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Archive for the ‘patriotism’ Category


Posted by Andrew Roman on June 15, 2010

In an age where multiculturalism is almost a moral imperative – where love and appreciation of country have been tossed aside in favor of building self-esteem, celebrating diversity and saving the planet from everything – patriotism, as a selling tool, is appallingly atypical. Good old fashioned, everyday, love-your-country, bread-and-butter, show-it-proudly patriotism seems to be the exception, not the rule – so much so that when it is employed in an advertising campaign, conservatives take special notice.

(Yes, we “old-fashioned” Constitution-loving, free-market, pro-second-amendment God-fearing types still tend to be moved by such things as waving flags, a military band and George Washington).

At the great Lady Cincinnatus blog (brought to my attention by Proof Positive), there is post called “Commercial of The Year.” It is an ad for the 2010 Dodge Challenger.

It is a must see.

A thought crossed my mind as I watched this spot for the third time.

How many of us can remember when military heroes – recipients of medals, citations, etc – routinely earned space on our hometown newspapers’ front page? It was automatic that those who were recognized for meritorious service while defending the nation would be afforded above-the-fold, page one status.

It was a given.

Recently, I had the opportunity to “rescue” a whole bunch of yellowing Toledo Blade newspapers from the World War II era. (They were being used as insulation in an old farm house owned by my wife’s family). The number of front page stories about local boys who earned various honors on the battlefield were simply too many to count.

What a different time it was.

Today, one is hard pressed to find such recognition except, perhaps, in some very small town publications and local neighborhood papers.

There are many great blogs, however, that pick up the slack.

Thank God for them.

Watching this commercial made me think how, at one time, there was no higher honor – nothing that garnered the respect and admiration from the public at large – than serving in the United States military.

A nation that does not honor and revere its warriors cannot – and does not deserve to – endure.

(Serious stuff just from watching a car ad, eh?)

Now, I’m off to go look at Dodge Challenger.


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Posted by Andrew Roman on June 14, 2010

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Posted by Andrew Roman on December 9, 2009

Colonel Van T. Barfoot

From the “This One Should Have Been Obvious” file …

Another battle is in the books for retired Army Colonel Van T. Barfoot of Virginia – and a great big “V” for victory.

The 90 year old veteran of three wars – and a Medal of Honor Recipient – has won his fight to keep a 21-foot flagpole in his front yard. The Sussex Square Homeowners Association (HOA) has withdrawn its demand to have the pole taken down. Likewise, they assured Barfoot there will be no more threats of legal action.

This is fantastic news on so many levels – not the least of which is the fact that a genuine American hero can now fly his flag in the manner he sees fit without having to worry about lawsuits.

I wish I could say I was assured from the outset that Colonel Barfoot would come out triumphant in this one, but I can’t. Not that Barfoot couldn’t handle the fight, mind you. The man could probably strap on a gun today and give the enemy all it can handle. Rather, my concern was with the HOA – that they would be more than willing to forego common decency and go all the way with this fight just to prove that they could.

From the Associated Press, through Fox News:

The association had threatened to take Barfoot to court if he failed to remove the pole from his suburban Richmond home by Friday. It had said the pole violated the neighborhood’s aesthetic guidelines.

[Senator Mark] Warner and Senator Jim Webb, both Virginia Democrats, had rallied behind Barfoot, a World War II veteran.

In a letter last week, Webb urged the association to “consider the exceptional nature of Col. Barfoot’s service when considering his pride and determination in honoring our flag.”

Barfoot’s fight also has lit up veterans bulletin boards and blog sites supporting him.

Good for Warner and Webb.

Even the greatest White House Press Secretary of all time, Robert Gibbs, said the whole thing was “silly.”

Some things simply transcend politics. (Actually, many things do). This is one of them.

As far as I can tell, save for a few knuckleheads, the entire country was behind Colonel Barfoot.

That this even became an issue in the first place exemplifies how much my country has changed over the years. Whereas at one time, Medal of Honor winners secured their rightful places on the front pages of American newspapers, today they’re threatened by attorneys for erecting “aesthetically inappropriate” flagpoles from which to fly the flag they gallantly defended.

God bless you, Colonel Barfoot.

Fly it proudly.

It’s the emblem of the land I love, the home of the free and the brave.

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Posted by Andrew Roman on December 4, 2009

Colonel Van T Barfoot

Please forgive my tone.

I can understand a lot of things I don’t agree with. To be opposed to something does not inherently mean it cannot be understood. But if I live to be one hundred years old, I will never understand the kind of “head-up-your-ass” idiocy on display in one homeowner’s association in Henrico County, Virginia.

Residents of the Sussex Square Homeowners Association (HOA) have the honor and privilege of having a genuine hero for a neighbor. He is 90-year old Colonel Van T. Barfoot, a Medal of Honor recipient, a veteran of three wars, a man who has a building named for him at the McGuire Veterans Hospital in Richmond, a man who has a section of highway in rural Mississippi named in his honor, a man who raises the American flag each and every morning and lowers it each day at dusk.

Association board members, however, are not happy with him.

Colonel Barfoot is being ordered to remove the flag pole on his property for “aesthetic” reasons.

And if the flag pole is not removed by 5:00PM tonight, according to the Coates & Davenport law firm in Richmond (representing the HOA), Barfoot will face “legal action being brought to enforce the Covenants and Restrictions against [him].”

No, really … the HOA has retained a lawyer.

From the Richmond Times-Dispatch:

There is no provision in the community’s rules expressly forbidding flagpoles, Barfoot’s daughter said. But she said the board ruled against her father’s fixture and ordered it removed in July, deciding that free-standing flag poles are not aesthetically appropriate. Short flag stands attached to porches dot the community.

“Dad sort of feels like this is the end,” said Margaret Nicholls, Barfoot’s daughter, who lives a few doors away. But she said this morning that she and her husband are attempting to generate support for her father’s cause, a flag-raising rite that he has undertaken for most of his life.

Barfoot received the Medal of Honor on the battlefield during World War II in Italy and fought as well in the Korean and Vietnam wars.

Barfoot began regularly flying the flag on Veteran’s Day this year despite the Sussex Square board’s decision.

He said in November that not flying the flag would be a sacrilege to him.

“There’s never been a day in my life or a place I’ve lived in my life that you couldn’t fly the American flag,” he said.

According to the HOA, this isn’t about the American flag, but rather, about the poll. But there is nothing – repeat, nothing – in the bylaws of this particular association forbidding the installation of a flag pole. In fact, the decision by the association declaring the pole “not aesthetically appropriate” was made after it was put in.

The reality is, Colonel Barfoot would have had no reason whatsoever to think that such a thing would be deemed inappropriate. Why would he? Why would anyone? It is a damn flag pole, after all. And it is his property.

And I can’t help but wonder what sort of dunderheaded weasles – with nothing better to do than summon high-priced lawyers to threaten a 90-year old war hero – would find a flag pole unseemly. I can understand frowning upon glow-in-the-dark purple shingles, or placing a see-through outhouse by the driveway, or even allowing goats to run free in the yard, but a flag pole?

To each his own, I suppose.

But I wonder … does the association also frown on yard ornaments like gnomes, pinwheels and statuettes? How about porcelain duckies or all-weather bunnies? Or bird houses? A flag pole is obviously not a lawn ornament, but it would likely fall under the same bylaw provision. It’s hard to imagine that lawn ornaments would be forbidden, even in a dinky little HOA in Henrico County, Virginia.

Incidentally, I’ve actually seen the news reports of this story online, and there is nothing “aesthetically inappropriate” about the pole, in my humble opinion.

But let’s say, for the sake of argument, that Colonel Barfoot is completely in the wrong for keeping the flag pole up. One would think that this particular HOA, in the name of decency – and out of respect – would be willing to make an exception for him. It is very unlikely that anyone, save for board members, really have a problem with the flag pole in the first place.

It seems to me the association could have found a better way to handle this.

Clearly, the association is quite involved in the happenings of the community. Would it have been so unreasonable to allow Colonel Barfoot to keep his flag pole and then distribute a newsletter to residents explaining the special circumstances? How about holding a meeting of association residents for the sake of fielding opinions and gauging feedback on the matter? How about showing some basic human consideration for a man who, by almost anyone’s measure, damn well deserves the benefit of the doubt?

One thing I did get out of this story … this particular HOA apparently has no problems with dues being paid on time. They obviously had the cash to retain a law firm.

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Posted by Andrew Roman on September 12, 2009

New York City is as blue as blue can be – politically speaking.

In the very city that suffered the greatest destruction and loss of life during the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 there exists some of the greatest apathy toward the continuing War on Terror you’ll find anywhere. In the city where Obama t-shirts are sold on the corner like dirty-water hot dogs, anti-war buttons are as common as manhole covers, and a gigantic hole still exists where the twin towers used to stand,  conservatism is generally regarded with the same warmth as a painful inner ear infection.

Yet, there are places around the city where there still exist pockets of good old fashioned, unabashed, flag waving patriotism.

Here on Staten Island – the most conservative of New York’s five boroughs – on the front windows of the little market in my neighborhood are these two signs.

It truly did my heart good to see them.

patriotic sign

911 sign

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Posted by Andrew Roman on April 28, 2009


These photos (below) are almost two weeks old, I know. (My sense of timing is impeccable).

However, it is something worth revisiting, and certainly a moment in time worth sharing … again.

Without overstating it, the event was as marvelous as any I have ever attended – and easily one of the most inspiring. Despite talking head detractions from the media belt (those who actually covered it), the New York Tea Party was tremendously upbeat and positive. Indeed, it had all the earmarks of a well-attended demonstration – signs, loud voices, unbridaled energy and passionate speakers (including former Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich – but it was manifestly different than your run-of-the-mill, off-the-rack rally.

It was concretely patriotic and as unangry a rally as I’ve ever seen. In other words, it was not your typical, barefoot-in-the grass, leftist protest full of visceral attacks from frothing braindeads. It was not an event laced with archetypal negativity and hostility. Rather, it was an overwhelmingly boisterous, thunderous, uplifting gathering of people cheering and standing up for something they truly believe in – their country.

Let’s be clear … the thousands of us who attended the New York City Tea Party were unapologetically adamant, unwavering, loud and unrelenting in opposing the dangerous Obamacratic transformations taking place in the United States – but we knew why we were there, and we zealously spoke about what we were defending.

We were there to demonstrate that we were for the United States of America – not just aimlessly cackling against something.

There was no violence, no littering (this was no inauguration), no hatred, and no personal attacks.

It was decidedly UNliberal in every way.

It was an event that I pray will be only the stepping stone to a greater and far reaching movement of Americans who know that the traditions, institutions and values of this great republic are worth defending.

Not surprisingly, however, there was barely any national coverage of these modern day Tea Parties in the mainstream press. There was some scoffing by elitists, a fair amount of name calling by numbskulled Obamacrats (“right-wing nuts,” “extremists,” and even “racists,” as Janeane Garofalo called us), but the countrywide demonstrations went largely ignored.

I predicted as much.

By contrast, recall the sickening saturation given the handful of pro-Proposition 8 rallies across the country late last year after same-sex marriage was voted down in liberal California. To hear and see how it was being covered by the press, you’d have thought 250 million Americans had taken to the streets to feverishly support the redefinition of marriage.

It was not so. Not even close.

Compare that contrived media blitz to the scant coverage of Tea Parties held on April 15th – in all fifty states.

The sentiment and excitement stirred by what was, in fact, over 700 Tea Parties across the nation that day is worth looking at again, if only for a moment or two – if only to remind us that now, more than ever, Americans who give a damn cannot fall back on the barren ground of dumb complacency. The time is at hand to stand up for the founding principals that have defined the United States of America – and to do so before the likes of President Obama and his liberty-raping, government-expansive transformations become irreparable.

America is about liberty. America is about equality of opportunity. In America, the individual is left to his own devices to build and create whatever he desires.

Leftism, by contrat, is about equality – of outcome.

Liberty and equality are not – thank God – the same.

That I even have to make this statement is illustrative of how far from the Founders’ vision this nation has strayed.

It is the greatest anathema to the today’s leftist – the rugged individualist, fuelled by the liberty endowed by our Creator – that has built this nation. It is the God-given rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness that enable a free man to pursue and conquer his dreams, unfettered, without the heavy hand of the State holding him back.  That is what has made the United States the envy and beacon to the world.

America’s unparalleled greatness and unprecedented goodness have come in spite of its government – not because of it.

Like millions and millions of others, I do not want that to end.

I was privileged enough to participate in the New York City Tea Party on April 15th, just one man among thousands and thousands who turned out to jam Broadway by City Hall, in numbers I would not have believed were possible in such a blue city. We were there to show those who wish to tear down and redefine what America is that we will stand up for what we believe in and what is right.

Here are some pictures from deep within the electric crowd in lower Manhattan that day.















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