When writing this morning’s post about “Away in a Manger,” I completely neglected to mention or recognize the anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941. That attack—premised on the ludicrous idea that attacking America would cow our nation into re-opening trade exports to Japan’s thirsty navy—brought the United States into the Second World War, with Adolf Hitler foolishly declaring war on the United States three days after the Japanese attack. The attack also resulted in 2403 American deaths, both military and civilian, as well as the destruction of a huge chunk of America’s Pacific Fleet.
The world is a very different place than it was in 1941. In scanning Pearl Harbor headlines, one Business Insider headline seemed indicative of our fear of death: that daily deaths last week were higher than the number of deaths on the “date which will live in infamy.” Never mind that the nation’s population is substantially larger and more elderly (and, dare I say, less healthy) than it was in 1941. The Virus is a quasi-mystical force to be feared, so we huddle alone in our homes and avoid contact (ironically engaging in the very Japanese activity of mask-wearing).
By contrast, the response from Americans in 1941 was valorous. Hundreds of thousands of young men volunteered. My own paternal grandfather, who was only sixteen at the time, enlisted. He did so by purchasing a huge Bible, and then filled out the family genealogy by antedating his birth by two years. He then took the Bible and kicked it around in the dust of the road to give it the appearance of age, and presented the Bible and its doctored genealogy to the recruiting office. Pretty soon he making air supply runs for Uncle Sam.
What would happen now if the ChiComs the West Coast (actually, that might save the Republic…)? I have a hard time believing soy boys would be rushing to enlist. After all, they’ve been indoctrinated into believing our nation is a wicked tool of imperialism. They’d probably welcome our new Chinese overlords.
But perhaps the Spirit of ’41 is still strong in America. I like to think it is, at least here in the South.
Regardless, let us never forget the men who gave their lives that day, and throughout the war. They defeated great evil, and made America great.