Rights can be wrongs

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 18, 2004

A Letter To The Editor took me to task for having an opinion that did not agree with the writer. That’s expected…it’s all but impossible to write a column for six years without stepping on someone’s toes now and then. It’s that person’s right to disagree and I wonder when the powers will do something about my rights? Perhaps the writer will not agree with these sentiments. Christmas is coming and we celebrate it. But because those of secular bent don’t, we should say only &uot;Season’s Greetings.&uot; It’s not Christmas vacation, it’s Winter Break…but it’s amazing how this winter break always comes over the Christmas holiday? The &uot;Politically correct’&uot; want me to go so far the other way, so as not to offend anyone, that I am being offended. But it seems no one has a problem with that.&uot;

I am ticked off about this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Americans. However, the dust from the attacks had barely settled when the politically correct faction began complaining about the possibility that our patriotism was offending others. I don’t lose any sleep over that.

I can honestly say I am not against immigration, and hold no grudge against anyone who is seeking a better life by coming to America.

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Our nation’s population is largely made up of descendants of immigrants. However, there are a few things that those who have recently come to our country, and apparently some born here, need to understand. This notion of America being a multicultural community has served only to dilute our sovereignty and our national identity. Like every country, we Americans have our own culture, our own society, our own language and our own lifestyle – the envy of some – a target for others.

Our culture has evolved over centuries of struggles, trials, and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom. We speak English, not Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, or any other language. Therefore, if immigrants really want to become part of our society they should learn the language!

And &uot;In God We Trust&uot; is our national motto. This is not some Christian right wing or left wing political slogan. America has adopted this motto because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded the nation and this is clearly documented. &uot;The Constitution which at any time exists, ’till changed by an explicit and authentic act of the whole People is sacredly obligatory upon all.&uot; — George Washington. It is appropriate to display &uot;IN God We Trust&uot; on the walls of our schools. If God offends someone there are countries besides America that will accept them …God is part of our culture. If stars and stripes offend any person, or they don’t like Uncle Sam, then they should pack up, or at least consider keeping their mouth shut.

We are happy with our culture and have no desire to change; we don’t care where people come from. This is our country, our land, and our lifestyle. Our First Amendment gives every citizen the right to express an opinion and we allow immigrants every opportunity to do so. But if they are complaining, whining, and griping about our flag, our pledge, our national motto, or our way of life, I recommend they take a hike…that’s another advantage of American freedom, the right to leave.

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So you will understand the French protest about Lance Armstrong winning their little bicycle race again, here are the facts:

Whereas the Europeans have to race over a course of

3,390 kilometers, Mr. Armstrong had to peddle only 2,119 miles.

To quench the terrible thirst from all the sweating (French riders perspire) Mr. Armstrong had to quench only about three gallons of water a day, while the local boys had to quaff (French for sip) over eleven liters of water a day.

They will probably overlook the obvious fact that the Americans at, say, 160

pounds, were racing against French people of exactly the same stature but tip the scales at less than 73 kilograms, a big advantage going up the mountains?

And about their price for souvenirs, you won’t believe…locals had to pay only 75 Euro dollars for one of those tight fitting yellow shirts while Americans had to fork over $100. And get this; key chains were selling for 10 Euro dollars, but to us Americans $13.40! Is that fair?

Robert Pocklington lives in Suffolk and is a regular News-Herald columnist. He can be reached at robert.pocklington@suffolknewsherald.com.