After three months of being reminded in every major store that Christmas is on the way, after Black Friday and Cyber Monday and Christmas movies we wake up and declare in amazement that it’s hard to believe that Christmas is almost here. While we were being saturated with new toys for both child and man to the point of ad nausea, we were having to endure everything from declarations that Obamacare had collapsed and Iran would ultimately get their nuclear bomb while making America look like a paper lion. The spirit of the season took a beating and the cynic was alive in America.
This week I discovered that despite all the dire predictions and oversaturation of the season and attacks on the holiday traditions, Christmas is truly as alive today as it was when I was a child in rural North Louisiana. I came to this realization not from my radio playing Christmas Carols nor from the ringing bells at the Salvation Army kettles. The true spirit of Christmas was rediscovered in the eyes of my granddaughter. As I looked into those clear blue eyes twinkling as I looked at her, full of wonderment and joy and devoid of anything but good and happiness I realized that I had found the true spirit of Christmas. In these eyes I saw a child filled with the ideals that there is no bad in the world and the future is full of hope and optimism. Suddenly I realized that I was not only looking at a resurrection in my own belief of the Spirit of Christmas but was looking at the future or our country with a profound effect on the future of our world. So if you ever doubt that the spirit of Christmas is dead, that commercialism has ruined our view on the real meaning of the season or if political correctiveness is tarnishing our holiday spirit, look into the eyes of a child. The innocence will melt the heart of even the most cold hearted Grinch.
George Patton, WWII General that struck fear in the German Army, touted the spirit of the American athlete and compared this to the American soldier and explained that this desire to win was a reason that America would win the upcoming battles and ultimately the war. Our love for sports lifts entire communities to a point of euphoria with pride that a winning team provides. Conversely, the team is an extension of the community and what the community provides to the success of the team. In the Far North, hockey is played and revered by the towns that dot the forests of the frozen North. In the inner cities, basketball rules and the proof is found throughout our NBA. But when it comes to the Deep South, everything takes a back seat to our beloved Football. “When the going gets tough the tough get going” or “it’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog that matters” or “a chain is only as strong as its’ weakest link” are platitudes that explains lessons learned in football that carry on in life and helps to provide ongoing direction to a magnificent country. It’s amazing how a town or in our case a parish can be viewed and judged by a team’s success on the grid iron. And to witness this anomaly that is foreign to most living outside the borders of the United States, we need look no further than Union Parish High School.

  1. surpie1940 says:

    I do not know that Patton struck fear in the hearts of the German Army, but he did, in clear violations of the Geneva Conventions, execute by firing squads surrendered German Prisoners of War. Check out David Irving’s The War Between the Generals for the REAL history of the Allied conduct of warfare in Europe. The real atrocities of WW2 occurred due to the Allied terror bombing of German cities from 1944-1945.

    • Unfortunately there were atrocities on all sides and in all wars. The German army did keep a close watch on Patton and by keeping him in England with his phantom army the German high command was certain the Allies would invade at Calais. The point to be made about Patton was his comment that a main strength of the American fighting man was instilled into the soldier by virtue of competitive athletics. BTW, my mothers mother immigrated from
      Germany to the states in the early 1900s and my father’s father was a Federal Prosecutor and sent a letter to a federal senator protesting the actions of Patton slapping an American soldier and called for his removal.

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