Thursday, July 31, 2008
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Monday, July 21, 2008
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
PS I've never divulged any classified or Sensitive Security Information (SSI) and I never will. But, the nonsense must stop if we're going to keep innocent people safe!
I’m the former Federal Air Marshal (FAM) on the Drew Griffin CNN report on Anderson Cooper 360 last night. As a side note, I’m really not that bald. (Okay, I’m in denial.)
Anyway, on a more serious note, I can’t thank CNN enough. Bravo. Well done. I'm hopeful that things will change for the better within the TSA and the FAM Service.
For a portion of the story and trailer, click here.
For more Aviation Security blogs I write click on the link on the far left. (Note: I deliberately leave off the newspaper’s name so more Google hits will take readers there and not here to my personal blog.)
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Monday, July 14, 2008
I'm also being interviewed later today with a radio station about my Avaition Security blog (another story altogether). Be sure to click on the link at the left every day or so for updates.
I guess for the radio, I can wear my flip-flops, eh?
Thursday, July 10, 2008
I deliberately avoid mentioning the "major newspaper" I blog for because I want Google searchers to go to that link and not my blog. (Click on the Aviation Security link on the left.) Nevertheless, since writing about something shocking--literally--the W.T. blog link has had over 100,000 hits to that article alone. Naturally, some people visit this sight, my personal blog.
Here I get to write about whatever I want, to include occasionally mentioning my faith. I'm an American; and I'm completely grateful for my faith, my family and my country.
Saturday, July 5, 2008
Glory is something that some men chase and others find themselves stumbling upon, not expecting it to find them. Either way it is a noble gesture that one finds bestowed upon them. My question is when does glory fade away and become a wrongful crusade, or an unjustified means by which consumes one completely? I have seen war. I have seen death, the sorrow that encompasses your entire being as a man breathes his last. I can only pray and hope that none of you will ever have to experience some of these things I have seen and felt here. I have felt fear and have felt adrenaline pump through my veins making me seem invincible. I will be honest and say that some of the things I have seen here are unjustified and uncalled for. However for the most part we are helping this country. It will take more years than most expect, but we will get Iraq to stand on its own feet. Most of what I have seen here I will never really mention or speak of, only due to the nature of those involved. I have seen a man give his food to a hungry child and family. Today I saw a hospital that most of us would refuse to receive treatment from. The filth and smell would allow most of us to not be able to stand to enter, let alone get medicine from. However you will be relieved to know that coalition forces have started to provide security for and supply medicine and equipment to help aid in the cause.
I have seen amazing things happen here; however I have seen the sad part of war too. I have seen the morals of a man who cares nothing of human life…I have seen hate towards a nation’s people who has never committed a wrong, except being born of a third world, ill educated and ignorant to western civilization. It is not everybody who feels this way only a select few but it brings questions to mind. Is it ok for one to consider themselves superior to another race? Surprising we are not a stranger to this sort of attitude. Meaning that in our own country we discriminate against someone for what nationality they are, their education level, their social status. We distinguish our role models as multimillion dollar sports heroes or talented actors and actress who complain about not getting millions of dollars more then they are currently getting paid.
Our country is a great country, don’t get me wrong on this, otherwise none of us would be living there. My point of this is how can we come over here and help a less than fortunate country without holding contempt or hate towards them if we can’t do it in our country. I try to do my part over here, but the truth is over there, United States, I do nothing but take.
Ask yourself when was the last time you donated clothes that you hadn’t worn out. When was the last time you paid for a random stranger’s cup of coffee, meal or maybe even a tank of gas? When was the last time you helped a person with the groceries into or out of their car?
Think to yourself and wonder what it would feel like if when the bill for the meal came and you were told it was already paid for.
More random acts of kindness like this would change our country and our reputation as a country. It is not unknown to most of us that the rest of the world looks at us with doubt towards our humanity and morals. I am not here to preach or to say look at me, because I am just as at fault as the next person. I find that being here makes me realize the great country we have and the obligation we have to keep it that way. The 4th has just come and gone and I received many emails thanking me for helping keep America great and free. I take no credit for the career path I have chosen; I can only give it to those of you who are reading this, because each one of you has contributed to me and who I am.
Thursday, July 3, 2008
A black female jazz singer sang a version of what has been called the “Black national anthem,” according to this article.
I don’t care if we have a black president or not; I care about WHO the president is.
I don’t care what color my neighbor is; I care about how GOOD my neighbor is.
The Star Spangled Banner has been switched and demeaned in the past. It has been switched up and sang with Spanish lyrics, different words, meaning and sound. That’s not right either!
I don’t care that my neighbors came from Mexico; I care if they’re here legally.
I just came back from Iraq. When I sang The Star Spangled Banner the first time after coming home, I cried. I wept so hard I couldn’t sing. I wrote about it here.
I fought side by side with my black friends and even a Cuban-American. I’ve been a police officer and have been helped tremendously by my African American partners. On the corollary, I worked in the most dangerous part of the city, which subsequently was predominantly black. So, I arrested several blacks, several Hispanics and several white people.
I don’t care what color you are or what language you speak; I care how you treat me and my family.
I’ve made wonderful friends in South Korea, Iraq, Israel and Palestine, England, Germany and all over the United States. Over ten of my cousins, nieces and nephews are adopted. They come from China, Tonga, and South Korea. I have a half-nephew who is Hispanic, and a niece who is black. So I don’t care about skin color.
I believe that while we are different, we all are created in the image of God. We might have different customs, cultures and looks, but we all have the same spiritual DNA.
But when it comes to singing MY national anthem, in the country I love most, I refuse to have anyone wrest or twist the lyrics, the words or the tune.
Francis Scott Key was on a ship trying to negotiate a release of several American’s who had been captured by the British. While on the ship he witnessed the attack against Fort McHenry. The hail of artillery was sure to destroy the men and their will, but it didn’t. The ramparts (or high walls) surrounding the fortress, still stood and the flag – the beautiful, wonderful American flag and all it stood for – still flew high come morning. It was that wonderful site which prompted Francis Scott Key to pen perhaps the greatest lyrics in all history, and in all the world.
In war, there is no color. Soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines, know no color. We all speak one language. As Americans, and Americans in uniform, we’re all different and we’re all unique. Differences make America what it is – wonderful, beautiful, a land of great opportunity.
It was war that prompted Francis Scott Key to write those inspired lyrics. It wasn’t difference that bound the Founding Forefathers together to create the defiant and wonderful Declaration of Independence which we celebrate at this most incredible time of year. Nor was it separation that helped many of those same men to formulate the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
Three American contractors were held hostage in Columbia for five years. They were brought home today. I wrote about before here. God bless the men and women who assisted in their rescue, and God bless America.
We’re more similar than we are different, and in war as in peace, we should forget color and language. We must be one. To be one – “one nation under God” – we must not abandon the tenants of our nation’s history. Yes, we must remember the Buffalo Soldiers and rue the terrible and horrible history of slavery, but we must also remember that our ancestors bound together to fight against British tyranny to establish this land of peace and promise.
So, don’t ever change those beautiful, inspiring and wonderful lyrics. Don’t mock America. We’re still one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.