One cold day in January of 1961, less than a month before my 9th birthday, John F. Kennedy placed his left hand on a Bible and took an oath to support and defend the U.S. Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. I was so touched by the solemnity of the moment that tears welled up in my young, proud eyes.
In November of 1963 an assassin shot President Kennedy and robbed us of our constitutionally elected leader. Tears of sorrow and anger rolled off my cheeks as a young third grader tried to make sense of what had been taken from us.
In 1969 I fought hard to hold back tears of pride as I took the same oath that President Kennedy had taken as I put on the uniform of my country and swore to uphold and defend the Constitution just as he had.
Over the next few years I shed many silent and private tears as I lost friends to Viet Cong bullets and land mines. I shed tears of sorrow and indignity as I returned to the United States and was spat upon by chanting protesters as I passed through the San Francisco airport.
In January of 1993 I shed a tear of doubt as a person who was a kindred spirit with those protesters and had said he loathed the military placed his hand on a Bible and took the same oath to support and defend the Constitution.
Two years ago, our country was ripped at the seams while the rule of law was subverted for the personal gain of this man. I shed a tear of sorrow for what was lost on the American people.
In November of 2000 I heard Al Gore's campaign manager say that the Constitution should be ignored and Florida's electoral votes should be awarded to Mr. Gore because he had won the nation's popular vote. Unfortunately I'm all out of tears.
Dale W. Hemman, Evans