VELVETILLUSION LITERARY MAGAZINE
Toggle Menu

FREEDOM By: G. Emil Reutter

 

They gather on the street
corner. A mixture of old and young. Cardboard signs
waving in the air. Middle aged men, balding with Jeff
hats on, faded jeans and campaign buttons from lost
causes fought many years earlier. College women and
men dressed like their mothers and fathers 3 decades
before. Singing protest songs from a period so faded
that they no longer are meaningful except to those who
feel with their heart. Protesting a war unlike
Vietnam, unlike any other in that it is greatly
supported in a country which loves peace. Relishing in
rebellion, mocking the establishment they march on
chanting slogans, waving signs attempting to gain
momentum and bring the main stream to their cause.
While they march, Baghdad falls and the Iraq
people run into the streets to celebrate new found
freedom. In minutes the anti-war signs drop out of
sight and new signs wave above the crowd, stop the
occupation of Iraq. In seconds they have found their
new cause and protest with new found vigor and
purpose.

I look in wonder at these people and their cause. I
smile knowing what they do is more then carry a sign
or sing a song. I smile at their freedom to express
themselves, to keep the government in check to insure
my freedoms remain intact. I smile because I see all
the rebellion coming forth from them and know what
they do not know. I smile because they are protectors
of the constitution. In their rebellion they insure
the right to assemble and the right to free speech.
They carry on Jefferson’s desire, that the republic be
preserved through revolution and disagreement with the
government. They do not live in the gray twilight of
indecision but in the battle field of political
discourse and purpose. Heroes come in every shape and
size today. Warriors who bravely fight for freedom,
cops and fireman who protect freedom and yes
protesters who stand in the street and brave the wave
of criticism. Protesters who while not always knowing
it, give the warriors something to fight for and the
cops and fireman someone to protect. Protesters as
heroes who protect the rights of all, how ironic it is.
Rebellion that protects the status quo.

 

Loss of Freedom

By G Emil Reutter

 

The planes crashed into the Pentagon and the Trade Center, one burning in a Pennsylvania field. Lives of innocent people lost and families suffering. The terrorists challenged our freedoms. They passed the Patriot Act.

A child stands in a classroom with hand over heart pledging allegiance to the United States knowing freedom is our right. They passed the Patriot Act.

Debate of middle eastern politics takes place in a college classroom. A student takes the opposite opinion of the main stream. The next morning investigators knock on the students door. They passed the Patriot Act.

A soldier walks through the streets of a foreign land willing to give the ultimate sacrifice for the freedoms of his homeland and to free oppressed people. They passed the Patriot Act.

Terrorists in a secluded location plot to take the freedom of Americans away. Smiling they read the document rushed through both houses of Congress. They passed the Patriot Act.

Americans celebrate Independence Day, fireworks fill the sky, bands play in every town and square in the nation. The celebration of freedom rings throughout the land yet Americans are stunningly quiet about the freedoms lost in the Patriot Act. They passed the Patriot Act.

Freedom in our country came at a high price. Many lives were lost to preserve the freedoms our constitution and declaration provide for us. Yet Americans remain quiet and uninformed about the freedoms lost due to the Patriot Act. We allowed them to pass the Patriot Act

 

 

G.Emil Reutter is a writer of short stories and
essays. Residing in the Philadelphia Pennsylvania area
he writes about life as he observes it. He is inspired
to write his thoughts and stories by his good friend
Lisa Edwards of the Toronto area. He is a dedicated
father to his daughter Katie who attends Philadelphia University.

P.S. - just so you know, I use the writing name of G Emil Reutter as a tribute to my great uncle who was named Emil and never learned to read or write. He was a fine man who was deeply frustrated that he never learned.