Love for America

Great Quotes
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A nation can survive it's fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and he carries his banners openly. But the traitor moves among those within the gates freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears no traitor; he speaks in the accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their garments, and he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation; he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of a city; he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to be feared.

-- Cicero
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A few months before I was born, my dad met a stranger who was new to our
small town. From the beginning, Dad was fascinated with this enchanting
newcomer, and soon invited him to live with our family. The stranger was
quickly accepted and was around to welcome me into the world a few months

As I grew up I never questioned his place in our family. Mom taught me to
love the Word of God, and Dad taught me to obey it. But the stranger was
our storyteller. He could weave the most fascinating  tales.  Adventures,
mysteries, and comedies were daily conversations. He could
hold our whole family spellbound for hours each evening. He was like a
friend to  the whole family. He took Dad, Bill, and me to our first major
league baseball  game. He was always encouraging us to see the movies and
he even made arrangements to introduce us to several movie stars.

The stranger was an  incessant talker. Dad didn't seem to mind, but
sometimes Mom would quietly get  up - while the rest of us were enthralled
with one of his stories of faraway  places - go to her room, read her
Bible, and pray. I wonder now if she ever  prayed that the stranger would
leave. You see, my dad ruled our household with  certain moral convictions.
But this stranger never felt an obligation to honor them. Profanity, for
example, was not allowed in our house-not from us, from our friends, or
adults. Our longtime visitor, however, used occasional four letter words
that burned my ears and made Dad squirm. To my knowledge the stranger was
never confronted.

My Dad was a teetotaler who didn't permit alcohol in  his home - not even
for cooking. But the stranger felt like we needed exposure  and enlightened
us to other ways of life. He offered us beer and other alcoholic beverages
often.  He made cigarettes look tasty, cigars manly, and pipes

He talked freely (too much too freely) about  sex. His comments were
sometimes blatant, sometimes suggestive, and generally embarrassing. I know
now that my early concepts of the man/woman relationship were influenced by
the stranger.

As I look back, I believe it was the  grace of God that the stranger did
not influence us more. Time after time he  opposed the values of my
parents, yet he was seldom rebuked and never asked to  leave.

More than thirty years have passed since the stranger moved in with the
young family on Morningside Drive. But if I were to walk into my parents'
den today, you would still see him sitting over in a corner, waiting  for
someone to listen to him talk and watch him draw
his pictures.

His  name? . . . . . . . . . . . . .  .

We always just called him .  . . TV.

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