Tag Archives: THE PRICE FOR FREEDOM

NFL: No Flag Loyalty-Part Two: Serious Questions

Opening statement to those who think that a simple thing like just standing during the singing/playing of our Nation Anthem has nothing to do with honoring/respecting/recognizing the dedication and sacrifice of those who serve/who have served our Country:
“Yeah, it does.”

It began simply enough, as most things do, with my just wanting to reflect on things that had happened between the first and last parts of our series, “The Price for Freedom,” a period which spanned from June 23, 2017 until November 8th, 2017. So, as I thought about the events of the last months, the one thing that stood out, for me, was the “fuss” being generated over this “Stand for the Anthem” issue.

I am reminded of the book by Dr. David Jeremiah, entitled, “I Never Thought I’d See the Day!”
Well, guess what?
I never thought I’d see the day when there would be a “fuss” over standing for the National Anthem. Did you? But, even sadder than that … I never thought I’d see the day when, if you criticized someone for not standing … you … yes, you … would be criticized! I’ll say it:
I never thought I’d see the day when our President, the President of the United States, would make a strong statement that we should stand for our National Anthem … and, then, HE would be criticized for making that statement … I never thought I’d see the day …
Once again, as I wrote in Part One, “What message do you think that sent to the world?”

I can say this with all truth and sincerity: I know what it’s like to be ridiculed, or to be made fun of, or be criticized, for being something called a “Patriot.” This has nothing to do with a team who has that name. To be “called down” for acting like a “Patriot” is not something I am ashamed of. It is something I am proud of. I’m proud to be an American. I will stand for our Anthem. I’m proud of what our Country stands for. I will stand for our Anthem. I’m proud of what our Military has done, and is doing. I’ll stand to honor them. I’ll stand for our Anthem. I am honored to be the recipient of the freedoms which these brave men and women-under the banner of our Flag-have accomplished for me, and for us all. I’ll stand for our Anthem.

However … this does lead me to “question” those who don’t stand.
I can’t help it … I am human … and, I am a proud American:

If all this “isn’t a big deal,” then the following questions wouldn’t be a big deal either:
If they don’t stand for our Flag … then … whose flag do they … will they … stand for?

If it’s not “just about them,” then, why do they remove their helmets during the Anthem?
Do they know that “everyone is watching?”
Oh … I get it … if they don’t take their helmets off … how could their face get “camera time?”

Say … those are 2 pretty big questions:
If it’s not about just them, why do they remove their helmets?
If they don’t stand for our flag, whose flag do they stand for?

I have made it clear that I am, yes, a fan of the NFL (No Flag Loyalty).
Maybe not as big a fan as I was, but I’m still a fan.

But, and, maybe I’ll be criticized for writing this … but … as big a fan of sports that I am, as big a fan of the NFL (No Flag Loyalty) as I am … I am a bigger fan of the United States. I am a bigger fan of our Flag, and what it “stands” for.
I love the fact that I used the word “stands” there. Looking at it, the word, I am reminded that, yes, I love our Flag, and what it stands for. For the men and women who have, and still do, “stand” under it, and defend it. Maybe, most of all, I stand for those who have died … defending it. Who have died, fallen, “standing” for it, and what it “stands for.”
Yeah … I’ll stand.

Is that it?
Is that why I stand?
What does it say about me … that I stand?
What would this, then, say about those who refuse to stand?
Ok, allow me to speak as a fan: There are at least 4 teams that I believe have serious “locker room” issues. Because of this, these 4 teams will never win a Super Bowl. Will never win a Championship.

Every “movement” must have a leader. Did I just say that, not standing for our National Anthem, was a “movement?” Dr. Jeremiah … “I Never Thought I’d See the Day!”
Anyway, there is a particular player who is, generally, credited with starting this “movement.” And, the fact that he has, since he became “famous” for not standing during our National Anthem, been unable to get a job, has equally made “big news.” Seems no one, in the NFL (No Flag Loyalty), will hire him. Again, this has been news, and the subject of much debate. Let’s get back to this “serious locker room issues” idea. No one wants a player who would “divide” the locker room. Heck … this particular player divided the country! So, it’s “not looking any better for tomorrow” to have him “suit up” for your local team. There have even been reports of fans refusing to buy tickets if this particular player is signed. I don’t know … what does that say?

So, thinking about this one player, for a moment. I agree, 100%, that we have freedoms in this Country. Yes … freedoms we enjoy directly because of what that Flag, and those who defend it (even died defending it), stand for. Heck … there’s that word “stand” again. That must really be a “sore spot” for some folks … Anyway … I think I came up with this question while I was looking at the Time magazine cover with this particular player’s photo on it … you know, the one where he was kneeling during our National Anthem … After I thought, “I wonder if he would have made the cover in recognition of his football skills?” the next thought was this:

I had been debating this issue over whether this was about a glaring social issue, or just a personal opportunity for publicity. I thought about what I had always been taught, and, it is pretty “cut and dried.” When the National Anthem is played, you stand. Period. Hats off.
Period. That’s what you do. Period. A hundred reasons why. A thousand reasons why. A million reasons why. I don’t know the exact number of those who have died, defending the Flag, but each one represents a number to stand. Proudly. It’s not about me. It’s about them. But, could it be, that the opportunity could exist, to make this most sacred of traditions … about “me?” The command, and it has always seemed like a “command” and not a “choice issue,” was to:
“Ladies and Gentlemen, please stand and remove your hats.”
Period.

So … the question I had, as I looked at the photo, was …
If this isn’t about “me,” why did you remove your helmet?
Why did you take off your helmet, if it wasn’t about “you?”

So, now, and there are millions and millions of proud Americans (and this is not a “knock” against the magazine) who don’t read Time.
I know I haven’t, since.
Anyway, there are also millions and millions of proud Americans who don’t follow the NFL (No Flag Loyalty).
But, now, there are millions and millions of proud Americans who know who you are.
If it wasn’t just about “me,” why did you take the helmet off?

Yes, the other glaring question may not have been publicized, but, it has to have been thought of, every time we see a player kneel:
If you don’t stand for our Flag, whose Flag do you stand for?

Oh … you aren’t standing for any Flag?
I think we get it.
Then … it has to be about “me.”

By the way, I just learned this week that, and I am serious about not knowing this, the NFL (No Flag Loyalty) is a non-profit entity. Not the individual teams, which, of course, are a true business entity, but the NFL (No Flag Loyalty), as a “League,” is recognized as a non-profit entity.

What a Country! Man … I would stand for the Anthem!

Notice that, in all of this writing, I haven’t mentioned anything about how great it must be to make millions of dollars … playing a game … yes … playing a game … to be a celebrity and admired athlete, with all the notoriety which comes with it … yeah … I’d have issues with a Country like that … Making big money playing a game … being famous … the freedoms-even more of which I can now enjoy because of my inflated income … man, oh man … I would be the first on the field, and would beg … yes, beg … to have the honor of holding the Flag … I wouldn’t just stand … I would leap to my feet … and, scream out the words … to honor those who have given so much … so that I could have … so much …

The more I think about it, the more I realize that, this “stand for the Anthem” issue, is a really big deal … Man … all that money … all that fame … all that celebrity … I would be praying for another opportunity to show my appreciation to the brave men and women, and especially those who have died defending my opportunities … defending that Flag …. Defending our Country … Praying to have another opportunity to show my appreciation …

Unless, of course, I wasn’t thankful.
I wasn’t grateful.
Because … then … it would be about them.
And, not about “me.”

I am fully aware that I am writing this the day before the Super Bowl. Will I watch? Yes.
Am I still a fan? Yes.
Am I ashamed of the NFL (No Flag Loyalty) decision to not broadcast the National Anthem during “regular” football games?
Yes.
Am I embarrassed about the NFL (No Flag Loyalty) decision to not broadcast the National Anthem during “regular” football games?
Yes.

I’m sure they will, tomorrow, make a “big deal” about their commitment to Veterans, and, they will broadcast our National Anthem. They may even act like it’s “their idea” to do so. I’ll remember, back a few months ago, when, all of a sudden, our National Anthem wasn’t part of the broadcast. How, when a close friend aired his disgust over this “not standing” issue, I defended the apology of a team who wrote that “maybe” it was the wrong thing to do, to not come out to the field during the National Anthem … I mean, I defended the team … but, his answer still resounds:

“It’s too late.”

By the way, tomorrow, they may even play a spot or two about their disapproval of gambling.

Sorry … I had to take a moment to check the “latest line” for the game. After all, isn’t all this “underdog/favorite” stuff based upon gambling?

Oh … I didn’t include a quote from Carol this time. Well … I must choose carefully … Her Father, too, had his casket draped with the American Flag … we both stood while “Taps” was played … we both heard all 21 rounds … We still have his medals, and his “Berlin” patch:

“If they’re kneeling, they’d better be praying.”

Closing statement to those who think that a simple thing like just standing during the singing/playing of our Nation Anthem has nothing to do with honoring/respecting/recognizing the dedication and sacrifice of those who serve/who have served our Country:
“Yeah, it does.”

Richard. Vincent. Rose.
American
Founder/President
Freedom Unlimited Resources

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The Price for Freedom-Video Sixteen

For the moment, as we look ahead to Veterans Day, we conclude this series, the same way we began:
Featuring a Memorial Day speech from President Ronald Reagan, which supplied our banner for the series:

“The price for this freedom has been high … but we have never been unwilling to pay that price.”

Now, we feature the same speech, with new video background.
But, the words still ring true.

Here’s what we wrote, back in June, as we began this series:

Just think of all the freedoms we enjoy … every day …
We should pause … every day … to think about … to remember … to appreciate … to honor …
to pay our deepest respect and gratitude … To carefully consider …

What this freedom cost.

Included in the speech was an emotional reading of “The Pledge,” sometimes called “The Warriors Pledge” or “The Soldiers Pledge,” which was discovered in the diary of fallen soldier Martin A. Treptow.
Here is the exact text, written on the flyleaf of the
young soldier’s diary:

My Pledge
America must win this war
Therefore
I will work
I will save
I will sacrifice
I will endure
I will fight cheerfully
and do my utmost
as if the issue of the whole struggle
depended on me alone.

“We must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women … It is a weapon that we as Americans do have … Let that be understood by those who practice terrorism, and prey
upon their neighbors … They will be reminded that peace is the highest aspiration of  the American people. We will negotiate for it … sacrifice for it … We will not surrender for it … Now or ever …
We are Americans”
President Ronald Reagan

 

The Price for Freedom-Video Fifteen-Andy Rooney “Where Have the Heroes Gone?”

“I was a reporter for ‘The Stars and Stripes’, and I saw a lot of heroes …”

Our fifteenth video in this series features Any Rooney, who would conclude this “Few Minutes” segment on “Sixty Minutes” with this statement:

“War is civilization at its worst, and it’s a strange twist that there’s more heroism at war than at any other time. Men do things for each other at war, that they’d never think of doing for each other in peace. Why is that?”

As we remembered in our first video featuring Mr. Rooney, Andy Rooney began his career in newspapers while in the Army during World War II. He would be one of the first American journalists to visit the Nazi concentration camps, and one of the first to write about them.

Indeed, he knows of what he speaks:
For his service as a war correspondent in combat zones during the war, Rooney was decorated with the Bronze Star Medal (the Bronze Star), given for either heroic achievement, heroic service, meritorious achievement, or meritorious service in a combat zone. He was also awarded the Air Medal, given for meritorious achievement while participating in aerial flight.

As we continue to remember real heroes, let us also continue to remember the price paid for our freedom, and that

“The price for this freedom has been high …”

 

The Price for Freedom-Video Fourteen-Robin Williams as The Flag-We’ll Stand

I can’t explain it … but … I “discovered” this video in my files … a video I had seen, years ago, but was unable to “save” it, or unable to transfer it in a format that I could share it …

I have often been in this folder, on my Desktop, where I save videos for future use … in fact, I was just there a couple of days ago … but, it wasn’t there …

It was there … today … as I began to work on the latest installment in “The Price for Freedom” series.

Here goes …

Our fourteenth video in this series features the amazing talent of Robin Williams, captured in a live performance on
March 22, 1982 … this was 35 years ago … 35 years ago …

All of the production credits are included in the video …

Throughout this series, I have, in this introduction, featured quotes or text from the featured video.
The subject of “The Flag” has been in the news a lot, lately … As a sports fan, I am aware of this …
I guess, even if you’re not a sports fan, you are aware of news about “The Flag.”

Funny … I really haven’t, even once, been asked about “my stand” on this situation …
I guess … people don’t have to ask … they, just, already know …

At School, we say the Pledge of Allegiance every day … the same time, every day, between 1st and 2nd period.
Today … a busy Friday … it was Homecoming Day here … so, I took advantage of the time between periods to visit
the faculty restroom. While there, I heard the announcement … to “Please stand for the Pledge of Allegiance.”
Whoops!!!
There, of course, is a pause, between the announcement to stand, and the Pledge …

Yes … that was me, barreling down the hall, hand over heart, racing to the Library, which was the closest
location which I knew had the American Flag … I made it! I may have broken every rule, including the law of
gravity to make it, but I made it … as I crossed the threshold of the Library, right-hand door, I could see The Flag …
The Flag, I may add, which flies above a framed display of a folded American Flag, which, folded in that “triangle,”
contains The Flag which flew on board military aircraft in Afghanistan, and was donated to the Library …

The “triangle-fold” Flag which matched the pin I wore on my left shirt collar today … a pin of The Flag, folded in a
triangle … with the words “IN HONOR” underneath The Flag … A pin I wear every day … A pin which was presented to me
at my Father’s Funeral …

Where The Flag was draped over my beloved Father’s casket …
The Flag that was presented, in that “Triangle Fold,” to my Sister, at graveside, after a 21-Gun Salute …
“on behalf of 
a grateful nation.”

I guess that’s ’nuff said …

Yeah, I’ll stand for The Pledge.
Yeah, I’ll stand for The Anthem.
Yeah, I’ll stand.
I mean … How can I not???

35 years ago, Robin Williams (here’s where I add quotes and text from the video) said, as The Flag, “I had a tough time
for a while. I been in a lot of wars. They fired missiles and muskets at me, but, you know, come the dawn’s early light,
I’m still there … But people haven’t always been respectful of me. Sometimes, it’s been tough. There’ve been some
people who have tried to spit on me, trample me, burn me … sometimes some Americans, too … ”

Mr. Williams would, then, stoop down on one knee … yes, kneel on one knee, as The Flag, and say, “That’s not my favorite
position, because, that’s half-mast …”

Again today, I was describing Carol to a co-worker, and, because it’s true, once again, it just came out:
“She is the most genuinely nice person I’ve ever known.”

However … I can’t print how she feels about those who won’t stand.
Yeah, I’ll stand.
My Father … her Father … So many in our family … like yours … have served …
Or … still serve …
Yeah, we’ll stand …

As we continue to remember, continue “to stand,” because

“The price for this freedom has been high …”

Here’s Robin Williams as “The Flag:”

 

The Price for Freedom-Video Thirteen: Amazing Grace/Amazing Images

“I would like to thank soldiers of past and present for their service and everything they have done. I don’t think we realize how much you boys have done.”

Our thirteenth video in this series features
“Amazing Grace/Amazing Images.”

Originally produced as a “Veterans Day” Salute, the only text in the video, other than the “thank you” which opens this introductions, are the words of a soldier, writing to his son:
” … I LOVE YOU VERY MUCH AND MISS YOU SO MUCH, MY HEART HURTS.
AND I HOPE TO GET HOME TO YOU AND MOMMY SOON … AND DON’T FORGET ME.
LOVE ALWAYS,
DADDY”

As we continue to remember, to “NEVER FORGET,” that

“The price for this freedom has been high …”

 

 

The Price for Freedom-Video Twelve-Andy Rooney on Memorial Day

“No official day is adequate for something like that …”

Our twelfth video in this series features Andy Rooney’s famous commentary on “Memorial Day.”

Andy Rooney was perhaps best known for his weekly broadcast “A Few Minutes with Andy Rooney,” which aired as part of the CBS News program “60 Minutes,” from 1978 to
2011. His final regular appearance on “60 Minutes” aired on October 2, 2011. He died one month later, on November 4, 2011, at age 92.

“I have more to remember on Memorial Day than most of you …”

Andy Rooney began his career in newspapers while in the Army when, in 1942, he began writing for “Stars and Stripes,” in London, during World War II.
In February 1943, he was flying with the Eighth Air Force, as a correspondent who flew on the second American bombing raid over Germany. He was the first journalist to reach the Ludendorff Bridge after the 9th Armored Division captured it on March 7, 1945.

Later, Andy Rooney was one of the first American journalists to visit the Nazi concentration camps, and one of the first to write about them.

For his service as a war correspondent in combat zones during the war, Rooney was decorated with the Bronze Star Medal (the Bronze Star), given for either heroic achievement, heroic service, meritorious achievement, or meritorious service in a
combat zone. He was also awarded the Air Medal, given for meritorious achievement while participating in aerial flight.

Andy Rooney’s “end-of-show” segment on 60 Minutes, “A Few Minutes with Andy Rooney” (originally “Three Minutes or So With Andy Rooney”), began in 1978, as a summer replacement for the debate segment “Point/Counterpoint.”

If you remember, Rooney was always seated behind a walnut table … his own table, which he had made himself.

Here’s Andy Rooney asking us to “consider what they did for us” …

Let us, also, now, continue to remember, to realize, that
“The price for this freedom has been high …”

 

The Price for Freedom-Video Eleven

“Remembering our fallen heroes
Their family and friends who bear
The burdens of great sorrow and pain”

Our eleventh video in this series gives us another opportunity to remember, to honor, and to think about, those who served, and, that those who serve “are not forgotten.”

“Who kept the faith
And fought the fight;
The glory theirs,
The duty ours”
Wallace Bruce
From the poem, “Memorial Day”

Let us, also, now, continue to remember, to realize, that

“The price for this freedom has been high …”