Pride Overflowing

September 11, 2001, is a day that I will never forget. To borrow a few words from Pearl Harbor, this was “a day that will live in infamy.” Will all due respect to the victims of Pearl Harbor, I feel that this is the worst tragedy ever for Americans. This morning I heard a report that stated the death toll could reach up to 30,000. Pearl Harbor pales in comparison.

Now to the bigger issue. As a teenager growing up, I did not like my country very much. Then again, I guess that I was ignorant to the fact that I lived in the greatest country in the world. I realize this now, and I will do anything to honor, respect and defend the United States and the principles that it was built upon.

Two and a half years ago, I made what has turned out to be the best decision in my life. I enlisted in the United States military, the NC Air National Guard to be exact. Some people say to me, “Oh, you are just a puny guardsman.” I say to those people, “I took the same oath that every man before myself has taken, the oath that says I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of those appointed over me. The oath that I took also says that I will defend my country against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”

Being in the military for over two years now, this is not something that I have had to deal with, but I would be honored to get that call from my commander saying, “Let’s go. We going to defend our great land.” This would truly be an honor to this airman.

As little as it is worth, it makes me feel incredible pride in my country to see how so many people can pull together for a common cause after such a horrendous tragedyhas taken place. Yet, we, as United States citizens, don’t see the wrong in each other right now. We see everyone as the same; we see each other as Americans.

As I watched the events unfold Tuesday, my feelings turned from that of shock and disbelief to those that our livelihood, thoughts and beliefs had been attacked. President Bush said it best, “Freedom, itself, has been attacked.” And I for one and ready to help defend it.

Dane Horne