Tag Archives: George Washington

Movie Review- “America”

AMERICA_DesktopWidescreenThe creator of one of the highest-grossing documentaries in box-office history has paired once again with an Academy-Award-winning producer to bring another unsettling scenario to the big screen as we prepare to celebrate America’s 238th birthday.

Dinesh D’Souza (2016: Obama’s America) and Gerald Molen (Shindler’s List) present viewers with the question: What if the United States of America had never been? In fact, the movie’s subtitle invites us to “imagine the world without her.”

The film first faces the critics of America head-on by breaking down the arguments that the radical left has made against this country: it was founded on racism, genocide, oppression and theft. These beliefs are behind their desire to see the country get taken down a few pegs—to a point where we’re no longer a leader in the world. D’Souza interviews those who hold these beliefs (and have passed them onto younger generations), like Ward Churchill. He was a college professor best known for his disparaging remarks about the victims of 9/11 shortly after that event. Sitting through this portion of the film gave me some idea of what it must be like to be a conservative student on nearly any college campus today, where history, economics and pretty much any other subject are presented from the point of view of the left.

This was really a strong point of the movie. By setting up the fact there’s been an effort among many in our society who wish to undermine the American idea—and backing it up with interviews—D’Souza shows us that not everyone who lives here or who was born here loves it here. This is important to establish up front, as he then goes one by one, refuting each claim made against America. He does this quite well using news clips and more interviews that give the story of America the balance it deserves.

America isn’t just a series of news clips and sit-down interviews, however. Dramatic re-enactments are used effectively throughout the movie to bring moments in history, and those who made history, to life. We see General George Washington commanding his troops; President Abraham Lincoln giving his last speech before being gunned down by an assassin’s bullet; former slave-turned-abolitionist Frederick Douglass, and the experience of one Vietnam POW at the Hanoi Hilton.

D’Souza and co-director John Sullivan (2016: Obama’s America) are skilled storytellers, as they bring the audience into the past, all the while making connections to today. Anyone who may not be familiar with the teachings of Saul Alinsky will come away from this film with a better understanding of who he was and how his radical views have come full circle in the current occupant of the White House, as well as the woman who hopes to follow him (Hillary Clinton).

While watching America, you get a sense of how important it is to learn American history, and how much has already been lost due to revisionism. After all, you can’t really know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been. D’Souza maintains that America is now at a crossroads. As other generations have had to step up to preserve and protect the nation at various points in time, it’s now up to us to restore America. As he says in the film, “We need another Washington or Lincoln or Reagan…but we don’t have them. We have us.”

America is a feast for history lovers, but it’s also got a great soundtrack. Stay through the end credits and enjoy an uplifting—and rocking—new version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” by a group I’ve never heard of called Madison Rising. They call themselves “America’s most patriotic rock band” and it’s worth sticking around for a listen. You may even want to download it to accompany you on your Independence Day Weekend activities.

 

When Leaders Lead

Today is Veterans Day.  Some people may have this day off from work or from school, and as with any other holiday, retailers have found a way to make some extra money as we all (hopefully) take this day to thank those who serve—and have served— this great and very blessed nation.

Those currently serving in the armed forces need extra prayers these days.  It seems like their own government is preying on them rather than praying for them.  Their training and resources are being cut.  Those of the Christian faith are forbidden to share their faith with their fellow soldiers, and Obama’s war on the chaplains during the government shutdown was big news (on conservative news sites at least).  It’s ironic that the very people who are right now defending our rights to speak our minds are having their own rights curtailed.  They have to serve under a Commander in Chief who neither respects them, nor goes out of his way to boost their morale.  It was his administration who concocted the asinine motto, “leading from behind”.

It wasn’t always this way. There was a time when Commanders in Chief and other military leaders were men of honor…true patriots and people of faith who did hard things, even when it wasn’t popular.  Many of them led, not from behind, but from beside and even from below:  as in down on their knees, in prayer for those they were leading into battle, and for the wisdom they needed during turbulent times.  Here’s just a few, in their own words:

“The soldier, above all other men, is required to practice the greatest act of religious training—sacrifice.  In battle and in the face of danger and death, he discloses those divine attributes which his Maker gave when He created man in His own image.  No physical courage and no brute instinct can take the place of the Divine help which alone can sustain him.”- General Douglas Mac Arthur

“The fundamental basis of this nation’s laws was given to Moses on the Mount.  The fundamental basis of our Bill of Rights comes from the teachings we get from Exodus and Saint Matthew, from Isaiah and Saint Paul…if we don’t have a proper fundamental background, we will finally end up with a totalitarian government which does not believe in rights for anybody except the State!”-  Harry Truman, 33rd president

“Moral courage is the most valuable and usually the most absent characteristic in men.” – General George Patton

Peace fails when we forget what we stand for. It fails when we forget that our Republic is based on firm principles, principles that have real meaning, that with them, we are the last, best hope of man on Earth; without them, we’re little more than the crust of a continent. Peace also fails when we forget to bring to the bargaining table God’s first intellectual gift to man: common sense.” – Ronald Reagan, 40th president

Finally there was the Father of Our Country, President and General George Washington, who is portrayed in the famous painting in prayer at Valley Forge.  He said, “Let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”

It may be time to pray for another George Washington, but until such time that a strong Commander in Chief is raised up to lead our dedicated armed forces…may they be safe in whatever situation they find themselves in at the moment, and may they return to their families very soon…and if you happen to be a veteran, thank you for your service!

A leader prays for his nation.

A leader prays for his nation.

My Dad in the Air Force in Korea in the early 1950's

My Dad in the Air Force in Korea in the early 1950’s