Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Learn, Remember, Think

A famous saying attributed to George Santayna is "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" (in John Bartlett, comp., Familiar Quotations, 15th ed [1980], 703). I have heard it as follows: "Those who cannot remember the past are doomed to repeat it." The exact wording isn't important, but the lesson to be learned is vital!
Did we remember the lesson that we should have learned with Bill Clinton: smooth talkers don't always have the character to make good presidents. He was so good-looking and charismatic that I was convinced the first time I watched him on television that he would probably be elected president. He was so smooth! I was certain that women would flock to vote for him. Worse yet, he was voted in for a second term. We sure are slow learners!
Did we remember the lesson that we should have learned with Jimmy Carter: weak presidents who don't stand firm against our enemies endanger all Americans. During his one term in office - thank goodness he didn't get a second term - America had problems both at home and abroad. At home we suffered from unemployment (7.5%) and severe inflation (15% in 1980). He was trying so hard to run our lives that he was telling us at what temperature we could keep our thermostats. Abroad, Soviets invaded Afghanistan, revolutionaries deposed the shah of Iran and gave control of Iran to Ayatollahs. Hundreds of officials of the shah's government were put to death by firing squads. On November 4, 1979, revolutionaries seized the U.S. Embassy in Teheran and held many Americans as hostages in Iran for more than a year. Iran did not release the hostages until just before Ronald Reagan was sworn in as president on January 20, 1981. Iran was smart enough to know that Reagan wouldn't be a push over like Jimmy Carter. Carter is easily the worst president I've seen during my life time.
Did we remember the lesson that we should have learned with FDR: keep the government out of the marketplace and out of our lives as much as possible. FDR gave us the "New Deal," the "Second New Deal," and a second Bill of Rights (Cass R. Sunstein, The Second Bill of Rights: FDR's Unfinished Revolution and Why We Need It More Than Ever, (New York: Basic Books, 2006), 243, FDR apparently didn't consider "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" as enough rights. His second bill of rights included 1) the right to a useful job [Would employers be forced to hire unqualified people?]; 2) the right for farmers to make a descent living [Where is the incentive to work harder and smarter?]; 3) the right of businessmen to trade without unfair competition or monopolies [competition forces companies to become better or go broke]; 4) the right to a descent home [this worked out well with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, didn't it?]; 5) the right to adequate medical care [Medicare/Medicaid/Obamacare]; 6) the right to economic protection in old age [Social Security], sickness [Medicare], accident, and unemployment [unemployment benefits]; 7) the right to a good education [Are tax payers supposed to cover college educations too?] The irony is that FDR wanted to give all these rights, but took away the citizens' right to own gold.
When people feel entitled to things like jobs, clothing, recreation, homes, etc. they lose the incentive to work hard, save for, and care for property. There is something about having to invest time, money and/or sweat in something to really appreciate it and feel ownership for it.
It looks to me like we elected a smooth-talking president who has weakened our country against our enemies and is trying to totally control our lives. If our country survives this president, what do we need to do to elect a good president who will honor the Constitution, protect our liberties, and hold off our enemies? We need to learn the lessons of the past and then remember them. We need to do our own thinking rather than letting other people do it for us. Matthew 7:16 gives us a good key: "Ye shall know them by their fruits." What have the candidates actually done as opposed to what they are promising to do? What individuals and groups have been their associates in past months and years? What kind of votes did they cast at lower levels of government?
Remember, if we don't learn from the past, we are "condemned to repeat it."

If weather permits I'll be gone for a few days. I'm flying out to Montague Island to hunt for some Sitka black tail deer with my husband and a couple of good friends. I'll see you when I get back.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Patriot Shop

I have been looking for several years for a good book containing the history of the United States. I wanted a book that told our story in straight forward language. I wanted a book that told the truth about our history. Whether it is good, bad, or ugly, it is still our story.
I finally found a book - or rather a two-volume set - by an author that I think I can trust to give me the truth. The author is William J. Bennett who was Secretary of Education (1985-1988) during the administration of Ronald Reagan. He is an accomplished author having written about seventeen books, including The Book of Virtues and The Children's Book of Virtues.
This set of history books is titled America The Last Best Hope. By the time I finish these books, I hope to have a much better knowledge of what really happened in our nation. I found these books at a site online and thought they were a little high in price. I debated about getting them elsewhere. I decided that I might find them for less elsewhere but would purchase them from PatriotShop.US because I liked the mission of this site. The card that came with my order states, "Your support helps promote liberty and freedom - 100% of the proceeds from PatriotShop.US merchandise sales support our Mission of Service to America's Armed Services (visit for more information)."
This site has a lot of fun items such as cups, hats, shirts, books, etc. - all relating to the Constitution or the Armed Services. If you are searching for a special gift for military, you might find it at this site. It also has a lot of books that I thought sounded interesting. I recommend that you check out this site.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Counsel for Troubled Times

We all know that we are living in troubled times, and I suppose that we can all expect to be troubled economically. So how do we protect ourselves and our families in troubled times?
A speaker in our church today gave us some simple principles and counsel to survive tough times and to prepare for future difficulties. To protect him, I'll just call him Josh.
Josh told us that there are two principles we need to hold firm: 1) Seek the kingdom of God FIRST and 2) Keep the commandments of God.
Josh then quoted N. Eldon Tanner as giving the following counsel: 1) Pay an honest tithe and a generous fast offering; 2) Live on less than you earn; 3) Develop and live within a budget; 4) Teach financial responsibility to family members; 5) Show integrity by being honest in all your financial affairs.
Other counsel from Josh includes the following guidelines for making a budget: 50% basic operating needs, 30% housing, 10% emergency needs, 10% wise investments and home storage. He also counseled us to have a six-month cash reserve to carry us over difficult periods.
This is all good counsel. I'd like to add some ideas that I've gleaned through the years.
1. Examine your life to be sure you have done all that you can do to be worthy of God's help and prepare your heart to be worthy of receiving more help from God.
2. Search for the lesson that God wants you to learn from your current circumstances.
3. Remember that God has a plan for each of us, tailored specifically for each person, to polish and perfect us.
4. Look for someone else to help who may be in a worse situation that you are. This helps your circumstances to look better.
5. For those who are searching for work or attempting to upgrade their jobs, try doubling the amount paid for fast offerings.
6. I recently read some advice from our city telling our residents that we should all have enough food and supplies in our homes to meet the needs of our family members for five to seven days in case of an earthquake, etc. because it could take rescuers that long to reach everyone. I've also heard counsel that we should have enough food in our homes for family member for at least a month.
It is a common fact that families are the basic units of society. If the families in a community are strong, then the community is strong. When communities are strong, then the state is strong. When states are strong, then the nation is strong. It all begins with families. What can you do to help your family to grow stronger?

Saturday, September 26, 2009


I've been thinking about the many people who had an impact on the history of America and thought I might remind all of us of some of them. I had a difficult time deciding who I would review first so I'm going to start at the very beginning with Christopher Columbus.
According to William J. Bennett (America The Last Best Hope, Volume 1), Columbus was a "tall, red-haired sea captain from Genoa, Italy" (p 1). Since I have some tall, red-haired grandchildren and sons-in law with connections to Italy, this became an interesting fact to me.
As you probably know, Columbus received fame by sailing west across the Atlantic Ocean in search of a sea route to Asia. He did not find Asia but instead found the New World. Another interesting fact that I learned while studying about Columbus is that the scholars of that time period already knew that the world was a sphere. Way back when I was in school, we were taught that the people still believed that the earth was flat and if a person sailed far enough they could fall off the earth.
I also learned why the Europeans were searching for a sea route to Asia. It seems that the world that Columbus was born into was at war with the Ottoman Turks who conquered much of southeastern Europe and had made Constantinople (now known as Istanbul, Turkey) their capital in 1453. This became a problem for Europe because it cut off the European's access to Asia and the treasures there. It also meant that the Europeans had to choose between making a difficult and dangerous journey over land or go by sea around Africa or westward across the Atlantic. Columbus was only one of numerous sailors searching for a sea route (Marvin Lunenfeld, World Book Encyclopedia, 857).
Columbus sought financial aid from Spain's monarchs (Ferdinand and Isabella) over a period of several years and finally obtained funding in 1492. Ferdinand and Isabella were strong Catholics so Columbus' faith probably had an important appeal to them. His first name means "bearer of Christ" (Bennett, America, p 3).
As you know, he took three ships - the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria. He was captain of the Santa Maria while two Spanish brothers captained the other two ships. A month after the ships left Spain on August 3, 1492, the approximately ninety Spanish sailors became anxious about sailing for so long without finding land. The Italian captain kept stringing them along and not wanting them to know just how far they had traveled. "Threatened with mutiny by his crew, Columbus was forced to promise his captains on October 9 that if they failed to sight land within three days, they would all turn about and head back to Spain" (Bennett, America, p 4). Why did he choose three days? Was he guessing or had he received some inspiration? The sailors started seeing signs of land such as land based birds and coastal seaweed. Finally on October 12, 1492, the three ships landed on an island in the Caribbean Sea in what is now the West Indies. Columbus named the island San Salvador (Spanish for Holy Savior). Historians do not know which island Columbus landed on. Using their best guesses, they decided that Watling Island in the Bahamas was the most likely landing spot and renamed this island San Salvador in 1926 (Lunenfeld, World Book Encyclopedia, 860).
The Santa Maria crashed on a reef on Christmas Eve and broke apart. Columbus left part of his men in the New World to hunt for gold and took two ships back to Spain, arriving there on March 15, 1493. There he was honored by Ferdinand and Isabella at a great reception.
According to the World Book article, Columbus' impact on history was huge.
His search for a westward route to Asia changed European's ideas about the world and led to contact between Europe and America. This contact brought both good and bad results. Europeans brought many deadly diseases to America to which the Native Americans had no resistance. "...malaria, measles, smallpox, tetanus, typhus, etc. swept through the newly exposed population" and killed many. In return, Europeans became infected by a form of syphilis not previously known in Europe.
There was also an exchange of many foods, animals and plants. America provided cassava, cayenne, chocolate, hot peppers, paprika, peanuts, sweet potatoes, tomatoes and potatoes. Europe and Asia sent cattle, goats, honey bees, horses, pigs, sheep, wheat and many trees and plants.
The freedom-loving people of the Americas with their ideas of sharing leadership showed the European's a new kind of personal liberty to the Europeans. The new belief inspired by the Native Americans "became a basis for democratic revolutions against European monarchies and greatly influenced the structure of government in the United States" (p 864).
So, even if I started with Columbus who came to the Americas many years before the U.S. Constitution was written, we now learn that his voyage had much greater effect than simply discovering the New World, a discovery which was foretold about 592 B.C. by a prophet (1 Nephi 13:12).

Friday, September 25, 2009


Today I did some light reading and finished a novel for my book club called The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. The novel takes place in the time period immediately following World War II. It tells about the invasion and occupation of Guernsey Island by German troops. Guernsey Island is part of Great Britain and is located in the English Channel between France and the United Kingdom. When the Germans blitzed their way through Europe and conquered France, it was just a short hop to Guernsey Island, and the island was totally cut off from England. The Germans expected to be able to conquer Great Britain from their new base of operation on Guernsey Island. This novel gives the historical background of what happened during World War II and the shortages of food, clothes, soap, etc as well as other conditions and deprivations of the war. It also tells a fun story that I really enjoyed. I highly recommend the book. I like to read stories that are based in history because then I feel like I'm gaining some knowledge while being entertained.
This novel reminded me of how close France and England are. Then I remembered the classic Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens, an 1859 novel set in London and Paris. It depicts the period before and during the French Revolution which lasted from 1789 to 1799. This revolution, which began about the time the U.S. Constitution was ratified, introduced democratic ideals to France but did not make France a democracy. Prior to this revolution, European kings, nobles, and other groups were able to rule and reign as they saw fit. After the revolution they could no longer take their powers for granted or ignore the principles of liberty and equality for all their people.
I found it very interesting to learn that the French Revolution began with a governmental financial crisis, which then became a reform movement for radical change. It came about because the peasants and the working class of the cities were paying most of the taxes but were looked down upon socially. This group was clamoring for rights and wanted a written constitution.
Early in the revolution a crowd in Paris captured a royal fortress, and elected officials took over the government. King Louis XVI and his wife, Marie Antoinette, were killed. Thousands of people were killed in what is called the Reign of Terror. Napoleon Bonaparte, a French general, took control of the government and ended the revolution.
I told you a little about a book written by Saul Alinsky called Rules for Radicals in 1971. This book has been used for about forty years to indoctrinate many young people in the ways of revolution. The young adults of 1971 are now in their late thirties and forties and are taking their places as leaders in this underground revolution in our country.
Is it too late for us to stop this revolution in our country? I don't think so. One of the reasons that I think that we still have time is because polls still show that the majority of Americans consider themselves to be conservative even though progressives are slowly moving us away from the Constitution. We must stand up and defend the Constitution and demand that our elected representatives do also.
Our government does not have to do all things for us. It is only required to protect our God-given rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The government needs to stop trying to control our lives from birth to grave and get out of our way so we can pursue happiness.

Conservatives and Liberals

I visited a local library earlier this week and found a book called Rules for Radicals by Saul D. Alinsky (copyright 1971). This book is apparently a textbook for liberal/progressive, community organizer types like ACORN associates, Barack Obama, Black Panthers, etc. It gives the rules for "Have Nots" to organize and take the power from the "Haves" by using the existing "system" to form a revolution. I decided to check out the book just to see what is in it.
I was surprised to find a lot of quotes in the book by Jesus Christ, Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Payne, Tocqueville, etc. to justify his revolution against our system. The quote that surprised me the most was this one from Edmund Burke: "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing" (p 20).
I personally have heard this quote many times, but this is the first time I've heard it in reference to our Republican democracy under the U.S. Constitution as being "evil." To me this is a classic case of calling good evil and evil good. I realized that no matter what "side" we are on in any type of discussion, we can "slant" a quote to support our argument.
A lot of what I read was so twisted that I had a difficult time believing what I was reading. The author would go on for pages telling why the system needed to be overthrown because of its oppression. Then he would write a sentence or two about how the freedoms in our country would allow the quiet revolution to take place. Maybe the last part of the book will make more sense to me than what I've read.
I am happy to be able to say that I am not a progressive. I also agree with whoever said "liberals/progressives think differently than conservatives."
My question is are we born leaning either conservative or liberal/progressive or do we become whatever we are because of environment? If it is environment, how can I account for the fact that I have children that lean conservative as well as children who lean liberal? What causes the difference between someone who thinks "I am so grateful for my freedoms because I can do/become whatever I desire" and someone who thinks "They owe me" or even "we owe them" because of some unfairness somewhere? Is it "nature" or nurture?" Or could it be indoctrination by forces outside the home environment or some of each?
The bottom line is how do we teach the rising generation about the greatness of this country without turning them against the very things we are teaching them?
I love America! I know it is good! I believe that the closer our country is run by the inspired principles in the U.S. Constitution, the better our Republic will work. I believe that we need to go back to the Constitution instead of "progressing" away from it!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Constitution Site

Today I would like to share some information about an Internet site that I found recently. The site is The public launch of was on Constitution Day, September 17, 2007.
The information on this site is known as the Constitutional Sources Project. This project "is working to collect our national treasures and to make them more accessible to the American people via the Internet" as stated in a statement signed by Senators Harry Reid, Orrin G. Hatch, Sam Brownback, and Edward M. Kennedy.
This project was founded in "2005 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit to facilitate research, increase understanding, and encourage discussion of the U.S. Constitution by creating and maintaining the first, free, fully indexed, comprehensive online library of constitutional sources" (Executive Summary).
The reason that I am directing your attention to this site is because it has a Teacher Curriculum Center to provide resources to help teachers as they discuss topics related to the Constitution. The lesson plans are aligned with the standards of New York, Pennsylvania and Texas but hope to have all states represented later. The lesson plans could be easily adapted by teachers in other states. Lesson plans are being developed on civics, government, and history and are written for elementary, middle school or high school students with each level more advanced.
I looked at some of the curriculum and think that it could easily be adapted for parents to teach to their children in their homes. I saw some activities that could be part of family home evenings.
An example of what is available on the site is a satire entitled "Peter Prejudice: The New Breeches (April 15, 1788)." This satire was published by a Federalist during the time of ratification of the Constitution and illustrates the perspective of the Anti-Federalists. If you will remember, the Anti-Federalists were against ratification of the Constitution. They believed the new government would overpower the states because Article VI gave the federal government ultimate authority over the states. They also feared the new government was just an elected form of tyranny - and they had just won a war against a tyrant! The Anti-Federalists also insisted on a declaration of rights. We have them to thank for our Bill of Rights!
The satire is about a man who took his breeches to a tailor to be mended. Over a period of four months (the length of time the Constitutional Convention was in session), the tailor decided that the breeches were so rotten that they weren't worth mending (the delegates decided that the Articles of Confederation were not worth amending). The tailor returned the old breeches without mending them as well as a new pair of breeches made from the fabric provided by the man. The new breeches were a different pattern from the original, but the tailor assured the man that he could make adjustments in them. The man thought he had been insulted until his wife and children convinced him that the new pair was better.
This satire is a good way to illustrate what happened at the Constitutional Convention, which may help children and teenagers to better understand the argument between the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists. The main thing to understand is that the states sent delegates to the convention with authority to amend the Articles of Confederation. The Framers went far beyond their authority by designing a whole new government. They knew that the Constitution might not fit as it was written so they proposed Amendments to make it fit better.
I encourage you to check out to discover what it is and to see if it has anything that can help you to better teach your children about the Constitution and our Founding Fathers.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Writing this blog is good for me because it "forces" me to write something on a regular basis. In order to have something to write, I need to gather ideas, decide what I think about them, and then actually put my thoughts into words.
Today I've been thinking about the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists. The Federalists were those who wrote and supported the Constitution, which called for a strong central government. The Anti-Federalists opposed a strong central government.
The supporters recognized that the Constitution was a very important experiment in popular government. They knew that a vote against it in the state ratifying conventions could destroy it. They were particularly concerned about some of the more populated states, especially New York whose governor, George Clinton, opposed the Constitution.
There was good reason for the Federalists to be concerned: The Constitution was being attacked in the New York City press in a series of essays signed "Cato." These essays by "Cato" became The Anti-Federalist Papers. The Anti-Federalists had a number of concerns about this new kind of government. They were concerned that there was no bill of rights: there was nothing written to protect the individual. They were concerned that the states would lose sovereignty. They were concerned about direct taxation. Many charged that the Constitution was written by aristocratic men who just wanted more power. Some of the newspaper articles were about imagined horrors that would come about under the Constitution.
Alexander Hamilton could see that the essays by "Cato" were having some effects on the minds of the people. He decided to accept the challenge to win over his home state and began writing essays about the Constitution, explaining and defending it. He wrote under the pseudonym of "Publius," and his essays were also published in the New York City newspapers. They became The Federalist Papers.
Hamilton was joined in his endeavor by John Jay and James Madison. Between the three men, they eventually wrote eighty-five essays. John Jay penned five of The Federalist Papers, and Hamilton wrote most of the remaining eighty with some assistance from Madison.
The Constitution was signed on September 17, 1787. By January 9, 1788, five of the nine states necessary for ratification had approved the Constitution - Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, and Connecticut. There were some concerns about some of the states such as Massachusetts, New York, and Virginia and whether they would ratify.
Massachusetts ratified by a vote of 187-168 on February 6 after Federalists agreed to add amendments or a bill of rights. South Carolina accepted the Constitution in May. New Hampshire ratified in July to become the ninth state.
Virginia and then New York ratified within the next two months, thanks largely to the efforts of Madison and Hamilton in their home states. The margin between Federalists and Anti-Federalists in both states was very narrow. Hamilton thought that the majority of people in New York and maybe the entire country opposed the Constitution. The only thing that ensured a Federalist victory was the promise of amendments, ensuring the rights of the people and the states.
North Carolina and Rhode Island ratified after George Washington was inaugurated as our first president. Thus, we can see that the "battle" to establish our Constitution continued long after the Constitutional Convention was over. attributes this statement to W. E. Gladstone: "As the British Constitution is the most subtle organism which has proceeded from the womb and long gestation of progressive history, so the American Constitution is, so far as I can see, the most wonderful work ever struck off at a given time by the brain and purpose of man."
Is it any wonder, then, that we consider the United States Constitution to be divinely inspired?

Monday, September 21, 2009

Test on Constitution

I hope that you have gone to to print a copy of the United States Constitution. I also hope that you have read it a time or two. Here are some questions to see how much you are learning.

The Constitution creates what type of government?
a. A pure democracy
b. A Republican form of government
c. An aristocracy
d. An oligarchy

In the form of government expressed in the Declaration of Independence and defined by the Constitution, power flows:
a. From God to the elected officials, then to the people
b. From the elected officials to the people - God is not involved
c. From God to the people, then to the elected officials
d. From the people to the elected officials - God is not involved

The Constitution states that no person may be deprived of:
a. Life, liberty or the pursuit of happiness
b. Life, liberty or property
c. Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness or a decent education
d. Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, a decent education or reasonable housing has these questions plus twenty-two other questions as well as the answers. I suggest that you go to to take the whole test as well as to see how you did with the above questions.
I have my own copy of the Constitution and have read it several times. I found that I was guessing on numerous questions and realized that I need to spend more time studying the Constitution.
For the first 150 years our country was governed by our Constitution as it was ratified. Then presidents, Congress and the courts began usurping powers not given them by the Constitution. By doing so, they have taken away some of our liberties, which liberties we will probably never see again. An example would be the social security system. (I read somewhere that if Social Security had been in the Constitution when it was written, that the Constitution would not have been ratified because many people didn't want the government to collect lots of money just to disperse it!) Congress had no authority to begin Social Security, which is probably the largest Ponzi scheme in the nation where money is taken from the new "investors" to pay the old "investors." Now we have Medicare and Medicaid, both of which have branched off of Social Security. They are all so entrenched in our nation that no politician will be brave enough to even suggest that we do away with them even if they bankrupt our nation. Now Congress is trying to bring us a new health care system - which again they have no authority to do so.
We hear the Constitution, which is a rule of law, being referred to as a "Living Constitution," one that changes with the times and thus becomes a rule of man. The men who wrote the Constitution were good and wise men. They wanted the Constitution to stay relevant as the country grew. They wrote into the constitution the means by which it could be changed. They called these changes Amendments. Amendments have to be approved by two-thirds of the House and the Senate and ratified by three-fourths of the states. These changes are not easy to make and usually take several years. This is why presidents, Congress and the courts usurp authority that does not belong to them.
This is why we the people must know what is in the actual Constitution and why the Founders wrote it the way they did. We must have this necessary knowledge in order to pressure our elected officials and the courts to govern by the rule of law - the Constitution.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Pray for Our Nation

I'm being thinking about what I wrote yesterday concerning the duties of citizens in a nation blessed with a divinely inspired Constitution. All those listed duties are good - study the Constitution, be moral and religious, be involved, seek good and wise leaders, vote - and all are important for us to do.
As important as they all are, there is an even more crucial action for us. We need to pray for our country and ask for God's blessings upon us.
I believe that God preserved this land and held it in reserve until the time was right for the birth of the United States. I believe that God helped the colonists win and keep our independence. I believe that God raised up good and wise men for the purpose of writing our Constitution and establishing this nation as one that operates on the rule of law.
Believing all these things, how can I not believe that God is still watching over this nation?
We must pray for the leaders of our nation. We need to pray for them even more when we don't agree with their programs and policies. We need to pray that God will intervene, that he will enlighten their minds with better ideas, that He will help them to make good and wise decisions.
We need to pray for the men and women in the Armed Forces and all those who are daily putting their lives on the line for our safety, security, and liberty. We need to pray for their families that they might have peace of mind and know of our gratitude for the sacrifices they are making.
We need to pray for the citizens of this great nation. We need to pray that we the people will be vigilant in watching those who are running our nation and stay strong in our fight against tyranny. We need to pray to be able to discern the secret combinations whose only interests are profit and power and who are becoming embedded in government circles. We need to pray that we will stay moral and not become enticed to go over to the "dark side".
I believe that the most important single thing that we can do for our nation is to regularly and consistently ask God to protect us and strengthen us against evil.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Divinely Inspired Constitution (Part 3)

I am a firm believer that America is a promised land, which was divinely preserved and protected until the United States of America could be established. I firmly believe that God helped the colonists to become victorious over a larger, better trained, and better equipped British army. I also firmly believe that God raised up men and prepared them for the awesome task of writing the United States Constitution.
So, we have this marvelous, divinely-inspired Constitution with its checks and balances, separations of power, and other constitutional limitations. What is our responsibility as citizens of such a nation?
I believe that our first responsibility is to know what is contained in our Constitution. Since it is difficult to study a document until we have it, has made available to anyone all of our important national documents. Go to and print off a copy of the United States Constitution and start reading and studying it.
The second most important thing that all citizens should do is to preserve, protect, and sustain the supreme law of the land, which is our Constitution. We can do this best by being the kind of people that deserve a divinely-inspired Constitution. We must be obedient and moral people. attributes the following quote to John Adams, the second president of the United States, "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."
Third, citizens must be involved in the affairs of our nation. The best way to keep our constitutional way of life is to maintain a constant vigilance over those we have elected to represent us and our best interests. We need to watch with our eyes wide open, listen carefully, and even read between the lines in order to discern any corruption creeping into our government.
Fourth, citizens must actively search out good and wise man and women to be our elected leaders. Then we must support them but keep them honest in their duties.
Fifth, citizens must study the issues, ask the important questions, get the necessary answers, and know what the real issues are.
Sixth, citizens must actually go to the polls and vote. Unless good, honest, law-abiding people are making their voices heard, corrupt individuals will be elected.
Yes, we have inherited a democratic republic with a divinely-inspired Constitution. It is now our responsibility to hold onto it!

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Divinely Inspired Constitution (Part 2)

I was taught all my life that the United States Constitution was divinely inspired; however, I never understood exactly what this meant until I read an article by Dallin H. Oaks, lawyer, former law professor, and former justice of the Utah Supreme Court ("The Divinely Inspired Constitution," Ensign, February 1992, 68-74).
In his article Mr. Oaks asked the question "what is there in the text of the Constitution that is divinely inspired?" He then proceeded to explain his belief that the Constitution has five fundamental principles that were divinely inspired. The following quotes are from his article.
1. "Separation of powers … the inspiration on the idea of separation of powers came long before the United States Constitutional Convention. The inspiration in the convention was in its original and remarkably successful adaptation of the idea of separation of powers to the practical needs of a national government. The delegates found just the right combination to assure the integrity of each branch, appropriately checked and balanced with the others" (p 71).
2. "A written bill of rights. This second great fundamental came by amendment, but I think Americans all look upon the Bill of Rights as part of the inspired work of the Founding Fathers….
"I have always felt that the United States Constitution's closest approach to scriptural stature is in the phrasing of our Bill of Rights..." (p 71).
3. "Division of powers. Another inspired fundamental of the United States Constitution is in its federal system, which divides government powers between the nation and the various states. Unlike the inspired adaptations mentioned earlier, this division of sovereignty was unprecedented in theory or practice. In a day when it is fashionable to assume that the government has the power and means to right every wrong, we should remember that the United States Constitution limits the national government to the exercise of powers expressly granted to it… [see the Tenth Amendment].
"This principle of limited national powers… is one of the great fundamentals of the United States Constitution" (pp 71-72).
4. "Popular sovereignty. Perhaps the most important of the great fundamentals of the inspired Constitution is the principle of popular sovereignty. The people are the source of government power…. God gave the power to the people, and the people consented to a constitution that delegated certain powers to the government" (p 72).
Since the people hold the power, it is only right that the business of the nation be conducted according to the voice of the people.
A wise king the Book of Mormon, in trying to teach this principle to his people, said: "Now it is not common that the voice of the people desireth anything contrary to that which is right; but it is common for the lesser part of the people to desire that which is not right; therefore this shall ye observe and make it your law - to do your business by the voice of the people" (Mosiah 29:26).
5. "The rule of law and not of men. Further there is divine inspiration in the fundamental underlying premise of this whole constitutional order. All the blessings enjoyed under the United States Constitution are dependent upon the rule of law….
"…The self-control by which citizens subject themselves to law strengthens the freedom of all citizens and honors the divinely inspired Constitution" (p 73).
It is easy for me to see that the five fundamental principles as explained by Mr. Oaks are crucial to our nation. They explain very clearly why our nation has been able to remain strong for over 200 years as well as why other nations would use our Constitution for a model for their own governments.
With a proper understanding of these principles, we can judge better the importance of keeping our three branches of government - executive, legislative, and judicial - separate in order that the power is kept separate. If the power were to be concentrated in one branch, then our government would become more like a dictatorship than a democracy.
Without a written Bill of Rights, people would not be guaranteed any rights; therefore, they would lose their powers.
It is important to have a strong central government to defend us from other nations, to print our money, to collect taxes to pay our bills, etc, but it is also important that the majority of the powers remain in the states because the state governments are more responsive to the people.
If the power did not remain with the people, our leaders would soon become tyrants and dictators.
Without the rule of law, anarchy would reign.
Why would God reveal these principles to our Founding Fathers? He did so because He loves His children and wants them to have the freedoms necessary to use their God-given agency and to be happy.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Divinely Inspired Constitution (Part 1)

Today is Constitution Day. On this day in 1787 the Constitution of the United States was signed and established by Congress. The United States Constitution was the first written constitution in the whole world. It has served America well for more than 200 years and has also served as a pattern for the constitutions of almost every other nation in the world that has a written constitution.
How did the citizens of a brand new nation come up with such a powerful document as our Constitution? Where did they obtain the many ideas in it?
In a 1788 letter to Lafayette, George Washington wrote, "It appears to me, then, little short of a miracle that the delegates from so many different states (which states you know are also different from each other in their manners, circumstances, and prejudices) should unite in forming a system of national Government, so little liable to well-founded objections" (quoted by Dallin H. Oaks in "The Divinely Inspired Constitution," Ensign, Feb. 1992, 68). (Emphasis added.)
I too consider it to be a miracle! Consider the circumstances of our young nation. On October 19, 1781, under the leadership of General George Washington and assisted by France, America finally won the battle that ended the Revolutionary War. Great Britain with the mightiest professional army in the world had lost the war to an army made up almost completely of volunteers. Could this great success have come to pass without the help of God? I think not!
More trouble arose for our young nation over the next several years. America adopted the Articles of Confederation as a means of government, but these rules did not work very well. The rules said that Congress was in charge of the nation, but they didn't give Congress the necessary powers to do the job. Congress could not stop states from printing their own money or get them to help defend America or pay off the debts incurred by the Revolutionary War. Other nations saw our weaknesses and started to take advantage of us.
Congress saw the need to revise the Articles of Confederation and requested each of the thirteen states to send delegates to a Constitutional Convention to be held in Philadelphia. Twelve of the thirteen states were eventually represented.
On May 25, 1787, twenty-nine men gathered in Philadelphia. They elected George Washington to serve as president of the convention and then made the rules that the convention would follow. One of the rules called for absolute secrecy.
In time other delegates joined the first twenty-nine. Of the seventy-four appointed delegates, fifty-five participated in the convention and thirty-nine signed the final draft on September 17, 1787.
It was a miracle that the many delegates from the various areas of the country culd put aside their regional differences and loyalties to agree on a strong central government. One of the reasons for this success was the "intelligence, wisdom, and unselfishness of the delegates" (Oaks, Ensign, Feb. 1992).
The writing of the Constitution was only the first miracle. The ratification process was long and arduous and was finally completed ten months later. About three years later, the first ten amendments, which included the Bill of Rights, were ratified.
Modern-day scriptures tell us that we should live by the "laws and constitution of the people, which I have suffered to be established, and should be maintained for the rights and protections of all flesh, according to just and holy principles….
"And for this purpose have I established the Constitution of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose, and redeemed the land by the shedding of blood" (Doctrine and Covenants 101:77-80).
I believe very strongly that the United States Constitution was written by wise men who were raised up and prepared by God to write the document that would protect the liberties and freedoms of the citizens of this great nation and would also serve as a pattern for all other written constitutions the world over.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Letters to Editors

Today I wrote a letter to the editor of The Anchorage Daily News to thank the newspaper for finally printing an article about the latest outrage from ACORN (Conservatives rejoice at ACORN scandal 9-16-09). I pointed out that this news broke a week ago and that even the US Senate and the Census Bureau had taken action against ACORN before the mainstream media covered the story. I asked for the straight news while it is still news.
I encourage you to write letters to the editors of your local newspapers. Here are some suggested rules to follow:
1. Keep your letter civil and short (150-175 words at most).
2. Make one point using clear, plain English.
3. Keep your letter relevant by writing about a recent development in the news or something the newspaper covered.
4. Appear authoritative and rational and back up your argument using two or three solid facts.
5. Double space your letter and use proper punctuation and capitalization.
6. If possible, send your letter by e-mail.
7. If you must use the snail mail, keep your letter neat and use 8 1/2 by 11 inch paper.
8. Include your contact information, especially a daytime telephone number and e-mail address. Our newspaper requires hometown as well.
9. Write letters often. Our newspaper allows one letter per month.
10. Convince your friends to submit letters.
Please become involved in the political process. An easy way to get involved is to read, watch, or listen to the news and then let your voice be heard!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I Love America

I love America! I love the beauties of the land, the people, the freedoms and opportunities, the compassion for others, the rule of law, and many other reasons.
I love the "spacious skies," the "amber waves of grain," the "purple mountain majesties" and the "fruited plain" ("America the Beautiful").
I have had the opportunity to drive through many different areas of our country. I've seen landscape and people up close. I have traveled across the United States from the west coast to the eastern seaboard and from the northern border to the southern coast. Every region I've visited has a unique beauty to offer.
I love the mountains and the forests which cover the Northwest. I love the cacti and Joshua trees on the deserts of the Southwest. I love to drive through the flat lands of Kansas and the rolling hills of Missouri. I particularly love to watch the ocean waves crash upon the shores of Alaska, California, Florida, Hawaii, Texas and Virginia.
I thoroughly enjoyed visiting Washington, D.C. and seeing the great works of previous generations. I walked from memorial to memorial and from the Capital Building to the White House. There are many areas in the country that I still want to visit, but the areas I have visited are very beautiful.
I love the opportunities for choice and growth that America gives to us. As Americans we can choose where we want to live, what career we want to follow, and how we want to spend our free time. I particularly love the privilege to travel wherever I choose to go without the need to obtain permission to do so.
I love the standard of living that is available to our people. I love the fact that America provides a way for any of us to do and become anything we want to do or be. America is a place to prove this saying true: "Where there is a will, there is a way!"
I love the fact that the people of the United States have the right to choose those we want to lead our communities, states, and nation. I love the fact that after the votes are counted and a winner determined, there is a peaceful transfer of power from one administration to the next.
I love the fact that America is victorious in wars and yet does not claim the defeated territory as a conquest of war. I love the fact that the American people give millions and billions of dollars to help the poor and needy people of the earth and never ask for anything in return. I love the fact that we can conquer evil regimes and then reach out and help the vanquished people to rebuild.
I love to see the Stars and Stripes flying in the breeze. I thrill to see businesses and families flying the colors of our nation. I often feel as Francis Scott Key must have felt when he penned, "Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam, In full glory reflected now shines on the stream; `Tis the star-spangled banner! Oh, long may it wave O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave" ("The Star-Spangled Banner).
I love the fact that the power of this great nation lies in the people. I love America because I believe that its people are basically good. I believe that the majority of the people love God and country, are concerned about their neighbors, and generally want to do right. I love America!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Secret Combinations

Today I completed a routine cleaning of my kitchen stove and the hood over it. I scrubbed the entire hood including the screens for the fan. I scrubbed the back panel of the stove with all the knobs and buttons. I washed around and under the electric burners. I lifted the top of the stove to clean the area under the burners. This is routine cleaning which I usually do every month or sooner if needed. This time as I was cleaning under the top, I recognized that I had not cleaned for a very long time, perhaps never, the underneath of the lid. I had apparently never noticed that the underside of the stove top collected grease and dirt and therefore had not cleaned it. Today I saw the area in a different light and worked long and hard to get it clean and shining.
Just as I found a previously uncleaned area on my stove, I am beginning to see unclean areas in our local, state and federal governments that I have not previously noticed. Uncleanness in government is usually called corruption.
There are recent news reports about an organization known as ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) as counseling a "pimp" and a "prostitute" on how they could run an illegal business using under-age, illegal, undocumented girls and also how to avoid paying taxes on the business. ACORN has also been accused in about sixteen different states of voter fraud. ACORN has received $53 million of our tax payer dollars since 1994 to help poor people keep from losing their homes and to help them with tax problems. The current president of the United States, Barack Obama, has ties to ACORN. Is ACORN a legitimate organization or is it corrupt?
We have other organizations in our country that may or may not be considered corrupt, such as the Mafia, labor unions, the mainstream media who has failed to cover the ACORN news. How do we tell which organizations are "clean" and which ones are corrupt?
I believe that there is some corruption in our local area. We have a brand new mayor who was installed in July. He discovered soon after being sworn in that our city had a net worth deficit of $17 million. A few weeks later he added another $9 million to the deficit for this year plus $25 million expected for next year. My question is, how can a city of 300,000 to 350,000 people have a deficit of $50 million without some corruption somewhere?
Our former governor, Sarah Palin, brags about clearing out some of the "good ole boys" at the state level, and several of our state legislators have been indicted and convicted of illegal activities in recent years. Are there more?
Do we have legislators and administrators on the federal level who are supporting and abetting illegal activities? If we do, we would be wise to listen to the counsel given by an ancient prophet who lived about 400 A.D. He called corrupt organizations "secret combinations" and said that secret combinations are built up to obtain power and financial gain. He also said that whoever supports these secret combinations seeks to overthrown the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries. He told of two great nations who had been destroyed by secret combinations and then said, "whatsoever nation shall uphold such secret combinations, to get power and gain, until they shall spread over the nation, behold, they shall be destroyed" (Ether 8:22).
Are we going to root out and destroy the secret combinations among us and thus protect our liberties and freedoms? Our other choice is allow them to grow so powerful that they bring about our destruction. How about it America - what are we going to do? Live free or be destroyed? The choice is ours. I choose freedom!

Friday, September 11, 2009


Do the names Todd Beamer, Jeremy Glick, Tom Burnett, Mark Bingham, Lou Nacke, Rich Guadagno, CeeCee Ross-Lyles, Sandy Bradshaw, Elizabeth Wainio, Laura Grandcolas, Joseph Delus, Linda Gronland, Don Greene, and Andrew Garcia mean anything to you? Do any of these name sound at all familiar?
These are some of the heroes that were on United Flight 93 on September 11, 2001. If you will remember back to that day, you will remember that American Flight 11 hit the north tower of World Trade Center at 8:58 a.m. Just minutes later United Flight 175 hit the south tower, and American Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon.
United Flight 93 was carrying 37 passengers including 4 terrorists, pilot, co-pilot, and 5 flight attendants. It was 40 minutes late taking off from Newark on its flight to San Francisco, and these 40 minutes proved to be crucial. By the time the terrorists made their move to take over the flight, the first three flights had already hit their targets. Since the passengers on Flight 93 were allowed to make telephone calls, the passengers were able to glean useful information from their loved ones as well as to express their love, goodbyes, etc. From these calls our heroes were very much aware that three airliners had already hit the Twin Towers and the Pentagon.
When the heroes of Flight 93 realized that the terrorist-hijacked airliner was heading for Washington D.C., they assumed that they were heading for another national landmark and decided to attempt to take control of the aircraft. Among the group listed above, there were several who had enough aviation knowledge to fly the aircraft and to land it safely. They knew they could do it if they could wrest control of the airliner from the terrorists, but they also knew that they could die in the attempt.
Flight 93 was 15-20 minutes from Washington D.C. - apparently heading for the White House or the Capital Building - when it hit the ground at 10:03 a.m. Of the four aircraft that took off that morning with terrorists on board, Flight 93 is the only one that went down without killing anyone on the ground. It landed in a grassy meadow in a rural area in Pennsylvania southeast of Pittsburgh.
The heroes of Flight 93 were just a few of the heroes on 9-11. We know that there were many firemen who rushed into the towers to try to save lives but lost their own lives or health from the experience. We also know that policemen were among the First Responders that day. We know that there were many heroes that day and since.
Today I salute all the heroes who serve as policemen, firemen, military personnel, FBI, CIA, etc. who live and die to preserve and to protect our freedoms, our homes and our lives. I also honor the spouses, children, parents, siblings, etc. who support our heroes and allow them to do their jobs and to do them well. THANK YOU TO ALL THE HEROES!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

I Pledge Allegiance

This is my last opportunity to remind you to fly your United States flag tomorrow in memory of those who died when our nation was attacked on September 11, 2001. We must continue to remember how we felt on that day in order to stay strong in our battle against those who would destroy our nation!

Today I would like to discuss something that is sometimes irreverently referred to as "the pledge." I have a book entitled I Pledge Allegiance written by D. K. Webb. This book caused me to think very seriously about what it actually means to pledge allegiance to our flag. I highly recommend this book to everyone who wants to understand what we are really doing when we pledge allegiance to our flag. Many of the ideas contained in my post today were inspired by this book whose words are much more eloquent than mine.
Many years ago when I first started school, I was taught to pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America. I was taught to stand at attention facing the flag with my hand over my heart as I repeated the words of the Pledge audibly. At the time that I first memorized the words of the Pledge, I knew they were important, but I did not understand their meaning very well. Today I would like to explain a little of what these thirty-one words mean to me now.
I… The Pledge starts out with I, not we, meaning that it is very personal to each individual. The responsibility and the commitment start with me - one person. The strength of our nation begins with the strength of each individual.
I pledge… I give my personal commitment, my solemn vow, my promise.
I pledge allegiance… I personally make the promise that I will be loyal, devoted and faithful.
I pledge allegiance to the flag… The flag of the United States of America represents the united strength and integrity of our nation. It is our standard, our ensign to all other nations.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America… The word United means to stand together and to act as one. States are the individual areas of our country that fit together to form one country much as pieces of a puzzle fit together to make a picture. America is "the land of the free and the home of the brave." It is a great country because we the people stand together as one to protect and to preserve our own liberty and the freedom of all people wherever they may live. America is a divinely established and protected country, and it will remain free only as long as its people remain good.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic… I think that it is very important to remember that our nation is a democratic Republic and not simply a democracy. In both a democracy and a republic there is a government in which the people hold the power and there is a practice of equality of rights, opportunities and treatment. A democracy is a governing system where the rules are decided upon by a majority of the people. A republic is a governing system where the people elect representatives who then make the decisions that govern the people but who remain responsible to the people. Thus we have a democratic Republic.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands… I feel great love for my flag when I see it flying. I am particularly awestruck when I see it flying under less than desirable conditions. The photograph of the Stars and Stripes being hoisted by six marines atop Mount Suribachi on the island of Iwo Jima on February 23, 1945, always brings tears to my eyes. This flag symbolized the fact that American forces were on the spot.
I am also awestruck by the picture of the three brave firemen who raised Old Glory atop the rubble of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. This flag signaled the presence, strength, and unity of the American people all over our nation and throughout the world.
I remember the story of how our National Anthem, "The Star Spangled Banner" was written by Francis Scott Key on September 14, 1814. After spending a long sleepless night captive on an enemy ship and watching the "bombs bursting" in the air over the fort, when the sun finally came up he could see the "star spangled banner" still flying, and he rejoiced. The hymn that he wrote and that we all love describes his thoughts and feelings at that time.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands one nation… Our nation stretches for thousands of miles over many diverse landscapes. Our people are from many different nationalities, cultures, and creeds. Yet we are of one heart and one mind. We are one nation.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands one nation under God… Our nation was built on faith in God and religious freedom. Our Founding Fathers believed in God, and our people still believe in God. One of my favorite national hymns is "God Bless America." May we always remember Him and be blessed by Him!
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands one nation under God indivisible… Our Founding Fathers took much time and made much effort to establish the Constitution of the United States. This Constitution brought our nation together, and it has helped to keep our nation undivided for more than 200 years. We are one people standing together against all enemies.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands one nation under God indivisible with liberty… Liberty has been defined as freedom from slavery, imprisonment, captivity, etc. Freedom has been defined as independence. The laws of our land support and defend the freedom, independence, and liberty bestowed upon us by God.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands one nation under God indivisible with liberty and justice… Justice as has been defined as the use of authority and power to uphold what is lawful, just or right or a reward or penalty as deserved. There can be no mercy without justice. When a law has been broken, a penalty must be paid by someone or justice cannot be served.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands one nation under God indivisible with liberty and justice for all… The pledge begins with I, the individual, and ends with liberty and justice for all. I act as an individual on behalf of all people. I go to the voting booth to cast my ballot. I keep my representatives informed about what principles and ideals are important to me.
I am only one, and you are only one. Together we become "we the people," citizens of the greatest, most powerful, and most compassionate nation on earth. We are Americans who desire liberty and justice for ALL people.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The American Flag

I believe that one of the most important things we can do as Americans is to fly the United States flag. I encourage you to fly your flag every day if at all possible but especially on important days like September 11. Today I thought I would share a little of the history of the flag as well as the proper way to fly it.
The American flag has represented the integrity, strength and unity of America for over 200 years. Betsy Ross claimed the distinction of making the first American flag.
The Continental Congress passed the first Flag Act on June 14, 1777, to establish the nation's official flag: "Resolved, that the flag of the United States be made of thirteen stripes, alternating red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation."
The design of the official flag has been changed several times since 1777. The United States flag today has thirteen horizontal stripes, seven red stripes alternating with six white stripes. The stripes represent the thirteen original colonies while the stars represent the fifty states of the Union. There is symbolism in the colors also: Red stands for Hardiness and Valor, White symbolizes Purity and Innocence, and Blue represents Vigilance, Perseverance, and Justice.
There is certain etiquette that should be used when dealing with the American flag. The following guidelines come from the Flag Code:
. The flag should be lighted at all times, either by sunlight or other appropriate lighting.
. The flag should be flown in fair weather unless the flag is designed for other kinds of weather.
. The flag should never be used for any decoration in general.
. The flag should never be used for advertising purposes.
. The flag should not be part of a costume or athletic uniform. The only exception is that a flag patch may be used on the uniform of military personnel, police and fire personnel, and members of patriotic organizations.
. The flag should never be flown upside down except as a distress signal.
. The flag should never be allowed to touch the ground.
. The flag should be cleaned and mended when necessary.
. When a flag is no longer fit to represent our nation, it should be destroyed by burning in a dignified manner.

Note: This information is a small part of the history, etiquette, and protocol of the United States flag available at

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Remember September 11, 2001

What were you doing eight years ago when you first heard that an airplane had hit the tower in New York City?
I remember well what I was doing. I was up very early in the morning in order to teach a class of teenagers at our church before they went to public high school. I remember that I was in my teenage daughter's bedroom braiding her hair when an announcement came over the radio that an airplane had hit the first tower. I assumed that a private aircraft had strayed from the flight pattern and had hit the tower by accident.
Just then the announcement was made that a second airplane had hit the second tower. Without knowing anything else, I immediately recognized that our country was under attack. Only later did I understand that the airplanes involved were airliners.
My thoughts went to my daughter-in-law who was on a red-eye flight from Anchorage, Alaska, to Salt Lake City, Utah. What was happening to her? I was very grateful when she called soon after landing to let us know that she was okay.
I remember watching with horror as we learned of a third airplane hitting the Pentagon and a fourth going down in a field in Pennsylvania. I remember the scare that we had right here in Anchorage when we thought that a hijacked aircraft was heading for our city and the relief when that aircraft was diverted to another airport in Canada.
I remember feeling the need to fly my United States flag and feeling as one with my friends and neighbors who were also flying their flags. I remember being comforted by seeing the beautiful red, white and blue Stars and Stripes flying.
I remember the stillness of the day when no airplanes were flying over our city. I remember that it was hunting season and under normal circumstances there would have been many small aircraft flying. I remember driving to our local seaplane base to retrieve some items that my husband needed from our own float plane. I remember how very much alone I felt driving around the lake and seeing no other human beings in an area that is usually very busy.
I remember the day that terrorists came into our nation and did their best to destroy our country. I remember every time that I go through security at an airport that I now must partially undress and submit to any searching needed because of those terrorists. I remember why I have to submit to those changes and I remember who caused those changes.
I am determined to keep the memories of September 11, 2001, bright and never forget that approximately 3000 Americans lost their lives that day and that their friends and families still suffer from the loss of their loved ones.
I will be flying my flag on September 11, 2009, in memory of the day that evil men attacked our nation. Will you join me and help turn our nation red, white and blue once again by flying your American flag on that day?

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Power of One

How many times have you heard of a serious problem in your neighborhood or city and thought "someone needs to do something?" How often have you read about items or events of state or national interest and asked "what can be done?"
As I have listened to, read about, and observed the massive changes being made in the way my country is being governed, I have become very concerned for my grandchildren and what kind of country they will inherit. I envision one or more of these sweet little children asking me questions, such as: What were you doing that was more important than protecting my liberty? What did you do to encourage the politicians to limit the size of our government? What did you do to stop Congress from incurring so much debt - debt that my generation is forced to repay? What were you thinking?
I decided that I must do something, but I wondered what I could do. I am very aware that I am only one average, law-abiding, freedom-loving person. I remembered reading or hearing a poem about "I am only one" and found a couple of very similar ones written by different people on a blog called "Jetting through Life." The basic thought of both these poems is that I may be only one person and cannot do everything but I can do something.
I began to realize that there are many things that I can do that can make a difference, at least in the small circle of my influence. I realized that I can be a positive force for good to those who matter most to me. I started this blog with the hope that I can be a good positive influence by telling of actions that one solitary person or one family can do to help preserve and protect our liberties and to keep our country strong.
How about you? You are only one person. You can do something to be a positive influence to those who know you. What will you do?

Sunday, September 6, 2009


               I am an average, ordinary woman who happens to be the mother of six wonderful adult children and twelve adorable grandchildren.  I had the opportunity to have a happy and carefree childhood as well as a fairly easy and happy adulthood.  I want the same for my children and grandchildren.  One of my greatest desires is to leave for my children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc. the same freedoms and opportunities that I enjoy.
               I feel much as Thomas Paine must have felt when he penned the words, "If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace" (The American Crisis, No. 1, December 19, 1776, as quoted at
               I feel great concern as I watch the television broadcasts and read the newspapers.  I spend a lot of time reading and studying, trying to educate myself about what is happening now as well as what our Founding Fathers wrote and why they wrote it.
               I feel the need to become engaged in the cause of liberty, which I consider to be holding onto the Constitution of the United States and keeping our Republic free.  I feel that through my life experiences as well as through my study, I have ideas that can help others appreciate the great nation that we live in as well as protect and preserve the Constitution of the United States as our Founding Fathers intended it to be.  It is for this reason alone that I started this blog.