“Listen, my children and you shall hear
of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,
On the eighteenth of April, in Seventy-five.”
New England’s original "On the Road" man looms large in these parts --life-sized, in fact, in bronze, in Boston's North End. There, as well, you'll find his house preserved, just as his ride is preserved in the Longfellow poem.
“You know the rest. In the books you have read,
How the British Regulars fired and fled—“
At the original Marathon, 26 miles from Athens, Greece, free, Democratic, Western civilization faced and defeated the forces of absolutism. It is a battle that has been fought many times. It will be fought many more times. Freedom must always be prepared to fight just to be free.
On September 11, 2001, after the unprovoked terrorists attacks on thousands of innocent, unsuspecting civilians, President George W. Bush spoke of why we were attacked, and why we shall prevail: "America was targeted for attack because we're the brightest beacon for freedom and opportunity in the world. And no one will keep that light from shining."
Our patriot forefathers (and every America is a Son of Liberty, regardless of when your people came here) knew that freedom is worth fighting for. This Patriots' Day let's reflect on the cause of freedom, and thank the brave American men and women who, in every war from the Revolution to our current engagements in the Near and Middle East, have made it possible for us to enjoy this April 20th as a free people.