Kids should be aware of our history

Published 11:59 pm Friday, November 27, 2009

Dear Editor,

I had a birthday this month and I realized that a lot of things that were important to me as a child and I sometimes took for granted were still important to me now. These are things like freedom of speech, freedom of expression, freedom of choice and to be able to enjoy the traditions of my family and my country such as Christmas without being harassed.

For those of you who do not celebrate Christmas, I respect you for that. However, the door swings both ways. For example, a while back The Sons and Daughters of the Confederacy in Florida bought one of the largest flying Confederate flags ever flown and erected it on private property that just happened to be at the intersection of all the main interstates in that area. Without saying a word, this flag offended people who started becoming outraged about it. No one made them help buy it, they were not made to salute it, wave at it, or respect it. Heck, they didn’t even have to look up if they didn’t want to; just put the visor down and go on about your merry way — sorry, “happy” way — Merry would refer to Christmas.

At the same time we begin to see different signs naming our highways. As I travel down these highways, bypasses, interstates, streets and boulevards named after Martin Luther King Jr., I realize I am in the same position as those who were outraged about the flag. I have a choice. I can respect it as a part of showing our history, or I could become irate and rant and rave as I have seen a lot of people do.

Now, neither of these offend me, because they both are a vital part of American history, and without our history we are nothing. Perhaps people need to have a check-up from the neck up!

Instead of getting all bent out of shape, take this as an opportunity to educate your children and grandchildren of American history and how the families of all races played an important part, and how things have changed and how we all should take pride in our country.

Parents and grandparents, perhaps you need to start paying more attention to the young people in your life. Talk to them. Now, more than ever, children need a strong support system, because as you know, there are a lot of powerful, deceiving parasites out there just waiting to entice, induct, recruit and take our children and change their belief systems into something different than yours and mine. Talk to your children over these coming holidays; explain dangers, temptations, truth, safety, drugs, disease, anything you can think of that someone else could be talking to your children about. And if you don’t, these children will think you don’t care and you don’t understand because you never told them. And you know why they will feel that way? Because the parasites will be telling them this, when you are not around.

Remember danger doesn’t have to be looking you in the face. It comes in many forms now — videos, cell phones with cameras, Web sites, Facebook, the whole Internet thing. Your kids can find anything and will find anything, because usually they know more about computers than you do. But, remember, you know more about what’s on the computers than they do. Check their logs. See what they look at. And then talk about it. Not shout, not yell, not “because I said so,” not “you’re stupid,” not “wait till your daddy gets home,” not “what will so and so think about you.” Rather, just have honest one-on-one talk.

I believe there are forces at work in our country to try and tear us all apart and alienate ourselves so we become vulnerable. The more we stand together the stronger we will become. And I am a firm believer that evil just doesn’t have to try as hard as good.

Janet Ezell Beesley

Red Level