For some reason I’ve been receiving some really great emails lately. You know the kind…the ones that have been around the world and have a kagillion email addresses attached to them. These are the kind of emails you often just delete because you simply don’t have the time to read them or forward them on like a good girl or boy. They can all be pigon-holed into various categories like all of the forwarded emails detailed here, here, and here.
For all the times you receive a forwarded email that just doesn’t appeal to you occasionally you receive one that really speaks to you in some way. Perhaps it’s the safety tip you need, the joke that makes you laugh after a long day, or it involves a little known or easily forgotten event, fact, or theory that intrigues you.
The other day Dear Sister forwarded an email to me and at the top she typed “Do you know about this?” Well, I vaguely knew about the subject of the email, but I had never checked it out to verify the information it contained.
I’m glad I did.
This week for my wordless entry I posted an image of Mike Christian. Mike is the subject of a story that Senator and presidential candidate John McCain speaks about when discussing his imprisonment at the Hanoi Hilton during the Vietnam War. Senator McCain tells the story much better than I can. Watch and listen and then finish my post below.
Most people in this country don’t get the privilege of saying the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag each day. They begin their work day with a bagel, a cup of coffee, a newspaper, a conversation around the water cooler, or catching up on reading their favorite blogs and websites.
As an educator I get that privilege I’m so grateful for. Each day I get to stand, place my hand over my heart and recite the words to pledge my honor and allegiance to the county I love. I cherish that.
I understand that there are some, a small minority, which for religious reasons or lack of any religion do not wish to say the pledge. I have no problem with this as long as it does not interfere with my right to say it.
There are some who want to enjoy all of the privileges of living in a free society, but want to see to it I don’t get to say the pledge the way I learned to say it and the way I think it should be. I understand those opinions and I do respect them, but I don’t understand their fight.
It’s your choice as an American. Say it or don’t say it, but don’t stop those who want to say it because you can’t. The prison guards at Hanoi Hilton couldn’t stop Mike Christian, and no editorial piece, no directive, no ruling, no law will stop me.
The information I found at POW Network advises Mike Christian died in a fire in 1983. There are also other interesting details there. Senator McCain’s written account of his story concerning Mike Christian can be found here, and Joan Clifton Coster crafted a poem about the incident.
Related Posts: Ever wonder about the meaning behind the words of the pledge? Read an explanation here.