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Kent

A couple of Independence Day messages

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Kent
Signers of Declaration of Independence were true patriots Saturday, July 4, 1998 By JAMES WITT, Special to the Daily News Naple Daily News At a time when Americans are manifesting feelings of fear and loathing of patriotic sentiments, it is exceedingly important on this Independence Day that we should pause and reflect upon our revolutionary heritage. I consider myself fortunate to have lived during a period when the Fourth of July meant more than simply a long weekend or a day off work. It was a day when the virtues of liberty were extolled by public officials; communities were flag-draped; military veterans were honored with grand parades; community bonding was effected through omnipresent picnics, and the day was concluded with an impelling fireworks display. These were times when moral relativism was not our credo, when we manifested a sense of common identity and real heroes, not politically correct mediocrities, served as focal points for inspiration. In a nation whose history abounds with heroes, the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence must be placed at the top of the list. Who were these patriots? With few exceptions, they were prosperous members of the colonial elite. A quarter of them were wealthy planters or farmers, four were physicians, eight were merchants, four were ministers and half had been trained in the law. Yet they signed the Declaration knowing that their property would be confiscated and, if captured, they could face execution. All paid a terrible price for their patriotism. Nearly a third had their estates destroyed. William Floyd, a signer for New York, fled with his family and his wife became ill and died. John Hart of New Jersey had to flee from the bedside of his dying wife as did his 13 children. His property was methodically destroyed. At the age of 66, Hart fled to the mountains and lived in caves and the forest for more than a year. Upon returning home he found that his wife had died and his children had vanished. He expired shortly afterwards. Three others died bankrupt. Among them was wealthy Pennsylvanian Robert Morris, who had helped finance the Revolution. After the war he spent several years in debtors' prison. At the Battle of Yorktown, the British Gen. Cornwallis was headquartered in the home of a signer, Thomas Nelson Jr. General Washington had graciously spared his home from destruction. Nelson, however, implored the general to fire on the house. The house was destroyed and Nelson, too, died bankrupt. Five signers were captured and given the choice of prison under harsh conditions or freedom and other rewards if they recanted their treason against the king. All chose prison. The signers' families often suffered more than those who had signed the revolutionary document. The wife of New York's Francis Lewis was captured by the British and spent three years in prison. Her health ruined, she died shortly after her release. Two sons of Abraham Clark of New Jersey were captured and imprisoned under horrid conditions. Unfortunately, many of the textbooks used in our schools today express no sense of the superbness of this moment in American history. For example, "These United States," a history text published by Prentice Hall in 1995, devotes only three brief paragraphs to the Declaration of Independence. The text of the document, however, is printed in the appendix. By contrast, two full pages are devoted to a historical portrait of the debauched life of Jack Keroriac - an alcoholic beatnik writer of the 1950s. The patriots of 1776 gave us a nation. Let us continue in their honor to work to perpetuate this nation forever with a sense of common identity and united in its belief in a democratic system. We owe it to our future generations. [A href='http://www.insidenaples.com/today/editorial/d284049a.htm']http://www.insidenaples.com/today/editorial/d284049a.htm[/a]

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Kent
From: ArmyLINK News Story Sent: Monday, July 02, 2001 2:32 PM To: ARMYLINKNEWS-L@DTIC.MIL Subject: Commentary: Why I Serve Text Version by Capt. Clemens S. Kruse (Army News Service, July 2, 2001) Commentary: Why I Serve Capt. Clemens S. Kruse I serve because a royal concept of mercantilism digressed into taxation without representation. I serve because a common farmer, a colonial militia officer, a decent, ordinary man faced with extraordinary circumstances risked his life and livelihood when he entered a basement chamber in Philadelphia in the fall of 1774 to join the Continental Congress and became the father of our country. I serve because a first lieutenant brought me coffee at 2 a.m. while I was on guard duty and asked me to talk through my concerns about accepting my nomination to a service academy. I serve because of the chills I felt during reveille as a Boy Scout at Lake Arrowhead, as a basic trainee at Fort Benning, and as a new cadet at West Point. I serve because of the chills I feel each day I have the opportunity to honor my nation's colors at retreat. I serve because of seven articles and 27 amendments that serve as a 225-year-old experiment in government that King George wrote off as a doomed system -- that is today emulated by every country introducing free trade. I serve because I know my leaders will never ask me to march into our legislative branch to establish new law, as Oliver Cromwell's example. I serve because my country's tremendous wealth of resources and creativity is balanced by philanthropic gestures at home and abroad. I serve to equally protect the idealisms of both The Honorable Tom Daschle and Rush Limbaugh; both Billy Graham and Larry Flint; both Bill Gates and John Doe; both Al Gore and Charlton Heston. I serve to strengthen George Orwell's statement "We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm." I serve because one million lawyers working today constantly question and strengthen the limits of our law -- when our law becomes unquestionable, I will have cause for concern. I serve because Khomeini, Qaddafi, Hitler, Noriega, Hussein, Aidid, and Milosevic are seldom satisfied without introducing their tyranny and imperialism. I serve because I want my children to describe their father's job as defending their freedom. I serve because the American public has high expectations of protection and sanctity. I serve because somebody has to, and I feel I can do it better than most. (Editor's note: Kruse, is a company commander at McDonald Army Community Hospital, Fort Eustis, Va.)

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dlcentral
It's so true,,a patriot serves his country not asking anything in return,other than freedom for his family and country, All others who do all the complaining about this country are NOT patriots,,and they ought to stop and think just WHO gave them that right to complain,,the good 'ol patriot! IMHO..Happy 4th America!,,

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SmilinSam
History is our nations sustenance, without it we wither and die as a nation and as a people in our own forgetfulness. Our nation was forged in the blood of war, but I put it to you that surviving war is not the true test of a nations strength, endurance and resolve, It is surviving the periods of lengthy peace and prosperity that are the true test. You see, complacency, apathy, fear, and forgetfulness are a greater slayer of freedom than the sword. Sam

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Guest
Amen, hallelujah, and praise the Lord. A very happy Fourth of July to all those at home and abroad!!

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Roy
Kent, thanks for a reminder of why our country is so great. Despite its flaws, or maybe because of them, the USA is the best place in the world to live. Its just unfortunate there are so many Americans who don't know how we got here and what they really have. Thanks again, Roy

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Guest
Thank You.Those words were a truely compelling reminder of what sacrafices we should remember on the 4th of July. I agree that the risk that our fore fathers took in establishing this great nation should be better recognized. I also salute all men and women who have sacraficed there possesions,ideals, and even lives to preserve our deepest liberities. For if it was not for those people we would not be living in this beautiful nation where we are free to live where we want, think what we want, and practice any religion we want...... But we should be reminded that this did not come with no cost. I get chills when I think of the blood that was shed for me to live like I do today.I am only Fourteen and as I grow older I will always remember what the people before me gave so they could live in tranquility. For only they know the true price of freedom.This is what I think of on every 4th of the July. Thank You. Happy 4th of July and God Bless Andy

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MPH
Andy, thankyou, its always encouraging to me to here there are young MEN in America today. After serving 3 years on our local school board when my sons were in high school I thought maybe my 2 and a few of thier buds were the only ones. MPH

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Guest
The previous messages are very encouraging to those of us who raise Hell when we hear of school departments who wish to abolish the daily Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag. As one of the Founding Fathers said, "The price of liberty is eternal vigilance." The One Worlders stress "human rights" which are derived from government. (As are "civil rights".) The USA is the ONLY nation whose citizens have "unalienable rights", derived from The Creator. Remember, a right not actively asserted is waived. Just one more reminder and I'll get off the soap box: Those of us who have served in the military have NEVER been realeased from the sworn oath we took at induction. JackP

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