One of the supreme cases of setting examples occurred 243 years ago. It was when a group of patriots got a belly full of being over taxed, abused, and pushed around by an absentee government that was out of touch. Today many think the declaration of our independence was like flipping a light switch. The document was signed, some battles raged and we kicked the British out of our new country. No biggie.
Today our history is being diluted while others try to rewrite it and the reality is being buried. Nothing addresses the sacrifices made as well as a myriad of losses ranging from individual lives, those of loved ones, and personal wealth that devastated the future for many and much more.
The reality of our independence is that once established it took the United States of America years to preserve what had been won. That is one of the things about freedom and its preservation —it is a never-ending struggle plus battles are incessant.
The same thing occurred when Texas declared its independence from Mexico. The Battle at San Jacinto was not the last one fought. It continued throughout the time Texas was a Republic and even continued after she became the 28th state of the Union.
Many of the founding principles of the United States can be found in the Republic of Texas’ Constitution. It worked for and continues to serve as shinning examples for both.
Over all these years this country has struggled with threats from not only outside our borders but also from within. Sadly the deadliest war Americans ever fought was when we fought amongst ourselves. Records indicate the death toll from the Civil War totaled over 500,000 for both Union and Confederate. The war that claimed the second largest number of Americans was fought 76 years later. Just over 400,000 of the Greatest Generation lost their lives in World War II.
There have been other wars, plus wars that are still being fought. The tenacity to obtain and preserve freedom is one trait that makes America’s culture so attractive to so many. The sacrifices, contributions and assimilation into one unified body remains the envy of the world. When done right our country continues to be the shinning beacon for all others.
Collectively, we each set examples by which others observe, marvel, judge, critique and criticize. Many, if not most actions are without fanfare but make a lasting impression on someone.
Similarly in the outdoors we take great pride in perpetuating our time-honored heritage. A more simple way of life is embraced as well as a bit of respect for the struggle that results in measured success.
Even in something considered recreation there are battles that are raged. There are those that willingly take shortcuts, or more than is allowed, that provide the wrong example. There are instances when resources, so many willingly protect, are stolen by those with no regard for the majority. Sometimes these thieves live amongst us, while on other occasions our borders are breeched by foreign criminals that snatch and grab what they can, only to return to where they came.
Without unwavering support for the original principals that where written in the beginning we see an infiltration of ideas and values that run contrary to what make this country great. Those that preserve the examples of right are being vilified by a few that want to take us in an unacceptable direction.
Each time we do something, or say something we serve as an example. It is a responsibility we each bear and every day are actions are observed by many.
Until next month: Pursue all of your outdoor activities in a safe and ethical manner.