Or an abiding sense of things that transcend our dulled senses? A video is making the rounds this morning, which prompts a bit of unbidden clarity from my heat-addled brain pan.
66 years ago this morning, young men “stormed” the beaches of Normandy, if sheer numbers be a reckoning of men as agents of the Furies. We have no concept, no frame of reference for that sort of sacrifice until we are called to it. What mere mortal man would you follow into a place like that? What trifle of flesh and blood, no matter how strong, would induce a young man to go against all self-preserving instinct three thousand miles from peaceful home, unless it be a Word, an Idea, a Something that is greater?
I don’t care if you don’t believe in something greater, you’re a beneficiary of those who do. Today would be a good day, Europe, to return to your better angels, or at least remember the ones who gave all in that extravagant sacrifice for Something your leaders no longer believe in. A good day for Americans to hold fast to that which remains.
God bless a Marine with a great voice and an even greater heart:
The fourth verse of our National Anthem:
Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!