Day by Peary
week we get to vote in the mid term elections. Next week we have Veterans Day.
As far as I'm concerned, we should combine the two and celebrate Veterans
Day on the day we vote.
Glad you asked.
it, if it weren't for Veterans, we wouldn't have elections and the privilege of
voting, would we? I find it appalling that our average turnout for election day
in this country hovers around 35-40%. We should be ashamed. We live in a time
where the citizens of some countries are still denied the right to vote. Worse
than this are the countries where the citizens are allowed to vote, but are told
who to vote for under penalty of punishment or death. Imagine this happening in
Our country started out peaceful enough, but things changed
with the conditions and treatment sent over to us by good old King George III.
Common folks decided to take matters into their own hands and a newly formed army
led by mostly untrained officers were able to defeat an army of the most powerful
country in the world. Our soldiers were poorly equipped, seldom paid, harshly
treated and certainly not any match for the English.
We all know what
happened, don't we?
The list of struggles for our freedom goes on and
on and continues to this very day. You and I may disagree on the current war in
Iraq, but at least we are free to disagree. This is a fundamental right that is
still not available to many in our world today. I truthfully believe with all
of my heart that one of the major reasons our country and our people are so hated
by so many in the world is very simple.
These folks dislike us do so for
a couple of reasons. They envy what we have and think we are stupid because we
do not realize how well off we actually are. In comparison to most of the world,
we are a rich nation. We consume more and have more than any other country in
the world. Not only do we have more, but also we are on a constant quest to obtain
I know, I know, it seems like none of us ever get ahead of the
curve with bills every month and our cars breaking down from time to time and
oh, yeah, there's that loan or tuition bill that has to be paid. But, compared
to rest of the world, we have cars, we have televisions, we have fresh food, and
we have electricity and running water. This is certainly not the case for the
remainder of the world, is it? Running water, wait; let me correct that, clean,
safe running water is on the list of items most wanted by a huge number of people
on this planet. Yet, each of us wastes how much each and every day day?
I may have told you this story and if I have, forgive me. Several years ago, we
sponsored a couple from China through our church. He had gotten a scholarship
to work on his PHD and she came over to help him make a living while he was attending
school. They became close friends of ours. The first time she came to our house,
we were showing her around and her interest focused on the kitchen. She fell in
love with the dishwasher and could not get over how convenient this appliance
was and what a labor saving device it was. When we showed her the garbage disposal,
she was astonished to think that we ever used it. When we explained that it was
used to get rid of unwanted food, her curiosity turned to a very telling question.
"Why would you ever need this?" she asked.
"To dispose of unwanted
food," we answered.
"Why?" she persisted. "Is the food bad?"
but not always…we just don't want it anymore."
came to the point that she just could not understand why anyone in their right
minds would have such a machine in their house. The idea that you would throw
away perfectly good food was beyond her range of comprehension.
is simply this.
Most of us are better off than a lot of people on this
planet and yet we abuse our position by failing to recognize those who sacrificed
their lives or their liberty just so we could live in a free country, and have
the right to complain about it.
The veterans of yesterday and today made
it possible for all of us to vote. Don't let them down, don't let yourself down.,
vote every time.
If you don't, then you deserve the people who do get
© Peary Perry
From North America >
November 9, 2006 column
Syndicated weekly in 80 newspapers