I didn’t live through WWII, and there are certainly other reasons behind my patriotism, but the history and images from this time period evoke a feeling in me that is hard to put into words. I am beyond grateful for the sacrifices of those who fought in this war, and I’m heartbroken over the events that brought this war to action.
It is those two emotions that drive me to work harder for the preservation of our nation, the values we hold dear and the freedoms it provides—even when the odds seem insurmountable and the road is lonely. I can’t imagine what the world would look like today if America had not fought the extremism and imperialism that permeated the ’30s and ’40s, or if Americans had not rallied around those efforts by serving both overseas and on the home front. I realize that other nations worked with the US, and that many Americans opposed our involvement, but no one can deny the prominent role we played or the patriotism that saturated the nation.
There are forces at work today that seek to destroy America. As in the 1930’s with Hitler’s extremism, these forces have crept in slowly, but they are gaining footholds and seeking to rewrite our history and our destiny. To allow that would be to allow the blood of the men and women who died protecting our way of life from extremism to have spilled for nothing. We must not allow that to occur. Our differences need to not divide us. We must find common ground and we must unite. As our forces did on the shores of Normandy (and around the world in so many other battles we have fought), we must come together as one body to preserve freedom for all, to promote personal achievement, and to secure the blessings of liberty. A house divided cannot stand.
To the men and women who gave their last full measure of devotion on the beaches of Normandy and soil all over Europe on June 6, 1944, I will never forget and will continue to fight for the freedoms you died protecting. To the families of those individuals my heart goes out to you and my eternal thanks for your sacrifice.