Mason County News
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Freedom Fighters
Wednesday, April 7, 2010 • Posted April 7, 2010

Dear Gerry,

My sincere appreciation to Mr. Kemp for fighting for freedom in three wars. So did my father. I think freedom means different things to different fighters. Mr. Kemp is certainly decided in his views and didn’t appear to suffer any dissenting ones. One of my father’s sayings, often repeated, was "It’s difference of opinion that makes horse races." With Dad’s outlook, Mr. Kemp is entitled to his thinking; with Mr. Kemp’s intolerance, he’d decide that because Dad didn’t take the Bible literally, because Dad didn’t believe in God’s wrath, because maybe Dad would’ve chosen the Good Samaritan over the Old Testament, Dad wasn’t a "true American." Not a true American, but one who fought in three wars. I think we have a horse race here.

Mr. Kemp’s family also fought in the Revolution. What a coincidence! So did mine! My Great+Uncle, Thomas Nelson, was in the Va. House of Burgesses and close worker with Patrick Henry ("Give me liberty..."), was governor of Virginia after Thomas Jefferson, signed the Declaration of Independence, was a delegate to the Continental Congress, lost his 400 slaves, estates, and 20,000+ acres to fund the Va. militia and to keep the state of Virginia solvent, served as a general, single-handedly kept Virginia in the revolution when his Council evaporated, and led his militia (with Washington and Lafayette) at Yorktown (where he ordered his own home shelled) against Cornwallis in the final assault against the British. There were many factors in America’s winning the war against the British, but Thomas Nelson’s personally carrying the state of Virginia throughout the war by the sacrifice of his personal fortune is universally held by historians to be one of those critical factors.

Our Founding Fathers were not anti-government. Nor were they anti-tax;. They just didn’t think it fair that they had no say-so in British government decisions that affected them. Well, they also thought citizen representation could be improved. But basically, we had "other biggie" (Britain) affecting us (taxes) willy-nilly (no say-so). Before health insurance company reform, we had "other biggie (giant corporations) affecting us (premiums) willy-nilly (they could deny coverage, raise premiums, cancel coverage). Maybe I’m just thick, but I don’t see what all the uproar is about, an attack on personal liberty, etc. To me, it looks like exactly the sort of situation that our Founding Fathers thought unfair. So now we’ve taken a step to correcting it; don’t have a heart attack. How can our government be accused of violating the Constitution, of being unAmerican, in responding to the same sort of unfairness it was created to deal with? Looks to me like the government was doing its job.

By the way, Jesus said it was totally kosher to do good work on the Sabbath, so please, Mr. Kemp, don’t y’all lose any more sleep on that account.

Still waiting for my Va. rebate,

Helen Liston

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