When I think of the words “the American Spirit” so many images come to mind: raising the flag at Iwo Jima, the fire fighters running into the Twin Towers, John Kennedy Jr. saluting at his father’s grave. Is that, however, really the American spirit? Or is it the feelings that were felt by the entire country as these and other events were happening. When I looked up the word spirit it amazed me how the word’s definitions fit how I think of American Spirit. The first definition, “the vital principle or animating force within living beings”, could not be anymore true.
The American Spirit is a force within this country that brings us together as one in times of need or distress. The second, “the soul”, the American Spirit is the heart and soul of our country. It is what makes us different from any other country in the world. Another is, “the essential nature of a person or group”. As a group we are unstoppable because we believe in the spirit of our country and its people. The American Spirit can be felt in so many ways. Many times I get choked up by things that I see as American Spirit.
When we have an assembly at school and five-hundred students say the Pledge of Allegiance, at a sporting event with the National Anthem is sung, when they show a child running in to their father’s or mother’s arms that they haven’t seen for a year because they have been deployed defending our country. The overwhelming gratitude I have for the men and women that serve our country. That is American Spirit. Some have tried to break our spirit to no avail. Not just outsiders but from within. Recently, the US Supreme Court has ruled that you have the right to protest military funerals. We are a people that are will not stand for this.
As important as it is to have freedom of speech it is also important to support the men and women who lay down their lives for us every day. They are the embodiment of American Spirit. Those that are willing to give their lives so that we may enjoy the many freedoms we take for granted on a daily basis. Although everyone may have a different definition of American Spirit, I am sure that they all have the common belief that is how we as a people come together as a nation and take pride in who we are. The American Spirit is not a symbol or action rather a deep seeded feeling that lies within us all.