United country best hope for republic's survival

info@islandpacket.comDecember 2, 2012 

My black Friday was not spent at Walmart, but at the Andersonville prison and National Prisoner of War Museum in Georgia. My response to the horrific stories of Andersonville was somberness and reflection.

Our history was a loose confederation of states that did not work. A stronger central government was necessary if our republic was to survive. Protecting the rights of states and creating a stronger national government was a daunting task. Unfortunately, our new government permitted slavery, the most horrific aspect of our Constitution and the reason for the civil war. I reflected on the 14th Amendment. We are citizens of America first and no state shall "abridge the privileges and immunities of citizens of the United States." The differences of opinion between the 10th and 14th amendments will continue, but as a nation we have the mechanism to come to rational decisions.

My mood of somberness continued as I visited the National Prisoner of War Museum. The stories of terror that American soldiers faced was horrific. Emotionally drained, I realized all those war heroes were defending and fighting for the United States of America, not their own individual states.

My final reaction was one of bewilderment. I was thinking about all the individuals who are signing secession petitions. I was wondering who they are. What are their values, and what do they believe? Do they know any aspect of American history? I firmly believe they are showing disrespect to the veterans who served in the military defending the U.S.A.

Joseph Anastasia

Bluffton

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