gaze at him with a spectral glare,
    As if they already stood aghast
    At the bloody work they would look upon.

    It was two by the village clock,
    When be came to the bridge in Concord town.
    He heard the bleating of the flock,
    And the twitter of birds among the trees,
    And felt the breath of the morning breeze
    Blowing over the meadows brown.
    And one was safe and asleep in his bed
    Who at the bridge would be first to fall,
    Who that day would be lying dead,
    Pierced by a British musket-ball.

    You know the rest. In the books you have read,
    How the British Regulars fired and fled,—
    How the farmers gave them ball for ball,
    From behind each fence and farmyard-wall,
    Chasing the red-coats down the lane,
    Then crossing the fields to emerge again
    Under the trees at the turn of the road,
    And only pausing to fire and load.

    So through the night rode Paul Revere;
    And so through the night went his cry of alarm
    To every Middlesex village and farm,—
    A cry of defiance, and not of fear,
    A voice in the darkness, a knock at the door,
    And a word that shall echo forevermore!
    For, borne on the night-wind of the Past,
    Through all our history, to the last,
    In the hour of darkness and peril and need,
    The people will waken and listen to hear
    The hurrying hoof-beats of that steed,
    And the midnight message of Paul Revere.

    Liked by 4 people

  39. Every once in awhile I llsten to this; Ray Charles sings America the Beautiful at the World Series in 2001 after 9/11


  40. billrla says:

    “Hogan’s Heroes”
    “Band of Brothers”

    Liked by 3 people

    • stripmallgrackle says:

      I’ll be sure to look for 101st Airborne troops wearing those antifa colors next time I watch Band of Brothers. /sarc


  41. Back to Basics says:

    Ayn Rand’s novels The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged, the ominous warnings within which we see being played out in the news each and every day.

    Liked by 2 people

    • stripmallgrackle says:

      Have to believe both of those are on someone’s got-to-go list. Rand was Russian, after all. “How could she?” Post mortem cancel.


  42. Back to Basics says:

    Also, every Mel Brooks movie ever made. They are already on the block for being “disappeared”

    Liked by 3 people

  43. Old Dawg says:

    I recommend all of Ralph Moody’s books, but ESPECIALLY, “Little Britches”. It is the true story of a Ralph Moody’s growing up in Colorado at the turn of the 20th century. Full of moral lessons that are timeless and invaluable. Every child should read it!

    Liked by 2 people

  44. coastermomohio says:

    When I was in high school we were assigned a book called “Giants in the Earth”. It was really long and I waited till the last minute to read it. It was a story of Norwegian pioneers crossing the country and settling in the Dakotas. I could not put that book down. I read all 400 some pages in 2 days. I remember feeling such a connection with the characters. I didn’t realize at the time, but some of my ancestors were from Norway and settled in the area of South Dakota. They came after the pioneer days, but it was the same area.

    The other thing I would save is the poem by Robert Frost “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”. Haha, everyone knows I don’t like winter or snow. But I love that poem.

    I love this topic, by the way. In a few days my daughter, son-in-law and 2 beautiful grandchildren will be here. They escaped from Seattle. My husband says “no political talk!”, but I know things will come up anyway. I am going to ask them this question. If nothing else, it will make them think, as I had to.

    Liked by 3 people

  45. Beth Wilson says:

    I would preserve the memorial card distributed to the Americans who went to see Ronald Reagan lying in state after his death in June 2004, “A Final Tribute From a Grateful Nation”. The line to the Capitol Rotunda snaked for blocks the evening that I was handed a card by the Secret Service. My husband and I joined the crowd at about 7:00 p.m. and finally entered the building at about 3:00 a.m. However, the time went in a flash, for at ever turn in the line was another American recounting their memories of President Reagan and what it was like to share his vision of a shining city on a hill.

    Liked by 2 people

  46. gary says:

    ‘The Harbinger’ jonathan cahn.


  47. Proudpapa007 says:

    Beautiful suggestions (conversation starter with family/friends and to capture these stories/songs/legends for all time). For those looking for a collection of these things, in 1993 William Bennett (Reagan/HW Bush cabinet, talk radio host) edited and collected a treasury of moral stories in a book titled “The Book of Virtues”. In 1997 he added a companion of sorts titled “Our Sacred Honor: Words of Advice from the Founders in Stories, Letters, Poems, and Speeches”. These are two of my prized books in my family library.
    May God Bless these United States, and the homes of each Patriot and their family.


  48. gary says:

    ‘Coming out of the ice’ victor herman

    Liked by 1 person

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