Every fourth of July I make sure I talk to my kids about why we’re celebrating. It generally starts with a brief history lesson on the Revolutionary War and our founding fathers, this is where my 15 year old daughter rolls her eyes and my 11 year old son fights to answer each question before I ask it. In hopes of keeping their attention and sending a message the conversation goes quickly through a brief American history lesson, the World Wars, Korea and Vietnam wars to the state of our country today. The modern day part of the conversation always starts with September 11, 2001, which is my generations day that will live in infamy.
We all new it deep inside that that day was going to change…everything. In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks we began to hear stories about why “they” hated us, and why America was bad. Islamic extremism grew into this Anti-American extremism that despised everything about us from our freedom of speech, to our freedom to worship and everything in between. It hates the materialism of the American culture thats not just talked about in some cafe in baghdad, Tehran or Cairo; it’s hate has come home and has clearly impacted our lives in ways we would have thought unimaginable on September 10th, 2011. At home we also have the uprising of the multi-cultural activist. Then there’s the leftist liberal part of America blaming the conservative right for all of the evils in the world, when just a year ago it was the right blaming the left.
Right or wrong, left or right we all know that we are all blessed to live in America, and freedom isn’t free. As a matter of fact there are young men and women far from home today making sure that our way of life is secure. Right or wrong, good decisions and bad, we are still the greatest country on the planet. America is still a beacon of hope, a true light in the darkness.
Every fourth of July I think back on the price that has been paid for us to live the way we do. I imagine the the young farmer and his family standing up to the redcoats, my grandfather and his stories of Normandy in World War 2, my uncles being drafted to fight in Vietnam, and the fight we have before us today.
In our fast paced world of unending differences between us I see a glimmer of hope from perhaps one of the most unsuspecting places, football.
In Texas on a Friday night we all gather to watch with great anticipation as our team takes the field. Suddenly the person beside you no matter if they are black or white, Christian or Islamic, gay or straight it suddenly doesn’t matter. I can also add from my experience that the boys on that team are not thinking about color of skin or socio-economic levels when they hit the field. Whoever would have thought that football might be a beacon of light that would bring us together like it does.
Last year at the Texas state championship games at Cowboys stadium is when this thought about football really hit me. As I was looking around during a particular celebration after a touchdown you could literally feel the hope. It was real, and tangible. People where gathered for a single purpose and the lines that divide us disappeared. I thought if we can do this for a game, we can do this for life…for America, because she deserves it. There has been a priced paid for America that many of us can’t even begin to comprehend. We have most definitely had moments in the history of our nation we wish we could change, but we can’t. But we can get better. We can have a respect for the price that was paid for us, and we can take a lesson from football and come together for a cause….for our way of life, for freedom, for America.
A Lesson From The Game
Next time you are at a high school football game take a moment to “take it all in.” Look around and take notice of what I’m talking about and let the lines that divide, come together to bind us to a cause that is much greater than all of us. If we can do this for a game in hopes of our team winning imagine what we can do if we come together for our country.
From all of us at TexasHSFootball.com we wish all of you and yours a very happy and safe Independence Day!