Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Heroes in the Modern Day

We respectfully ask that you read the entire post before commenting the first time, but for your convenience we have put a jump to the comments section right here, so that you can easily find them.

This week we are going to try something different, we are going to start to ask guest writters to submit posts for concideration at the BoP, to help open up the discussion for everyone. Our first is Kevin from Wizards Woodshed. Hope you like the change.


First I would like to thank Zaph for inviting me to contribute to the BoP. I enjoy reading it every week, and commenting when time allows.

On (Sunday as I wrote) this of all days, as we remember the fallen in the aftermath of the cowardly attack on 911, I paused to think not only of the victims, but also the heroes of that day.

When we say the word "hero" our minds generally evoke images of the firefighters, police, and rescue workers that serve their community each day, laying their lives on the line for what is truly a pittance of a salary. Or perhaps the image you see is that of the American serviceman or woman, true to their oath and defending our country. In light of the recent tragedy in our southern states your vision of a hero might be the volunteers that drop everything to travel to a devastated area and render aid. In all of the above you would be correct. Each and every one of these representations qualifies as a hero in my book. Blessings and prayers to all of those who fit the above examples. Your courage and willingness to give of yourselves to your brothers and sisters of the human race deserve nothing but the highest praise!

I would like to take our view past the obvious and pay homage to those that might not be the first to come to mind as we think of "heroes".

The passengers and crew of flight 93, the first to make a stand against the 911 terror attack, earned the title with their actions on that fateful day. These ordinary men and women made a stand against armed assailants in a desperate effort to save their fellow passengers. In doing so, they also averted another disaster planned by their attackers.

In the case of Katrina, hats off to those hurricane victims who risked their lives to help others trapped by the storm and the floods. Every time I see the footage of the people pulling boats with other survivors to safety and out of harms way, I see a hero.

Once again, ordinary people becoming extraordinary people in a situation that is anything but ordinary.

You, the reader and contributor to the blogosphere, giving your opinions, your expertise, your knowledge, and most importantly-YOUR VOICE! Right or left, republican or democrat, cranky liberal (gun toting or otherwise*lol*) or staunch conservative, your voice is heard and probably by a lot more people than you realize. Environmentalist wacko, conspiracy theorist, right-wing nut job, or conservative cretin, it is your voice that brings to light issues of the modern day. It is your voice that holds accountable those in power that abuse it. It is your voice that draws attention to the issues facing our society and keeps the attention there until it can speak for itself. YOU have become the watchdog of justice that the media was once toted to be.

Heroes.

Ordinary people becoming extraordinary people in a situation that is anything but ordinary.

So take your stand hero, fight the good fight and make your voice heard. I’m listening

Kevin - Wizards Woodshed


First, welcome to my husband as a guest post of BoP! I know that right now busyness keeps him much and so I honor that he took the time to write something here for us, definitely something that causes us all to look not only around us at a world filled with heroes but also challenges us all to look at what kind of hero are we? What kind could we be if we dared to be?

Many heroes have come and gone from our world, yet they never really leave--not as long as their stories are told in their honor, they really do live on! It has been our great National Treasure I feel, that we as Americans produce and are home to so many heroes in the world today-- people that are able to 'pull out all the stops' and do what to others might seem impossible, even at the cost of their own lives, their own feelings, their own reputations in many instances.

Heroes are found most everyday if we have an eye to look for them.

They were (and ARE) in the Gulf States--breaking down doors to find survivors, wading through waist deep toxic soup to bring them to safety and they are across that nation--those that are taking the chance to open their doors and their hearts to people who are 'strangers' refugees from Louisiana and Mississippi too!

There are those that are taking stands on human rights issues in organizations like the Red Cross, the ACLU and others--organizations that believe in the common dignity of every person in the world no matter their gender, nation of origin, color, handicap, creed, sexual orientation, ...etc. These too, are heroes in their own way.

There are those that are taking stands on environmental issues in organizations like Greenpeace, NewDream.org, scientists, climatologists, sociologists, environmental sciences, etc.--organizations and people that believe that protecting the environment is critical to sustaining humanity upon it at peace and in good health and circumstance.

There are those that are taking stands on health, basic human dignity in places like Rwanda, Tanzania, Kosovo, Afghanistan, India and many other places. Doctos Without Borders is made up of medical personnel that are heroes every day, bringing better health and medical care to the most needy in the world. The Sisters of Charity began as a Religious order founded upon these types of heroism by their Foundress, Mother Theresa of Calcutta.

There are those that are taking stands in school houses across the nation, children and teenagers that mean to make their places of learning better for all--working towards peaceful resolution by becoming student mediators, organizing days of prayer, opening up the doors to tolerance by stepping up and openly expressing who they are--even if it is less than popular. They are mentors, study partners, prayer partners, athletes...all learning to step outside of their own condition and give to the whole--in short living community.

There are those that are taking stands for the simple life and simple values. They are homesteading, learning to live self-sufficiently, learning the tasks and trades and joys and sorrows of farming, livestock raising, homeschooling, chopping wood, etc... They daily consume less in a consumer driven society then some of us would ever dream of. They are leading by example the call to simplify and to ready for economic uncertainty and peak oil. People think they're nuts.. I think they are heroes of the first order!

We can find heroes everywhere, if we look around us.

I find heroes right here at the BoP. We don't always agree on things, but I feel it is in their open stating of things and in their own blogs that heroes are being born every day! This past week, one of my heroes was Mark's daughter Lexi. This week, two of my heroes are my husband and my "twin soul" Terri. People who give of themselves selflessly to others, with little in the way of complaint and at the same time they strive to be their personal best--reaching towards goals, ever striving yet doing so with such grace and dignity.

I think, heroes are found in every country of the world, every moment of every day. Funny thing about heroes though, to SEE THEM it necessitates taking our "eyes off of ourselves" and seeing others for what they do and not what we would have them do. See them as they really are, hear them as they speak from their hearts and view their actions without judgment--to see and hear and experience the fullness of what heroism is really all about.

Nariel - Ancient Eyes for Current Times


When we were kids, our guest blogger Kevin and I used to play Superhero. He was always Lightning Lad, and I was usually Cosmic Boy. We fought interstellar crime on our bicycles in our small town in Oklahoma. Later, our heroes became Kirk and Spock, Han and Luke. Our heroes taught us to stand strong against evil, to fight when we had to, and to do what was right. It's nice to see that after all these years, our heroes still teach us those things.

Now, our heroes are real. They are the firemen that ran into the World Trade Towers while others were running out. They're the men and women serving around the world, fighting enemies at least as evil as those fought by our childhood heroes. And like those fictional supermen, they are laying down their lives for what they believe.

Some of my heroes fight evil from a keyboard these days. Like the men running the first printing presses, Bloggers try to publish the truth. We try to get around the spin from left and right. And we are succeeding. By publishing the facts, regardless of spin, we too contribute to the War on Terror.

Heroes all, left and right. The Legion of Superheroes would be proud.

Mark - Liberty Just In Case


Heroes.

We all must find our heroes.

I see my heroes every day in the common citizen who says, "Thank you" at the lunch counter, just because I am in BDU's.

I see the guy down the street that runs the Neighborhood Watch, and the members of the PFA (PTA) at my kid's school, who volunteer their time for nothing more than wanting a better community, to be involved.

I see it in the guy who works across from me, who goes to every city counsel meeting, and the guy who runs the charity golf tournament every year, simply because they want a nice place to live. I see heroes in the teachers who work long hours for too little just to see the look of discovery on our kids' faces.

And I see one in my next-door neighbor, who is risking it all to follow a dream to run his own restaurant, and who would give it all up in an instant if his kids needed him to. These are true heroes, everyday heroes, which we often overlook because their secret identities are right out in the open.

The heroes we have are all around us, we just have to look, and occasionally say, thank you.

Zaphriel - Zaphriel's Blog
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