Last Friday, I found myself walking the rows of Boston’s Granbury Burying Grounds. During my weekend walk I found myself wondering what the Revolutionary War figures buried there would think of the state of affairs in which we find ourselves today.
Would Paul Revere, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and Robert Treat Paine still feel the same about our version of the country as they did about theirs? Would the five men killed in the Boston Massacre feel the collective sacrifices since their deaths still worth it?
Walking Boston’s Granbury Burying Grounds is a lesson in American history. If the coins still have meaning, not all of us have forgotten the lessons.
For that matter, do the pennies still left on those Revolutionary gravesites have meaning today? Or have we run from our history to the point that the pennies are nothing more than a tourist tradition?
Today, as some prepare for “just another weekend” others are reflecting on tomorrow’s twentieth anniversary of radical Islam’s first victory over the United States.
We’re also stinging from the realization we just handed them a second great win. They’re going to celebrate that victory by inaugurating a new Afghani government that has several “leaders” that sit atop our “most wanted terrorist” list.
Are friends who lost their limbs fighting over the past twenty years re-evaluating the cost they paid? Two decades of veterans paid the freight for politicians who ultimately chose expediency over victory. They might not feel betrayed, but I certainly do.
Watching uncivilized terrorists in pajamas tied up with ropes parade around high-tech weaponry given them by the same politicians who want to outlaw my modern sporting rifle makes me as uncertain about our future as I was on the afternoon of September 11, 2001.
But terrorists don’t concern me as much as incompetent politicians. The latest polls say I’m not alone. More than half of Americans say they feel less safe than before 9/11.
As a nation, we are troubled. We’ve watched violent protests replace civil discourse. When we express that concern, we’re berated by “leaders” who have discarded any pretense of caring what we think or want.
Like nearly everything else they’ve done, that’s not smart.
They’ve forgotten our founding fathers were dissidents. They were peaceful until provoked, but so dedicated to their fundamental rights they were more than willing to die - or kill- to protect them.
They took on the most powerful nation on earth and won. Later, they repeated the win, proving to the world it was no fluke.
From their work, our ancestors built the nation that grew to become a superpower, but never a despot.
When presented with facts, Americans have never failed to do the right thing. I believe that’s still the case today.
Unfortunately, facts are in desperately short supply. Instead, “thought leaders” try to force-feed us narrative.
Facts don’t fit their design for our futures. So they ignore them.
The same way they ignore the fact there are still Americans stranded in Afghanistan.
Twenty years ago, I watched in shock as New York City, Washington, DC, and a field outside Shanksville, Pennsylvania became ground zeroes. I knew people who died simply because they went to work that morning.
Since then I’ve known others who willingly put their lives on the line to try and prevent another 9/11. Not all of them came home. Many who will bear scars that will never heal.
Some of them are obvious. Others aren’t. But the damage is undeniable.
Twenty years later, it appears our leaders appear to have provided our enemies with the additional means to bring their anger to our homes.
I’m not forgetting the importance of 9/11. Neither should you.
Forgetting history risks repeating it.
— Jim Shepherd