What is a major stress in your life?: Dealing with a family loss due to deployment. What is something your thankful for as a teen?: Freedom in the U.S. The moment of reality hit when I received the surveys from the students. Time after time each teenager said the same exact thing. As if the war was molding each and every one of us in the same way. The younger generations of America bearing the true and everlasting scars of the war overseas in the Middle East. Kids in elementary school up to teenagers about to graduate have all been affected and carry the similar views. On top of the normal pressures a society puts on us we are faced to deal with the stress of worrying about loved ones fighting for their lives as well as our country. The media giving us access to whats really happening and also heightening every one's absolute worst fear. Everyday just as a natural thought in our lives, we tend to think about the possibility of terrorists, especially remembering back to the tragic 9/11. We think of the fighting and the war itself. Whether you would be able to even get that phone call at the end of your day to say you loved them. We think about the people that started this whole ordeal and our tarnished, stereotypical view of ethnics related to whats going on. Us as generations will continue to never forget these things that society almost forced us to be conditioned with. We will grow up with this thinking and it will affect how we later run our country. But despite all of this, the remarkable thing is that on that survey, they all said they were thankful for their freedom that we have the privilege of having. Even though we are growing up with many tarnished views, we are also growing up more exposed. We are able to have an insight into other countries and it only makes us realize how lucky and fortunate we are despite all of the despair.The sense of pride and nationalism that remains in the younger generations is truly remarkable. Freedom. Freedom. Freedom. Every time you say it you cant help but smile, being proud of the red, white and blue and the soldiers fighting to keep it there. Bringing us back to the true reality that freedom really doesn't come free.
November 16, 2011