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Charles Burdick

Charles Burdick

So what is it that makes America so great?

The major thing that makes America great is the Constitution, with the Bill of Rights. We also have states' rights. Within the range of guaranteed rights is freedom of religion, voting rights, freedom of speech and opportunities of many.

God has truly blessed America. Just read the preamble of the Constitution:

“We, the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

Recently, I have become irritated and saddened hearing and seeing the phrase “Make America Great Again.” You see this on posters and signs at political rallies. This is saying that America had stopped being great and we must overcome this and make it great again.

I’m here to tell you that it has never, in my 86 years, stopped being great and still is. We have seen some low periods in our country, but this has not stopped it from being great. Had it not been great, we would not have overcome some of our lowest events.

Our teachings have taught us to show respect for the president of our country. But I have always believed that to get respect, you must show respect and our president has not met this denominator. He makes disparaging remarks about people and tells the story in a manner he thinks makes him look superior over other people. He stretches the truth about many things when he should know that people know better.

How can I show respect for a man that is obsessed with making untrue statements?

This is the same man that has a friendly relation with two of our enemies, Russia’s Vladamir Putin and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un. This, of course, is not all bad, but questionable

A veteran spoke to me and said, “I saw some rough times while serving in the U.S. Army in Korea. I always felt that my sacrifice was for the greatest country in the world, and still do. But now I hear that it stopped being great and we must make it great again. Was all our bloodshed in vain?”

I tried to explain that maybe this phrase was being used out of context, but he stopped me by saying, “the blood that ran from my fellow soldiers had nothing to do with, out of context."

Knowing he was right, I said no more. He asked me not to use his name. I have no idea as to how many more people feel the way this veteran just mentioned, but I suspect many agree.

As long as our country, the majestic United States of America, exists and its history is told, it will never be necessary to make it great again. History dictates and shows our everlasting devotion and this will be feared by our enemies. Its strength is in our rights and freedoms and this will always keep us safe.

The future of this great nation is contained in its Constitution and the will of its people. My hope remains that our leaders' minds will not be clouded when dealing with rogue nations. I can only suggest to them this: “Let not darkness of night cloud your mind, for morning will bring light.”

In closing, I say let's “Keep America Great.” Forget Make America Great Again, for it has never stopped being great.

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Charles F. Burdick is a lifelong resident of Grand Tower. After graduating from high school, he joined the U.S. Navy and then went on to a 42-year Maritime career including 35 years as Master Pilot. He has been retired for 23 years and enjoys local history and writing poetry.

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