I was looking at the flag the other day as I stood there listening to the National Anthem being blasted over speakers at a high school football field. I looked at it and I just thought about all the wars that have been fought to fly that flag. I tried to imagine all the lives that have been lost, and blood that’s been shed. I thought about campaigns and politics, and how none of that really matters when you think about what some have given to call this place America. I wondered if we had forgotten the meaning of one nation, and what it took to be one nation? Countries all over the world losing hundreds of thousands of people in effort to be one nation. Surely those who sacrificed their lives are worthy of us setting aside our differences to be one nation, to be the America they fought and died for. I wondered how we stopped believing as Americans? When did we give up on ourselves? When did our opinions outweigh our convictions and take precedence over the honor that is due to those who served our country? How could we give up on a country those brave men and women gave their lives for? As that flag waved in the spring breeze on that early May afternoon, there in the presence of other Americans of all races and backgrounds, I thought about how beautiful it was that we were all together. People tell me all the time what America is guilty of. How democracy and capitalism are flawed systems, and how the moral compass of America has fallen short of true north, and they may have good points. I just want to know how that matters to the mother who has lost her son, or the wife who has lost her husband? What will you tell them he died fighting for? What about the son who has lost his mother, or the groom waiting for his bride to return from her tour? Did they give there lives for nothing? Surely there must be something still worth fighting for? I think the greatest cure to the sickness that is entitlement is gratefulness. America has so many people to be grateful for the majority of them remain unsung heroes. I thought about those people too, the ones we won’t read about in the history books or see on our twitter feeds. These men and women are fighting for a country a lot of it’s citizens don’t even believe in anymore. What America stands for is bigger than Washington politics and campaign slogans. It’s bigger than headlines on your favorite newspaper or your favorite political analyst, I’m sorry but your favorite talk radio host is not the savior to our ideals. I believe the hope for the recovery of our nation resides in the outlook of it’s citizens. An outlook that has been corrupted and distorted by media that exploits fears and troubles felt by the American people, all in the name of “news”. Now there was a lot of thinking going on in my head out there on the field that day, so much so that when I looked up I was on the forty yard line with my hand still on my chest. The anthem had been played and the ROTC team had marched off the field, but the flag was still waving. The last thing I remember thinking that day is how much I love America. Nothing is going to change that. No amount of negative headlines or corrupt politicians are going to sway me and my affections for this great nation. I wish we could all just get back to loving where we come from, and understanding that true love keeps no records of wrong doings, and is only interested in rebuilding and restoring. I heart America, always have and I always will.