I believe the importance of increasing liberty in a time when it is decreasing. In such times, the sights in DC reminded me of that perseverance in the cause of liberty is necessary for its triumph. George Washington's history, on display in the National Museum of American History, reminded me of the willingness to make great sacrifice against long odds in the cause of liberty. My favorite quote was from King George III:
When King George III heard Washington would resign his commission to a powerless Congress, he told the painter Benjamin West: “If he does that, he will be the greatest man in the world.”
He did so because he believed more in the cause he served than in himself. Today, we need such leaders in the liberty movement, but certainly our cause is more likely to give rise to such men and women than leftism and socialism.
At the Iwo Jima memorial, I marveled at what moved very ordinary men to risk their lives hoisting our country's flag. Half of the six would later die on that island. Our country still produces such heroes.
When our imperfect country could not come to grips with the evil of slavery, Lincoln explained why war was necessary to preserve the Union. There are those who have argued that secession might be a right of the states under a legal reading of the constitution, but Lincoln made clear that a secession to perpetuate an evil that had been intended by the framers not to endure, was illegitimate.
I also visited the crypt of John Paul Jones. Here was a man who adopted our cause as his own, even thought he was a Scotsman and therefore a British citizen. I am convinced that the call to resist tyranny will continue be attractive to men of character even into our age. It was fitting that Theodore Roosevelt ordered a state funeral for him when his body was returned to the United States.
Photo courtesy of U.S. Naval Academy.
I don't intend a travelogue of my visit, I just wanted to share that I was inspired. A trip to Washington in April is certainly good for the soul.