Saturday, July 2, 2011

Our nation has a proud heritage for mankind

Whenever the Star Spangled Banner is sung - only one stanzas are sung - it has four.

In the piece referenced by author Schley below, Isaac Asimov wrote an essay, published in March 1991, which has all four stanzas and explains the meaning of each.

Of course today the last stanza isn't too popular as it refers to God (and yes, Asimov was an atheist and he didn't have a problem with it) and to...manifest destiny, I suppose - but remember that it's original meaning, the original cause they were fighting for, was the 1815 war against England.

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war's desolation,
Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the Heav'n - rescued land
Praise the Pow'r that hath made and preserved us a nation.

Then conquer we must, for our cause is just,
And this be our motto--"In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave. Our nation has a proud heritage for mankind
by Emory Schley
Monday, we celebrate our nation’s founding 235 years ago. A lot of history has been made since then: the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Spanish-American War, two world wars, Korea, Vietnam, multiple conflicts in the Middle East, the invention of aviation, telephones, the telegraph, movies, electric light bulbs, television, nuclear power, trips to the moon and back, satellites that have revolutionized our lives, masers and lasers, space shuttles and more medical discoveries per decade than there are dollars in your wallet.

Through it all, Americans have been a proud people, comprised mainly of the castoffs of other nations around the world. So much history in such a short span of time makes the mind numb with disbelief when you start thinking about the impact the United States has had on the rest of the world.

And the proudest accomplishment of all is a Constitution that guarantees freedom for all, a condition far more appreciated by immigrants than natural-born citizens, unfortunately.

One of those immigrants, the late Dr. Isaac Asimov, in an attempt to get Americans to more fully appreciate their history, penned one of the most moving pieces I’ve ever read. It’s available at many sites on the Internet, but here’s just one where you can find it:

I liked it so much, I’ve downloaded it to my computer and read it from time to time, just so I don’t forget ... Call it up and read it for yourself before Monday rolls around; you’ll be glad you did. I can think of no more appropriate piece for the upcoming holiday!

PROUD HERITAGE: Florida Highlands’ Al Simpkins wrote: “I had the honor of being chosen to go on the Honor Flight last September. I watched this video and came to this conclusion: Our younger generations do not know, and probably do not care, and are too busy on cellphones and iPads. etc. to CARE what is the reason for their being here now to ENJOY all this FREEDOM!

“They don’t get it in school!

“Maybe before I join the thousand WW2, Korean and Vietnam vets leaving us every day, some pride and remembrance and positive actions will come from this type of video if they see it. Enjoy and pass it on. Especially to them. There may be hope yet!”

You can see the video at

* Seaborn: Oceanography Blog
* Star Trek Report: Space Sciences
* Volcano Seven: Treasure and Treasure Hunters
* Rush Limbaugh Report

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