Yesterday was President's Day. We used to celebrate George Washington's birthday on Feb. 22, the day he was born in 1732, and Lincoln's birthday on Feb. 12, until it was decided that it wasn't fitting to celebrate the births of specific dead, white, aristocrats one of whom just happened to earn the title of father of his country.
So now it's an aberration called President's Day, the third Monday in February, no specific presidents cited. For all we know we might be celebrating the presidents of General Motors or MSNBC.
This is all part of an attempt to cleanse our history of any taint of respect for the giants who wrested this country from the hands of a foreign monarchy and placed it in the hands of its people.
They committed the unforgivable sin of being mostly white and mostly property owners who put their faith and destinies in God and in themselves and not in a distant government. And in victory they opened their arms to the world's tired and poor — those huddled masses yearning to breathe free as the inscription on the Statue of Liberty later proclaimed.
When I was growing up, we were taught to pay homage to those who came before us and struggled in war and peace to preserve the heritage they bequeathed to us.
Nowadays our youngsters are advised to scorn their forebears as racists and unenlightened exploiters of the land and of the poor. They stand on the shoulders of giants whose very existence they are taught to deny.
No nation is without sin, and the United States is no exception. But no nation in all history has spent more, with the lives of its people and its treasure, on behalf of individual rights and freedom of its citizens and of all mankind than the United States of America.
The reaction of the American people to disasters that befall other nations is unmatched in all history. Let earthquakes or other natural disasters such as the tragedy in Haiti strike another nation and Americans are first on the scene, opening their hearts and their pocketbooks and their sinews to ease the suffering of strangers. And we seek nothing in return.
No nation in all history has shown more compassion for the downtrodden of the world, fought more wars to preserve the freedom of others, or given its treasure unselfishly to provide aid to those stricken by natural disasters than the United States of America.
God blessed America with the likes of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. Their birth dates deserve to be recognized individually. They deserve at least that from their heirs.
Phil Brennan writes for Newsmax.com. He is editor and publisher of Wednesday on the Web (www.pvbr.com) and was Washington columnist (Cato) for National Review magazine in the 1960s. He is a trustee of the Lincoln Heritage Institute and a member of the Association For Intelligence Officers. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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