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I Pledge Allegiance

Published:

In light of the recent appeals court ruling in California, with respect to the Pledge of Allegiance, the following recollection from Senator John McCain is very appropriate:

"The Pledge of Allegiance" - by Senator John McCain


As you may know, I spent f ive and one half years as a prisoner of war during the Vietnam War. In the early years of our imprisonment, the NVA kept us in solitary confinement or two or three to a cell. In 1971 the NVA moved us from these conditions of isolation into large rooms with as many as 30 to 40 men to a room.

This was, as you can imagine, a wonderful change and was a direct result of the efforts of millions of Americans onbehalf of a few hundred POWs 10 ,000 miles from home.

One of the men who moved into my room was a young man named Mike Christian.

Mike came from a small town near Selma , Alabama He didn't wear a pair of shoes until he was 13 years old. At 17, he enlisted in the US Navy. He later earned a commission by going to Officer Training School Then he became a Naval Flight Officer and was shot down and captured in 1967. Mike had a keen and dee p appreciation of the opportunities thi s country and our military provide for people who want to work and want to succeed.

As part of the change in treatment, the Vietnamese allowed some prisoners to receive packages from home. In some of these packages were handkerchiefs, scarves and other items of clothing.

Mike got himself a bamboo needle. Over a period of a couple of months, he created an American flag and sewed on the inside of his shirt.

Every afternoon, before we had a bowl of soup, we would hang Mike's shirt on the wall of the cell and say the Pledge of Allegiance.

I know the Pledge of Allegiance may not seem the most important part of our day now, but I can assure you that in that stark cell it was indeed the most important and meaningful event.

One day the Vietnamese searched our cell, as they did periodically, and discovered Mike's shirt with the flag sewn inside, and removed it.

That evening they returned, opened the door of the cell, and for the benefit of all of us, beat Mike Christian severely for the next couple of hours, then they opened the door of the cell and threw him in. We cleaned him up as well as we could.

The cell in which we lived had a concrete slab in the middle on which we slept, four naked light bulbs hung in each corner of the room.

As I said, we tried to clean up Mike as well as we could. After the excitement died down, I looked in the corner of the room, and sitting there beneath that dim light bulb with a piece of red cloth, another shirt and his bamboo needle, was my friend, Mike Christian. He was sitting there with his eyes almost shut from the beating he had received, making another American flag. He was not making the flag because it made Mike Christian feel better. He was making that flag because he knew how important it was to us to be able to Pledge our allegiance to our flag and country.

So the next time you say the Pledge of Allegiance, you must never forget the sacrifice and courage that thousands of Americans have made to build our nation and promote freedom around the world

You must remember our duty, our honor, and our country

"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."


PASS THIS ON... and on... and on! You can even send it back to me, I don't mind, because its worth reading again

Entry #114

Comments

1.
justxploringComment by justxploring - January 23, 2008, 5:40 pm
Sir Metro, thanks. This story is beautiful. Not sure how true it really it, but I definitely salute the flag.
I have always pledged allegiance to my country. Again, thanks for sharing!

By the way, too bad McCain is milking his war hero stories so much for personal gain. Do you realize McCain introduced legislation that would fine blogs up to $300,000 for offensive statements, photos and videos posted by visitors on comment boards? Is this the person we want running the country? First we get the patriot act, then laws against online gambling, so all we need is an attack on our God given right to exchange ideas. He says it's to protect children. But any form of censorship is dangerous. Child porn is repulsive of course, but what he proposes is to stop freedom of speech, which the Bush administration has done a fine job of doing anyway.

2.
jarasanComment by jarasan - January 23, 2008, 9:33 pm
McCain is anti-first amendment. McCain Feingold is an assault on America and its Constitution. How has Bush stopped freedom of speech? Freedom of speech and child porn are two different things, as well as on-line gambling. Pornifying children is illegal and wrong and should be punishable to the extreme, women and men are responsible for it and should be removed from society. The Patriot act shouldn't scare anyone who isn't a terroist, nobody cares what you do unless you are planning to kill Americans or corroborate with terrorists, Don't people get it? Nobody has lost any freedoms, you can do whatever your heart desires, Bush has kept this country safe for going on seven years, we back off, game over, we get smacked again, and don't think they haven't foiled a bunch of attempts, they have, everyone should thank Bush, he has done a good job. God bless America.
3.
justxploringComment by justxploring - January 24, 2008, 2:10 am
Jarasan, I wasn't saying child porn is something we should accept or tolerate. It's so far from my understanding, that I can't even talk about it. How anyone can look at a child as sexual is beyond my mind's comprehension, BA in Psychology and all.   It's often hard to express yourself online in a few words. I was only saying that he is using it as an excuse to take away freedom of expression and our first amendment rights.
4.
SirMetroComment by SirMetro - February 1, 2008, 12:47 pm
For the record, I do not know if this story is true. Honestly, I don't know if it's anything more then a work of fiction to aide in making a greater hero out of a person.

I do find entertaining the commentary that it generates.

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