To celebrate the 242nd birthday of the United States, we thought we’d have some of our contributors write a bit about what patriotism means to them.  Our Founders were definitely Iron Butterflies as they wrote and implemented the Declaration of Independence.  For the full text of the Declaration of Independence, click on this link.

Many thanks to our contributors: Verlie Edwards, Sherry Jessop, Missy Stagers, Carolyn Phillips and Norma Alford.

Verlie Edwards

“Patriotism means feeling my heart swell with pride when I think about our military men and women who fight daily for the freedoms we hold so dear. I received this coaster at a Society of Professional Journalist (then Sigma Delta Chi) convention and it has moved from job to job with me. I’m honored and proud to be an American.”

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Sherry Jessop

Patriotism to me is the acknowledgement of the sacrifices that have been made to provide the freedom we all enjoy today in the United States.  Patriots like my grandfather, who served in WW I as a pilot, or my dad who served in WWII on an aircraft carrier, inspired me to love and support our country every day of the year.  It is the pride I feel when my family gathers together every 4th of July to share their stories, celebrate their lives and remember our heroes.

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Missy Stagers

Patriotism:  Love, pride and respect for the country and belief system it represents.  For us in the U.S. – Freedom and individualism.  We are the freest country in the world with the most opportunity for anyone to be whatever they chose to achieve and think freely for themselves.

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Carolyn Phillips

Patriotism to me means that one stands united with others in relation to God as well as for their country’s armed forces.  If it weren’t for them, we wouldn’t have a free country.

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I Saw Old Glory Today By Norma Alford

I saw Old Glory today. It was her finest hour; she fought for her life in a hostile land where no friendly voices could be heard to comfort her. Her once bright stars were dimmed with the grime of war-torn streets and her vibrant stripes smeared with blood.

She fought valiantly against the horde of angry bodies and recoiled against the flames of their torches, as these anonymous enemies burned the fabric of her being. Still, she fought for her life. But she was alone against many.

Yes, I saw Old Glory today; but she was beyond my reach, and I could not save her. Where were friends who would extend a hand and pull her from the grip of those who would destroy her and all that she stands for?

Yet, she did not weep or condemn the savior that she knew would not come. She was determined to resist, and she furiously furled and unfurled her silken cloth in an effort to thwart the angry hands desecrating her.

She was overwhelmed, but she would not surrender. The night sky of the foreign land was lit up by the flames that now consumed her. She knew she would be obliterated, but that her valor would never die.

There were none to raise a sword on her behalf or say a consoling word in her dying agony. Oh, yes, I saw Old Glory today, and it was her finest hour!

Many thanks to our contributors: Verlie Edwards, Sherry Jessop, Missy Stagers, Carolyn Phillips and Norma Alford.