To this generation, the so-called generation X, the freedoms that we enjoy are rights. Things that we believe we deserve regardless offactors such as race, sex, skin color, education, or income level. To enjoy them, the only thing that matters is that you are American, to my generation rights are expected for nothing in returnother than your citizenship. In the not too distant past, a time when my grandparents ruled with their youth, the ideas of this nation were much different. Children by todays standard were lining up for the cause of their nation, to defend the rights for which so many have fought and died for, they lined up for their friends and family, they lined up for you and for me, they lined up foreach other. It was the time of World War II and the largest threat that this nation had and has endured since the days of the Civil War, and itwas knocking upon America's doorstep.People all around the nation sacraficed like few today can even fathom. All of the things thatmy generation today considers "rights" were being willinglyforfitted by sons, daughters, fathers, and mothers for a chance to serve their nation and fellow man. It wasn't the sacrafice of a few that would serve the whole, it was the sacrafice of the whole of individuals that would strengthen this nation for decades to come. The book "Flags of our Fathers" by James Bradley is the story of the lives and sacrafices made by Bradley's father and his comrades.
These men partook in the most violent and deadly battle in the history of the United States Marines and were forever immortalized in a single moment as their picture was taken raising the flag atop Iwo Jima. Most would never make it home from that island, the ones who did would never be the same. Their sacrafice was paramount but not isolated, nor was it unique. It was similar to the sacrafices made by a whole nation, a nation of "common virtue". A well thought out and extremely well researched and documented book about the true soul of this nation, those who are willing to sacrafice all that is tangible, or may potentially be. Bradley tell the stories of each of these "flagraisers" to show that they were just "average americans" doing what we all should. Individual sacraficewhen all is to be lost, is what gives my generation the ability to feel so free and to enjoy so many rights in such a care-free manner. These are the sacrafices that makeAmerica so wonderful.