Saturday, June 14, 2014

Flag Day

Our flag represents the American story.  It speaks to our struggles, hopes, desires and dreams and, more importantly, our overcoming horrific obstacles.  It unites us with many permissions and freedoms that must never ever be taken for granted.

I am always gratified when I see our flag displayed.  It keeps me hopeful and earnest.  I see it and believe anything is possible, especially when we work hard and dream big.  Never doubt the American dream, regardless of how hard you must fight.  Freedom, equality and opportunity for 'ALL' Americans – regardless of gender, race, national origin, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, or disability – that’s your deserved right.

Furthermore, the American Flag is a reminder that we are not a Christian, English-speaking nation, nor should we ever be.  We are a melting pot of cultures, enhanced by various religions and many languages – with shared ideals, thoughts, feelings, practices and passions.

I have objections when it comes to religion, but more so with followers because they often manipulate ancient text to validate their judgments. They propagate fear out of selfish necessity.  Politicians often use it as a tool of oppression.  This must end!  (I do know my share of thoughtful responsible believers who respect, honor and appreciate the diverseness of our wonderful nation because they fight the good fight for the underdog, especially when it comes to civil rights.)

No matter what you believe, religion must be all-inclusive.  We must look for the positive, and relent on the hate-mongering rhetoric.  We all matter, and deserve the love of each other, and of a God that may or may not exist, depending on your beliefs.

Just as I am proud of the American Flag, I am mindfully enthusiastic of the many other flags I see when I’m out walking in my community and other places – flags that represent various cultures and ethnicities, and let me not forget those that symbolize diversity, too.

It’s gay pride month, and when I see the American flag, side-by-side with a rainbow flag, it makes me smile big and it affords me even more hope because it tells he how far we’ve come in our struggle for equality, but there is still much work to be done.

No matter what flags you choose to wave, and I sincerely hope one of them will always be the American Flag, be forever mindful of what they all typify – pride, dignity and respect.  The flag I will covet most is the American Flag because it personifies what I cherish most in life and what too many of us take for granted, especially in this day and age, FREEDOM! – paerki

(I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.)



Related Post: Happy Pride Month








What would life be like without memories? It’s fair to say, there would be no life at all. Memory is our communication, reason, coherence, our action and more importantly, our feeling. Memories create our path in life, developing our psychology and leading us emotionally.

One of the best ways to create and store memories is with video. These simple effortless little snippets of time create diaries and become perpetual time capsules, which justify our walk on earth, telling all with great enthusiasm… I was here! I mattered! I lived! Please, don’t forget me.

Share your views, thoughts and opinions in the written word. Snap photographs so that your eyes can travel back in time, remembering the happy and sad moments that made you the person you were, are and became in life. But, whenever possible, capture video to enhance the memories you leave behind, so that others may pass the essence of your life on to future generations.

Homeland

Preserve Your Happiness (Aug 13, 2013): This is for you, because you need to hear these words again. Live life happy. Find your joy. Now more than ever, it’s time for people to reconnect with their inner self. Find your happy place, rejuvenating the total you – mind, body, soul and spirit. It’s a mandate... Continue Reading

Baltimore City (Maryland)

World AIDS Day (Dec 1, 2013): Many scientific advances have been made in HIV/AIDS treatment. There are laws to protect people living with HIV/AIDS, and we understand so much more about the condition. But despite this, there are still individuals who do not know the facts about how to protect themselves and others, and... Continue Reading

Evergreen Museum & Library

Thank You For So Much Beauty (Mar 15, 2010): Do you realize how much beauty you bring to the world? Do you know how awesome you are? Really?! Do you?! I am in awe of your work. I love your use of rich and vibrant colors, some even electric. The faces are what really capture my attention; they are delicate... Continue Reading

Baltimore Book Festival

A Culture Of Hate (Jan 9, 2011): Weekends fly by so quickly, or so it appears. However, this particular weekend seemed unusually long, and I think it had something to do with the gruesome events that took place on Saturday in Tucson, Arizona. I am shocked by the horror that unfolded, a young man throwing his entire... Continue Reading

Station North Arts District

A 'Seagull' Of Memories (Mar 7, 2010): When I see gulls (known to many as seagulls), I think of the shoreline. I have wonderful childhood memories of playing in the sand in Ocean City; building sand castles, and coming back later in the day to watch the waves crash into my creativity, only to go back the next day to... Continue Reading

H.P. Rawlings Conservatory & Botanic Gardens

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I love photographs! They have this amazing ability to tell stories of fun places, special moments, memorable events, and exciting places. They give us reason to pause and remember friends, family, coworkers and so many others. One photograph can conjure up a flood of memories taking us on a journey. They help us remember the past, enjoy the present and ponder the future.

On a cold and rainy day I love sitting in my living room with a roaring fire, a glass of wine, classical music playing in the background and my many photographs scattered about me. I love sifting through what I call my special collection, which refers to my favorites. They remind me of the saddest and happiest moments of my life. They remind me of challenges and overcoming.

My large collection of images are a testament to a life lived. Life happens all around us so it’s important to collect special memories, and what better way than with a photograph.

Edith Ann

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Peabody Institute

What Makes A Good Year (Dec 18, 2013): It’s that time of year when I take long walks alone to contemplate the past year. I guess you could say it’s my time to atone. What a year it has been! As I write this I’m wondering what makes a good year? I’ve never asked myself that question before... Continue Reading

Sherwood Gardens

Mural - Mural On The Wall (Mar 14, 2011): All are beautiful in my eyes, as they are striking masterpieces that enhance many communities, especially those challenged by poverty and abandonment. They fill in the gaps for neighborhoods lacking funding and manpower, providing just a bit of hope when... Continue Reading

Browns Orchards

The Human Condition (Jul 17, 2012): Words that are sufficiently crafted can leave a lasting impact on the world. It is good to keep in mind those words that will better help tell our story, ones that will represent us well for years to come. We must be clear in our purpose, concise in our action... Continue Reading

Patterson Park

Selfie (Jan 19, 2014): I was asked the following question by one of my Facebook friends… "I have to ask you this Paul, do you have a personal photographer who is with you constantly?" This question is worthy of a blog post, so here it goes. Enjoy! Good question, and one I am asked often enough and don't mind answering... Continue Reading

Charles Village Festival

Yielding To Signs (Mar 28, 2011): Sunday was the perfect day to be outdoors. The sky was a bright baby blue and absolutely stunning to look at, especially when it became the backdrop for seagulls and blackbirds, effortlessly soaring and plummeting in between wind gusts. It was magical, a hypnotic visual sensation... Continue Reading
There are many people in the world affected by disease. I never thought I would be one of the many. However, at any given time life can change. Mine did! There were many twists and turns, but I made it through and you can too. I am a Celiac on the move living life one meal at a time. Learn more about my life as a Celiac. Celiac Disease is a lifelong, digestive disorder affecting children and adults. In short, I have an allergy to gluten, and the treatment is a lifelong scrupulous avoidance of it.

No matter what, know this: You are never alone. There are people out there who’ve struggled, endured, made it through and are sharing their message of survival. No, they might not be at your side, but their spirit is out there in words, attempting to help others on their journey. Let’s all unite by sharing our individual stories, remedies for healthy living, food and recipes to keep us strong, and let’s find the laughter too because it can be some of the best medicine. Always remember, there is power in numbers. Check me out: A Celiac On The Move

Stony Run Trail

Thank You (Nov 3, 2013): It’s hard to believe another Thanksgiving is just around the corner. In the background while standing waiting for a bus (as well as on the bus), and at the grocery store, I hear peoples’ musings about how they will spend their holiday. While many are frantically digesting... Continue Reading

Holi

You Are Beautiful! (Jul 17, 2013): I wish you could look into the mirror and see beyond your face, way past the surface to see more. More than what the world sees, more than what your friends see, more than I or even you can see. Forget what everything around you tells you to be. Be who... Continue Reading

Alpaca / Lama Farm

St. Michael's Catholic Church (Oct 17, 2011): The weekend has now faded into the past. However, this was one of its highlights. Art is to be found everywhere. When I look at these photos I think about all those involved with the creation of this magnificent structure – from the community (immigrate families)... Continue Reading

BMA (Sculpture Garden)

Bittersweet (Sept 7, 2013): I’ve been estranged from my parents for close to 20 years, but yesterday I learned my father passed away. I sincerely hope he found joy in his advanced years – more importantly, peace. For those who mourn his passing, focus on the memories and the joy he brought to... Continue Reading

Jones Falls Trail

City Of The Silent (Mar 18, 2010): Underground in permanent stasis they speak no more. Many have departed this life, leaving behind a legacy for all to enjoy, cherish, honor and, with a little luck and ingenuity, replicate. For me, this quiet region of slumber still has a pulse, and you can feel it when you walk these... Continue Reading

Country Drive

A Happy Life Begins At Home (Apr 19, 2010): My home is very important to me. My life between these four walls of privacy I value like no other. It’s immeasurable, and absolutely priceless. It’s an oasis with a cocoon-like feeling, shielding me from the outside manipulative forces of violence and pollution. It allows... Continue Reading
"I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do because I notice it always coincides with their own desires." - Susan B. Anthony

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