Patriot – a person who loves their country and who is ready to defend it against an enemy (Oxford Language Dictionary).

America has embraced patriotism throughout history from the Revolutionary War through the world wars. Even today, young men and women are stationed throughout the world to defend freedom for us and for others.

Often, patriotism has meant giving up and making do. During the world wars, everyday items were rationed and scarce. Women painted their legs in lieu of nylons, substitutes like honey and sugar beet were used in place of sugar, and items like rubber and metal were donated to help the cause. Songs like “Over There” by George Cohan emphasized our commitment to stopping the evil overtaking Europe. Women left the homes to work in factories and men went off to battle or to support those fighting. Sacrifices were made by many, but they carried on and made do.

Even in times of non-conflict, such as the Great Depression, Americans joined together to ease the burden of others. Though each had less and made sacrifices, they worked together to survive and carry on.

Today, America and the world is facing a new battle. While it is hard to define and to see, it certainly has left a path of destruction in its travels. We are again asked to work together to ease the burden of the many and to be patriots supporting our country. And are these actions burdensome or harder than those found in the past? I think not. Simply wearing a mask and getting a vaccine can ensure the health and well-being of other Americans and the world at-large. Simple actions can end the scourge and eventually allow life to return to normal.

As a patriot, I wear my mask whenever I am out in public and I have received my vaccines. I will continue to do so as long as I need to to ensure the safety of others and to strive to a better tomorrow. Compared to the sacrifices others have made and continue to make, I believe it’s the least I can

LEDA BOAL

Cochranton



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