In Hawaii, some of the most stunning views are from old military pillboxes, a powerful reminder that we have access to incredible things only because our military needed safe, protected places on the highest lookouts with the most unobstructed views. When visiting these spaces, it's easy to think back to the 1940's and imagine a group of young 20-somethings in full army gear spending hour-after-hour in these pillboxes wondering if another attack is around the corner.
But its even easier to overlook history entirely and never pay homage to the heroes that protected (and still protect) us.
+ Immigrants who labored
+ Native Americans who were relocated
+ Brave men and women of our military
+ Protesters who fought for equality
+ Politicians who developed a constitution that is still the model of the free world
+ Leaders of organizations to help those that the government couldn't
+ Millions of citizens that paid taxes
+ Adults in jobs making our economy tick
+ Teachers building a brighter next generation
+ Lawyers fighting injustices
+ Firemen that serve the public
+ Police forces that protect it
+ Doctors that cure it
The list goes on and on and on... Imperfect as it might be, America was built on the shoulders of people who sacrificed everything - including themselves - for us to have "this".
But beyond America, we have many "this's" in our lives. We have ourselves, created by the chance meeting of two people we lovingly call our parents. We have best friends, united by a random turn of events we can hardly trace. We have airplanes and cell phones that, even if we really think about it, we probably can't begin to explain how they work - they just do.
The best part is, you don't need to explain "this".
But maybe every once and a while, it will do us all to good to reflect on what it took for us to have "this".