A tradition around our house is to listen to Christmas Music on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. We usually try and get one or two CDs of new Christmas music. The CD that we purchased this year is Josh Grobin’s Noel. I highly recommend this CD.

Listening to the rendition of “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” gave me pause to think and reflect. Included in the recording are greetings from members of our armed forces in Iraq to their loved ones. One cannot ignore the fact there are people making great sacrifices on our behalf, whether it is being away from their loved ones or giving their lives. One also reflects on that it is not just the present day situations, but those situations in years past, both in open war and war disguised as peace. Our soldiers are the most obvious of those making sacrifices, but there are others as well who make sacrifices just as important – their families. I know I have written about this before, but it doesn’t change throughout time.

In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility – I welcome it.John F. Kennedy

And that is what our elected representatives and soldiers are charged with – defending freedom. There are those who decry our involvement in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places around the world. That is their right under our Constitution. But they need to answer the question, “Is the world a better place with us or would it be better without us?” If the answer to the question is in the affirmative, then the sacrifices of all throughout the years is justified. If the answer is in the negative, then they do not understand the role of this country in defending freedom in the world, and the sacrifices have been in vain.

It is an unfortunate fact that we can secure peace only by preparing for war. – John F. Kennedy

And sometime, to secure peace, war must be waged.

A people free to choose will always choose peace. – Ronald Reagan

And that is what this country must strive for, to champion the freedom of people to choose their own destiny, otherwise, any sacrifice in the name of freedom will be in vain.