Today was Interdependence Day in the United States. The day has been filled picnics and friends gathering. Traditions of celebration. I spent the day watching the military parade with my dad who is a former marine and Vietnam veteran. Dad isn’t really a fan of war as much as he is a connoisseur of the machines. With the sound off and his eyes fixed on the screen he gave his own account if each aircraft as they passed over. He knows all the stats and capabilities. A few he had actually flown in. With his voice cracking he recounted the day he witnessed two helicopters get too close during a training exercise and go down with 14 of his fellow marines on board. The next plane to fly over was one that a childhood friend of his had piloted and gotten in trouble for a low altitude flyover of their hometown.
That’s when the Eisenhower quote in tonight’s feature image came to mind. The pilot had taken a risk as an expression of his freedom. As I began to contemplate the words I thought of my own life experiences. I have never served in the armed forces but I have expressed my freedom with risks. Leaping into the lake from 60 foot high cliffs is an example that actually came up in a recent conversation. Strapping on a large knife and exploring the forest alone at the age of 11 years. There’s are bears and venomous snakes in the area. Any number of accidents could have happened. But without those risks I could not have become the person that I am today. I would have never developed my love of nature or learned to sit quietly and think about the deep questions. The only way that could have happened was being allowed to have the freedom to take the risks.
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