Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Stand Up

Soon the United States of America will celebrate Independence Day. The Fourth of July typically finds its citizens enjoying cookouts, parades, family gatherings and spectacular fireworks displays. As we pause this year for our celebrations, permit me to offer a leadership suggestion for all men: stand up. Yes, stand up.

There was a time in our country's history when a lady entered a room, all the men who were seated would stand. The court official today still announces the arrival of the judge with the words, "All rise!" When the president of the United States enters a room, even his most outspoken detractors get to their feet.

And why do we stand? It is a sign of respect. A man shows his deference for a lady by standing. Those in a courtroom rise to accord the judge his due. When the president arrives, those in attendance stand up, honoring the office and the individual. No matter how much our culture changes, the custom of standing to show respect is still proper and appropriate.

There was a time in the not so distant past when the U.S. flag passed in a parade, people on the sidelines -- all the people on the sidelines -- would stand and place their hands over their hearts. To rise as the flag passes was -- and is -- considered a sign of deep respect for this venerated national symbol and the country it represents.

Men, recent observations have indicated the practice of standing for the flag is becoming passé.

The flag is much more than just a powerful emblem of our country. It represents the hopes and dreams of all those who have fought for, bled for and died to protect it -- and our nation -- from all enemies. Their sacrifices are the blood-stained threads that hold the flag together -- flying high and proud.

So men, let's start standing up when honor is due. We can stand up for our lady; we can stand up for the judge, and we can stand up for our flag!

May she ever fly free!

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