Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Today marks a very important anniversary in United States history. April 19th was the day which the battles of Lexington and Concord between American revolutionaries and British troops. That makes today, April 20th, the first full day which America was at war.
Reflect on that for a moment. Revolutions are usually marked with months and years of unease and anticipation then in a single crucial moment those who are brave step forward and declare that they are ready to hold fast no matter the consequences.
Revolutions, as we know, are not always violent. Look at the many democratic revolutions which took place in Eastern and Central Europe at the conclusion of the Cold War, while many died their revolutions were peaceful as they bravely stared down their oppressors. In the American colony Jefferson's logic, Paine's law, and Franklin's social commentaries were not enough - they needed Washington's military bravery before freedom was won.
April 20th of 1775 was not the day of the "shot heard 'round the world" but it was the critical day after. The day the American people committed themselves to the promise of freedom. The promise of freedom that may not have reached all people at once but in its promise has freed the peoples of the United States and many others around the world.
What does that promise mean to you? How are you reviving that promise everyday? What can be done to keep the flame of hope alive for those whose freedoms are mere memories and dreams?
You can comment and share. Please do!
Friday, April 16, 2010
Ut Prosim - That I May Serve
Let us just take one moment's pause to think and pray for those whose lives were plucked early at Virginia Tech three years ago.
Let us put aside politics, ideology and our differences to contemplate the tragedy and its consequences.
Let us remember those who were taken from us that horrific day:
- Ryan Clark (22), a senior in Psych/Biology/English from Martinez, Georgia
- Emily Hilscher (19), a freshman in Animal Sciences from Woodville, Virginia
- Liviu Librescu (76), a professor of Engineering and Holocaust survivor from Ploieşti, Romania
- Minal Panchal (26), a masters student in Architecture from Mumbai, India
- G. V. Loganathan (53), a professor of Engineering from Tamil Nadu, India
- Jarrett Lane (22), a senior in Civil Engineering from Narrows, Virginia
- Brian Bluhm (25), a masters student in Civil Engineering from Louisville, Kentucky
- Matthew Gwaltney (24), a masters student in Environmental Engineering from Chesterfield, Virginia
- Jeremy Herbstritt (27), a masters student in Civil Engineering from Bellefonte, Pennsylvania
- Partahi Lumbantoruan (34), a PhD student in Civil Engineering from Medan, Indonesia (Indonesian article)
- Daniel O'Neil (22), a masters student in Environmental Engineering from Lincoln, Rhode Island
- Juan Ortiz (26), a masters student in Civil Engineering from Bayamón, Puerto Rico
- Julia Pryde (23), a masters student in Biological Systems Engineering from Middletown, New Jersey
- Waleed Shaalan (32), a PhD student in Civil Engineering from Zagazig, Egypt
- Christopher James Bishop ("Jamie Bishop") (35), an instructor of German from Pine Mountain, Georgia
- Lauren McCain (20), a freshman in International Studies from Hampton, Virginia
- Michael Pohle Jr. (23), a senior in Biological Sciences from Flemington, New Jersey
- Maxine Turner (22), a senior in Chemical Engineering from Vienna, Virginia
- Nicole White (20), a junior in International Studies from Smithfield, Virginia
- Jocelyne Couture-Nowak (49), a professor of French from Nova Scotia, Canada
- Ross Alameddine (20), a sophomore in English/Business from Saugus, Massachusetts
- Austin Cloyd (18), a freshman in Int'l Studies/French from Champaign, Illinois
- Daniel Perez Cueva (21), a junior in International Studies from Woodbridge, Virginia/Peru
- Caitlin Hammaren (19), a sophomore in Int'l Studies/French from Westtown, New York
- Rachael Hill (18), a freshman in Biological Sciences from Richmond, Virginia
- Matthew La Porte (20), a sophomore in Political Science from Dumont, New Jersey
- Henry Lee (20), a freshman in Computer Engineering from Roanoke, Virginia/Vietnam
- Erin Peterson (18), a freshman in International Studies from Centreville, Virginia
- Mary Read (19), a freshman in Interdisciplinary Studies from Annandale, Virginia
- Reema Samaha (18), a freshman in Urban Planning from Centreville, Virginia
- Leslie Sherman (20), a junior in History/Int'l Studies from Springfield, Virginia
- Kevin Granata (45), a professor of Engineering from Toledo, Ohio