The most memorable hero and role model in my life was my maternal Grandfather, Graham Hammonds.
He was born in 1895, one of ten children, raised on a farm in the days when everything was done by hand or with mules, he learned early on that if there was to be food on the table and a roof over their heads, it would have to be taken from the stubborn Carolina farm lands or the woods and waters where game and fish abounded in those days.
He took full responsibility for himself and his family; he could build a house or a boat and grow crops. He was a master hunter, fisherman and a natural leader of men. His word was better than any contract a bevy of the best attorneys could draw up and he was strong and masculine with a great respect for and faith in God.
I grew up in a world of men of this ilk, honest, self-sufficient and responsible with a "whatever it takes to get the job done" work ethic, but Granddaddy was a cut above and the undisputed patriarch of the family. In times of trouble there was nobody better to have around, he faced it head on.
He is the epitome of my idea of what a man should be and the ruler I use to gage the measure of a man.
The presidents of my early days were father figures, with strength of conviction and the courage to act. Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower, men of action who admittedly made mistakes but lead the country from the vanguard, took responsibility for their own actions and moved boldly forth, fighting wars, making decisions on what they thought was best for the security and prosperity of the country, not hiding behind polls and blaming their shortcomings on previous administrations.
Even the major male movie stars of my time were men like John Wayne, Gary Cooper and Humphrey Bogart, projecting an image of unabashed masculine strength.
When I look at a mealy mouthed political hack like Harry Reid or the hear the empty patrician platitudes of a John Kerry or watch Barack Obama flounder around, hiding from major decisions, blaming everybody but himself for the deplorable state of American foreign policy, deceiving, lying, appointing clueless cronies to positions of great power it makes me wonder what has happened to the American male.
When Obama walks on to the world stage with the likes of Vladimir Putin or Benjamin Netanyahu he's like a deer in the headlights compared to the strength these other leaders exude.
What Obama has let happen in Iraq is tantamount to disrespecting the blood that was shed there by America's finest, giving up the hard won gains they made and leaving the nation of Iraq worse off than it was when we went there and creating a base of operations for international terror operations.
His policies were not reckoned on the security of Iraq or even that of America, but bald-faced lies catering to the political base he figures will keep the democrat party in power. Everything is politics with this man.
Afghanistan will soon follow Iraq and fall right back into the hands of Islamic radicals as soon as the last American troops are pulled out.
When I look at the field of potential candidates emerging in the Republican ranks right now what I see are some good men, but no one with the boldness and personal conviction to stand up and tell the country the whole truth, the audacity to fight the entrenched eco-lobbies tooth and nail to open the plentiful resources of domestic energy production, to remove the suffocating and silly government regulations and burdensome corporate taxes that chase manufacturing offshore.
Somebody to bring the IRS to heel, curb the excesses at NSA, put people to work instead of on food stamps, to rebuild and restore presidential respect and support for our military, put a competent butt kicker in charge of the Veterans Administration and appoint an attorney general who enforces all the laws not just the ones they agree with.
Somebody who respects, defends and rules by the constitution and the rest of the federal papers, who would drastically reduce the size and government and curb the powers of the EPA and the rest of the superfluous and redundant government agencies that plague the progress of this nation.
Someone who, without fear of offending, would root out the enclaves of radicals and terror cells in the homeland, expand the fast strike military forces, restrict the sale of American businesses to foreign countries.
Someone with faith in God, and who truly believes in American exceptionalism.
That's how my Granddaddy would have done it.
What do you think?
Pray for our troops and the peace of Jerusalem
God Bless America