"If watching that game did not send shivers up your spine, make you stand a bit taller, make you feel a bit prouder, you might not have been watching the same game as I did."
I guess I have been writing quite a bit as of late about some of the nut balls who are trying to take this country off its tracks. The slow trickle of stories such of that has turned into more of a flood. But yesterday was something different. It was a strong shot in the arm of some much needed hope. What was it? A simple football game between two of the nation's finest military institutions. The Army-Navy game. Or was it just a football game?
It was a group of young men and women, some in their late teens, some in their early twenties, who excelled enough in academics and/or sports to be selected to attend West Point or Annapolis. These are simply some the best and the brightest lights this nation has. Then for one day in December, with everyone decked out in their dress uniforms, Army and Navy became rivals on the gridiron. For one day. Then once the game was over (yes, Army won again), all of these young people, who had been cheering for their respective service, were once again brothers and sisters in arms.
It was America as it should be. Nobody knelled during the anthem to protest our flag. Nobody was irreverent during the chaplain's wonderful prayer. Everyone was - well, respectful. President Trump was there, and was greeted with the cheers and respect which every American President should get.
But who are these young people? The ones about as American as a Norman Rockwell painting? They are the ones, if duty calls them to do so, who will have the responsibility to lead troops into battle. They will protect this country, our way of life, and our Constitution with every breath they breathe. Yes, if need be, they will lay down their lives to protect - us.
They did not have to choose the military. All of these young people were bright enough, accomplished enough, they could have done just about anything they wanted. But they chose this path. The path of service. Some will do their allotted time, and then leave for the civilian world. Some will stay for a career. A few will rise all the way to the top. Some will earn medals for bravery and valor on the battlefield. And a few may end up in either Walter Reed hospital or a federal cemetery.
I loved watching the game yesterday. I loved when the camera panned over the sold out crowds. Heck, even many of the commercials were service related, and done very well. Yes, I rooted for the Navy. I even got involved in some pre-game banter with friends who were Army fans. It is all good fun.
But who really won the game? Was it Army for the third year in a row? Yes, Army did rack up more points than Navy did. But who really won - was us. America. If watching that game did not send shivers up your spine, make you stand a bit taller, make you feel a bit prouder, you might not have been watching the same game as I did.
God bless these young people. May God bless and protect them and the men and women they will lead in peace as well as war. And most of all, may God continue to bless our wonderful country.