Wednesday, December 7, 2011

70th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor

I’m feeling a little emotional today. As most of you know, today is the 70th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The events of that day changed so many people’s lives and shaped the future for generations to come. There was a wonderful documentary on the History channel about it last night, followed by the Ben Affleck movie, Pearl Harbor (and yes, I know some people think that movie is cheesy, but I really liked it.) But the events of that day were shocking and unifying and definitely something to be remembered.

Winston Churchill said once (and I paraphrase) that he knew as soon as Pearl Harbor happened and the United States entered into World War II, that Adolph Hitler’s fate was sealed. And he knew that not only because of the military might that the United States would bring, but I also believe he knew that because of the resolve and spirit of American citizens to defend and fight for principles that are worth dying for.

I have a son who wants to join the military when he is old enough. It scares me to think about it, but I am also proud of the ideals that he holds dear. Freedom is a precious thing and something that is often taken for granted. I hope that doesn't happen in my family, and that my children can see what a privilege it is to have the ability to make so many of their life choices.

As we approach the holiday season and the hustle and bustle of buying gifts and planning family get-togethers, with the chorus of Peace on Earth ringing in our ears, I am reminded of how bleak a Christmas it would have been for those who lost loved ones at Pearl Harbor. And while peace on earth is an elusive ideal in our world today, I still continue to hope that, at this time of year especially, we will remember those who have sacrificed everything to defend freedom.

I hope you take a bit of time today to talk to your children about what the attack on Pearl Harbor meant to this country and to its citizens. And maybe tell them how grateful you are to live in a country that offers so much to so many. It’s important to make sure our children and grandchildren know the values and principles that those men and women, both those who died and those who survived Pearl Harbor, knew---that the defense of freedom is worth fighting for.


Debra Erfert said...

And that freedom is still being fought right here in America on our southern border, Julie. My son is in the U. S. Customs and Border Protection, (Border Patrol--front lines,) and almost every contact he makes in country is drug related. They run--he runs after them not knowing if they're armed. Some are--some are not.

Pearl Harbor was obvious, and filled us with anger and the determination to stop the hate stomping across the world. What can we do when no one knows about the invasion of drugs--drugs that rip the family apart from inside? Values and principles have no meaning when children are stoned, and steal, even kill to support their habits. Society corrodes like so much rust on exposed metal. But . . . my son, like those brave men and women of WWII, Iraq and Afghanistan, believe our freedom is worth fighting for or he wouldn't volunteeringly be putting himself out there everyday. He loves this land as much as his new Paraguayan bride does--as much as his father and I do.

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Debra, I completely agree. The enemy has changed and is much more stealthy now, but there are so many brave men and women willing to stand up to it, I think that is what makes me emotional. There are good people in this world who are willing to give everything for people they don't even know.

And you're a good mom for instilling those values in your son.

Michael Offutt, Expert Critic said...

That's okay. The Americans got their revenge by spraying Tokyo with kerosene and then dropping a fire bomb. After that, they dropped two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It's all about revenge, right?

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Michael, as I said in my blog, I think peace on earth is an ideal that will probably never be reached. But I am still glad for people who will stand up for freedom.

Charlie Moore said...

When the Savior returns, Julie. When the Savior returns. There is evil in the world no doubt about that. But good and praiseworthy things also exist. Keeping the faith in Christ will keep us moving in the right direction.

Pearl Harbor was a unifying event for our country at that time. There have been many of those. Think of the Declaration of Independence early on and later Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation (the Civil War) just to name a couple. Many of the same types of things have happened in your home country of Canada and in other countries seeking the freedoms we enjoy. It all starts with Jesus Christ.

Sarah Pearson said...

A very thoughtful post Julie. I'm glad that, as much as there are people who will do bad, there are people willing to stand and fight.