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Patriotic Article
Heroes and Patriots
By ITC Lee Crowson, USN

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Are You A Patriot?
(March 13, 2008)

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Today I ask a question again, "Are you a patriot?" Have you ever stopped to consider it? Do you really know what the word, patriot, means?

According to the word patriot is defined as follows:

Pa - tri - ot : noun 1. a person who loves, supports and defends his or her country and its interests with devotion 2. a person who regards himself or herself as a defender, esp. of individual rights, against presumed interference by the federal government.

  ITC Lee Crowson, USN
Let's explore these two ideas a little more, shall we?

Do you have to be a soldier willing to give your life in battle to be a patriot? No, you don't. Of course there are quite a few patriots who fill the ranks of our military but that doesn't mean that you can't love and defend your country in other ways. Do you support your military? By that I mean the men and women who serve. Do you vote? Do you do your best to live your life in accordance with the laws of this great country and try to teach your children to do the same? Do you hold this nation above all others? (If not, please feel free to immigrate to your favorite nation of choice.) There are many ways to "support and defend" that don't involve military service.

In regard to definition number two, do you think that means armed rebellion? Of course those who fought to create this great nation had to do that but that doesn't mean that is the only course, especially today. We have the power to change our government with our votes and our influence. Have you seen something the government has done wrong? Did you do anything about it? Did you tell someone? Did you write your Congressmen and women? Did you start or join a grass roots organization to stump for an issue? Did you vote for someone who you believe will right the wrong in question rather than the one who was involved but has been in Congress forever? If not, why not? Don't believe you can make a difference alone? Maybe, maybe not but if you pull together with those who share the same opinion you can move mountains.

Believe me a politician's first priority is to get elected followed very closely by the second which is to get reelected. Have you ever watched ants? They are amazing creatures that are capable of lifting and carrying many times their own size and weight. Yet even they sometimes find something to big to carry home for supper. So what do they do, give up? No, they bring over some of their buddies and either work together to carry the load or they split the load among them. Who said we can't learn something from nature?! We're all in this together. To paraphrase a founding father, if we don't all stand together we shall surely all hang separately.

Yes, I asked a lot of questions this time around and didn't provide that many answers. My job is not to give you the answers but to encourage you to think regardless of whether or not you agree with me. The questions are for you to answer for yourself and my answers may not be your answers. Find your answers and move your mountains.

Take care my friends and may God richly bless and protect you and your families until we speak again.

ITC Lee Crowson, USN
Copyright 2008

About Author:
Chief Crowson is an Information Systems Technician for the Navy Reserve who is currently serving on active duty at Commander, Navy Reserve Forces Command in New Orleans, LA. During his career in addition to his role as a communications operator he has functioned as an instructor for personnel entering the Navy Reserve with no prior military experience. His other duties included serving with Navy Coastal Warfare, a part of Navy Expeditionary Combat Command, and with Navy Expeditionary Logistics Group deploying both to the Middle East and to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

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