Being the granddaughter of a man named George Washington Kreisher born on the 4th of July, as a child the celebration of the nationís birth was always special to my family.
I can still remember as a child watching my grandfather dancing and picking up his fiddle and singing this American Folk song:
ďIím a Yankee Doodle Dandy, A Yankee Doodle do or die, a real life nephew of my Uncle Sam born on the 4th of July. Yankee Doodle went to town, riding on a Pony, Stuck a feather in his cap, And. called it macaroni.Ē
The day we celebrate the birth of our nation July 4th ,1776 , we all feel more patriotic, Red, white and blue color the day and we hold special parades and picnics, and fireworks fill our skies throughout the country.
This year as we approach July 4th my heart is troubled with news of our government spooked by the strange militants in the Middle East and our sacrifice of thousands of lives and thousands of wounded warriors coming home from Iraq which is now failing as a government, ( A war that cost us billions.)
There is a scandal within The Department of Veteran Affairs, (VA) the federal agency responsible for serving veterans by providing health care, disability compensation and rehabilitation, burial in a national cemetery, and other benefits.
Whistleblowers have made claims of veterans dying from lack of services, and employees receiving bonuses for excellent and timely services to the sick and wounded. A true dichotomy.
On March 4, 1865, Abraham Lincoln concluded his second inaugural address:
ďWith malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the Nationís wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan ó to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and a lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.Ē
A part of that address adorns metal plaques on either side of the Vermont Avenue doors to VA Central Office in Washington, D.C. ďTo care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and has orphan,Ē became the motto of VA in May, 1959, when the plaques were first put up, according to https://www.facebook.com/notes/us-department-of-veterans-affairs/.
The Tri County Record has been publishing stories about Memorial Day, Flag Day, Veterans of the Wars and the American Legionsí service to community and vets.
So what say you? Do you have the courage to go on the record with your thoughts and concerns? Weigh in with the others talking about these issues.
I need your stories. I need you to stand up. I need to let the public know that your patriotism is more than picnics and fireworks.
Write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org send me your comments and I will publish them with your name and town, Letís Talk, Lets open the conversation.
Carol Quaintance is a correspondent for the Tri County Record. In addition to writing about local happenings and people, Carol writes a monthly On the Record column. Email Carol at email@example.com or the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit us on the web at www.berksontnews.com. Join our facebook page at www.facebook.com/TriCountyRecord.
Editorial Policy: Letters must be signed with a first and last name with a town of residence. Anonymous letters or letters signed with incomplete names will not be published. Personal attacks on individuals will not run. Elected officials and other public figures are considered not as individuals but as the institution they represent. Editor reserves right to cut words, sentences or paragraphs.