Alexander's Column

The Most Noble of American Patriots

By Mark Alexander · Nov. 10, 2011

Veterans Day 2011: A Tale of Two Marches

“War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things; the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks nothing worth a war, is worse. A man who has nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance at being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.” –John Stuart Mill
Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis

Across our nation, there is a sharp division between two groups of Americans marching to very different drummers.

I am not referring to the current politics of disparity promoting class warfare between the 35 percent of statists (dependents who label themselves “99 Percenters”), and the other 65 percent who are hard-working and self-reliant American citizens. The former are busy fomenting socialist protests in urban centers across our nation while the latter are busy working and caring for their families and communities.

Rather, the division I note is made plain by the vivid contrast in character between two groups – those on the frontlines in defense of Liberty versus those who seek to subvert it.

On the right side of Liberty, we have American Patriots in uniform who, since the dawn of our great nation, have put their lives, fortunes and sacred honor on the line “to Support and Defend” the Liberty enshrined in our Constitution.

On the wrong side of history, we have Leftist cadres loyal to Barack Hussein Obama, who seek to supplant republican Liberty and its principle expression of free enterprise with socialist democracy. Although the so-called “99 Percenters” are marching to Obama’s beat, their protests are trivial compared to the endemic threat to Liberty posed by the rest of the Leftist hegemony in control of our central government.

Could the contrast be any starker?

The threat of Obama’s minions notwithstanding, I am greatly encouraged, especially on Veterans Day, by the fact that American Liberty is defended, first and foremost, by the current generation of Patriots within our Armed Services, and the plurality of citizens who support them. It is fitting that we would reverently honor those whom, for generations, have sought to defend Liberty.

Veterans Day began as Armistice Day, when on 11 November 1921, the remains of an unknown World War I American soldier were buried in Arlington National Cemetery, in recognition of WWI veterans and the official cessation of WWI hostilities “at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month” of 1918. President Warren Harding requested that “All … citizens … indulge in a period of silent thanks to God for these … valorous lives, and of supplication for His Divine mercy … on our beloved country.” Inscribed on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier are the words, “Here lies in honored glory an American soldier known but to God.”

In 1954, Congress was determined to additionally recognize the sacrifice of veterans before and since WWI, and those of future generations, and thereby proposed to recognize 11 November as Veterans Day. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, former Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in WWII, signed legislation establishing Veterans Day.

Insight into the sacrifice of our veterans and their families can be gained by noting that, since the American Revolution, tens of millions of Americans have served our nation with honor, and almost 1.2 million have died in defense of it. Another 1.4 million have been wounded, many gravely. The numbers, of course, offer no reckoning of the inestimable value of these Patriots' lives or the anguish borne by their families, but we do know that their sacrifices defended a most precious gift – the gift of Liberty that we cherish to this day.

On previous Veterans Days, I have had the privilege of writing about great American Patriots who have profoundly influenced my life, including Roger Helle (USMC) and Roger Ingvalson (USAF). I have also profiled outstanding members of the current generation of uniformed Patriots such as Lee Miller (USA).

I am a humble descendant of generations of Patriots. My father, and his father before him, were Naval Aviators in WWII and WWI respectively. Our family lineage records veterans back to the American Revolution.

These men have heeded the call to serve others before self, and have sacrificed accordingly. And now, my eldest son has received his acceptance letter from the United States Naval Academy and is awaiting Air Force notification.

This personal backdrop, which has stewarded my full appreciation for veterans and the day we set aside to honor them, is a driving force behind The Patriot Post’s mission of service to our nation and the military personnel who defend her.

Our mission is the antithesis of that pursued by the current commander in chief, as Obama demonstrated this week when his administration announced his rejection of a request to place a small prayer-adorned plaque adjacent to the World War II Memorial in Washington. This was not just any prayer, I might add, but President Franklin Roosevelt’s D-Day call to prayer on 6 June 1944, as 57,000 American and 75,000 British and Canadian troops made their way into bloody battle to establish five beachheads on the coast of Normandy.

Roosevelt proclaimed, “Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our Nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity. … Lead us to the saving of our country, and with our sister Nations into a world unity that will spell a sure peace – a peace invulnerable to the schemings of unworthy men. And a peace that will let all of men live in freedom, reaping the just rewards of their honest toil. Thy will be done, Almighty God. Amen.” (We invite you to read or listen to the full text of FDR’s prayer.)

The Department of Interior ruled that posting Roosevelt’s prayer would undermine the purpose of the memorial. According to DoI’s Bureau of Land Management Director, Robert Abbey, “Altering the memorial in this way … will necessarily dilute this elegant memorial’s central message and its ability to clearly convey that message to move, educate, and inspire its many visitors.” Abbey said the plaque would “intrude” on the memorial.

Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH), who sponsored legislation to approve the plaque, said, “It is unconscionable that the Obama administration would stand in the way of honoring our nation’s distinguished World War II veterans. President Roosevelt’s prayer gave solace, comfort and strength to our nation and our brave warriors as we fought against tyranny and oppression.”

Unfortunately, Obama and his administration have a sordid history of intentional omission when it comes to the notion that Liberty is “endowed by our Creator,” and not some potentate or government. This is the fundamental basis for our Constitution’s Rule of Law as opposed to the rule of men.

This revelation came in the same week that Obama chastised Congress for reaffirming the 1956 Act of Congress that made “In God We Trust” our national motto, while he was busy issuing an official statement “to Muslims worldwide” celebrating Hajj and Eid al-Adha. (Perhaps Obama should consult a veteran member of Congress, one willing to speak the truth about Islamo-fascism.)

Of course, you must recall that Obama was inculcated with the teachings of Jeremiah Wright, the disciple of hate who officiated at Obama’s wedding and baptized his children. “‘God Bless America’? No, no, no, g-d d— America!” Wright raged in one of his frequent anti-American rants. “G-d d— America for treating our citizens as less than human! G-d d— America!”

At no time in generations has the contrast between those who support Liberty, and those who want to tear it down, been so striking.

Despite this contrast, America stands proud and free because our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coastguardsmen have stood bravely in harm’s way – now and for generations. For their steadfast devotion to duty, honor and country, we, the American People, offer our humble gratitude and heartfelt thanks.

On this Veterans Day, and every day of the year, may God bless our men and women in uniform, those who have served before them, and their families. “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” (John 15:12-14)

As a final note, I received an email this morning similar to many we receive daily during our support campaigns. This message was from an aging and disabled Veteran: “Mr. Alexander, Just a note of thanks for all that your Patriot team does to promote Liberty. It does my heart good to know that there are those among the generations that follow mine, who are steadfast in their devotion to Liberty, and to sustaining it for the generations to come. Though I do what I can to promote The Patriot Post, please forgive my small donation. I would like to do more, but I am an old beat up Marine GySgt, and can barely make ends meet now. Semper Fi!” (Gunny, on this date, anniversary of the establishment of the Continental Marines in 1775, a special word of thanks to you, all our Naval Infantry brethren – Semper Fi indeed!)

Patriots, please, if you are active duty or reserve military, a student, or a citizen with limited income, allow us to provide The Patriot Post as a service to you.