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Where have all the 'men' gone?
The Constitutional Party of Texas ^ | 6/10/02 | Devvy Kidd

Posted on 11/02/2002 6:10:10 AM PST by Pern

My comments here exclude those men who have stepped forward with incredible courage since 1913 to face this tyrannical government, and like our Founding Fathers, have paid an enormous price both personally and financially. People like Bill Benson, our fine gentlemen down in the great State of Tennessee and too many others to list.

Americans forget that the Founding Fathers were the "moneyed class" back then. They were farmers, merchants and men of means. They had a lot to lose, both in land and gold. Yet, they didn't hesitate to step forward against the most incredible odds to build a free nation, not just for themselves, but for their women and children.

My comments are directed at the men of this country, who over the past decades:

Sit back in their easy chair reading Newsweek or spend their time bare chested at a football game, well filled with suds to maintain those obscene beer bellies, while they have put their wives and children at risk. This nation is being invaded wholesale with illegal aliens who come into this country and kidnap, rape and murder our women and children. Some are caught, most are not. Why do the men turn a blind eye in pursuit of good times?

These same men will go vote for the same politicians, state or federal, over and over, who refuse to stop this massive invasion of our country putting their women and children at risk. These same men continue to idolize their party "leadership," while that same leadership refuses to stop this invasion of global riffraff, turning America into a third world dumping ground. These same men would rather spend time, not banding together and having a serious discussion with these politicians, but rather put on their expensive gear and go ride their bike up a mountain, see the latest Broadway show or take a day off work to stand in line to buy tickets to the new Star Wars flick. Why is this?

Today the men in this country sit around watching mindless trash like Survivor or Friends on the boob tube, instead of shouting down the roof against state and federal systems that are utterly and completely rotten beyond redemption. Systems and agencies that are putting their women and children into a state of involuntary servitude for all their lives. Instead they sit back with nary a whisper while state and federal judges to uphold this carnage against the people. Why is this?

Black robed judges continue to hand out welfare and benefits to illegal aliens who are legally entitled to nothing but deportation. Instead of holding their elected public servants accountable for this insanity, men just get up in the morning, go to work at the company store, then return home in the evening to their false sense of security. Why is this? Back in 1776, this breed of men would be called cowards.

Today men will spend endless hours with their stamp collection or at the bowling alley while Congress after Congress continues to pass unconstitutional legislation that deprives their women of their God-given rights - all because their "party" says it's good for our "democracy." Why is that?

Today men will ignore the documented truth that the state and federal governments are all in collusion to bring America into a one-world government, but they will believe any lie that comes out of the mouth of their favorite radio talk show host or TV anchorman. Today men are desperately clinging to their comfort zones while their women and children are at risk from a police state being erected around them. Why is this?

Today men will stand for hours on end feeding one-armed bandits in gambling casinos, while the Bush Administration's henchmen (Ashcroft and Mueller) continue to strip their women of their God-given rights, all in the name of "the war on terrorism." They are putting their children at risk by not demanding this government take the necessary measures to clean out the terrorists in this country, both Chinese and middle-Eastern. Why is this?

For decades, America's men think nothing of spending spend lots of money on music CDs or plunking down big bucks to attend concerts or jazz festivals instead of protecting their own families from state predators calling themselves "child protective services." Everyone with children is now a target. Why won't they band together and surround the state capitols and demand that this evil cease? Back in 1787, the men protected their women and children to the death.

For the older men, their grand children are targets of the state. But, these men have already served their country in the military and now it's time to spend their golden years in the Winnebago, they've done their part. After all, at Christmas they can show the grand children how much they love them by buying them "things" made in foreign countries. Why is this?

Today the men of this country will allow a sleezy, morally bankrupt individual like Bill Clinton get away with treason (selling our most sensitive national defense secrets to the Communist Chinese) because Clinton supports their women's "right" to kill their unborn babies. Back in 1854, this was unthinkable. Today, their blind loyalty is to their political party now instead of what's right. Why is this?

Today men think nothing of sitting down at the local bar every night during happy hour while their women and children are put at risk by agencies like the ATF and FBI making no knock, bust down the door on the wrong house raids, killing innocents inside. It's happened and it will continue to happen. A hundred years ago, this would not have been tolerated in a constitutional Republic because the men would not have stood for it, not for a minute.

While their women and children continue to live in a state of bondage to a tyrannical government, the men simply write checks to the RNC or the DNC, thus encouraging those scoundrels to stay on the same path of the planned destruction of this Republic. By writing a check instead of storming the gates, this gives those men more time for the golf course, doing recreational cocaine or surfing the Internet for countless hours enjoying that great "adult" American pastime called pornography. Their harmless pastime does put their women and children at risk out in society, but they no longer care. Why is this?

While the IRS bleeds a family dry, forcing the woman into the workplace and leaving the children to be raised by strangers, many of whom are pedophiles, the man of the house spends his free time doing the "guy thing" at a NASCAR speedway. Why is this? Why won't these men stand up to this rogue agency called the IRS?

Over the past 40 years, the men of this country have sat back and allowed themselves to be brow beaten into submission and castrated by so-called "feminists" like Rosie O'Donnell and Hillary Clinton (although I defy anyone to show me one single feminine attribute of those females) instead of stand up and saying, "Hell No!"

Hard core feminists aren't out there for equal pay, they're out there to destroy the male and the family unit. How it must gall them that the only way lesbians can "impregnate" their female lovers is artificial insemination by a male sperm.

Over the past 40 years the men of this country have put their material objects and addictions before the well being of the women and children by kowtowing to every special interest group in this country in the name of "political correctness" or for government hand outs. Our nation was built by men who were self-reliant, independent and strong. Today they are tolerant, sensitive and genuflect at the feet of perverts called "gays." Why is this?

The men of this country have laid down their arms in favor of political correctness, declaring open season for two-legged predators on their women and children. Instead of surrounding their state capitols armed to the teeth in defiance of such unconstitutional machinations on the part of cowardly and mentally impaired politicians, instead they grovel on their knees to the likes of Diane Feinstein. This sad state of affairs was unheard of in 1905. Why this inability to resist tyranny now?

PC is a cancer on this nation that has turned a Godly nation into a moral sewer. These men have put their children in harms way via mandatory social indoctrination in the anti-God public school system. Why is this?

The men of this country will go to extraordinary lengths to find the right fishing hole, but they refuse to lift a finger to ensure that their women and children will not be forced into global citizenship under the UN. Why is this?

The men of this country will sit in front of the computer playing games while women and children in different parts of this country are being driven off the land by Nazi-style federal agencies. So what if their fellow countryman will lose his land, his wife and children thrown out into the street? After all, those families in Klamath Falls and too many other places have nothing to do with these other men's lives, so why should they give up any of their free time to stand up to the government to help them? Why is this?

Women in this country spend hundreds of millions of dollars every year on "romance books" whose pages are filled with knights in shining armor and genuine heroes coming to rescue the damsel in distress. Why do you suppose that is?

Why do you suppose the men are allowing their women and children to be put at risk in all the ways described above?

Why are the women the ones out there on the front lines battling this government tooth and nail for our children - ready and willing to die if necessary to protect our own?

Because America has lost it's manhood.

TOPICS: Editorial
KEYWORDS: democrat; men; politics; republican
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Because America has lost it's manhood.

WOW! That really hit it on the head.

1 posted on 11/02/2002 6:10:10 AM PST by Pern
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To: Pern
The Unwelcome Truth
2 posted on 11/02/2002 6:20:34 AM PST by Ahban
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To: thelastonestanding
3 posted on 11/02/2002 6:21:22 AM PST by Ahban
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Comment #4 Removed by Moderator

To: Pern
Over the past 40 years, the men of this country have sat back and allowed themselves to be brow beaten into submission and castrated by so-called "feminists" like Rosie O'Donnell and Hillary Clinton (although I defy anyone to show me one single feminine attribute of those females) instead of stand up and saying, "Hell No!"

The bottom line.

5 posted on 11/02/2002 6:33:45 AM PST by BuddhaBoy
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To: coteblanche
Why is our "Man" asking permission to attack evil?
Why does our military service need to order stop loss measures to keep soldiers from getting out?
Why our we short of recruits? 40% of the Army is female.
6 posted on 11/02/2002 6:45:59 AM PST by earplug
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To: Pern
Over the past 40 years, the men of this country have sat back and allowed themselves to be brow beaten into submission and castrated by so-called "feminists" like Rosie O'Donnell and Hillary Clinton...

The problems faced by men today have nothing to do with anything as recent as feminism, but with the age-old tendency of men to sell each other out for a piece of butt. IMHO, trying to get some woman to put out is why male judges still shaft men in divorce and child custody cases and why male police officers don't arrest women for attacking men. Anyone care to dispute that?

How it must gall them that the only way lesbians can "impregnate" their female lovers is artificial insemination by a male sperm.

On the contrary, I'll bet they are laughing their tails off at how men have slavishly contributed to their own elimination. If anything, its men who are galled that women can have babies without them because of this.

7 posted on 11/02/2002 6:54:32 AM PST by Balto_Boy
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To: Balto_Boy
...but with the age-old tendency of men to sell each other out for a piece of butt.

LOL! I would have put it more bluntly, but you're right. Women (god love em'!) are the man's overall objective, driving force.

Man buys a flashy new car. Why? To attract women.

May educates himself to get good job. Why? To attract women.

And on, and on......

8 posted on 11/02/2002 7:00:34 AM PST by Pern
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To: Pern
"Today the men of this country will allow a sleezy, morally bankrupt individual like Bill Clinton get away with treason (selling our most sensitive national defense secrets to the Communist Chinese) because Clinton supports their women's "right" to kill their unborn babies."

That's really unfair. The majority of voters that put X42 into office were women. In fact, in 1996, after it was disclosed that the 'Toon was a rapist, two out of three of the voters who put him BACK into office were women.

Go figure.

9 posted on 11/02/2002 7:19:26 AM PST by nightdriver
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To: Pern
George W. Bush: A real man.
10 posted on 11/02/2002 7:25:37 AM PST by backslacker
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To: Pern
C'mon...tell us how you REALLY feel!
11 posted on 11/02/2002 7:28:27 AM PST by JimRed
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To: Pern
Remembering the Sinking of the H.M.S. Birkenhead

If you were a school child growing up in the second half of the 19th century, then you knew the story of the H.M.S. Birkenhead. You knew that on February 27, 1852, a British vessel carrying more than 600 women and children hit a ledge and foundered. You knew that the men chose to drown or be eaten by sharks rather than even risk the possibility that the women and children aboard the few life boats available would risk danger. You knew these facts, and they served as an ever-present reminder that you lived in a world created by God in which men are called upon to act sacrificially on behalf of women and children, even as Christ died on behalf of His bride.

On this February 27, 2002, more than 400 people gathered on the coastline near Danger Point, the spot where so many men had died 150 years to the day, to hear once again the story of heroism and Christian manhood -- a theme poignantly described by Kipling as "The Birkenhead Drill."

The following is an excerpt of a testimony from one of the few Birkenhead survivors who escaped death by drowning and shark attack through a blessed providence of God. Particularly touching is the fact that though the events of February 26, 1852 seem as clear to him at the time of his writing commentary as when they occurred fifty years prior, God had given him peace knowing that the Birkenhead men acted to preserve the life of women and children.

Doug Phillips


I am an old man -- old in body, if you like, but young in memory and spirit, and I can still march with some of the best of them, in spite of my seventy-five years. I can recall many things that I did in my long years of soldiering on home and foreign-service, and can picture many scenes that my eyes have witnessed.

But one event stands out with awful clearness, one memory will linger when all other impressions vanish, and I parade for the last muster -- and that is, the picture of the sinking on the Birkenhead. From time to time the papers tell us that the only survivor of the troopship has died -- that neither man not woman nor child who was in her when she struck on Danger Point, and broke her back and sank, is left: but some of us die hard, and there is still a handful of officers and men who were hurled into a shark-infested sea in the darkness of an early morning, and heard the last hopeless cries of soldiers as the steamer disappeared. Aye, and worse than that -- the wails and screams of heartbroken wives who had been torn from husbands' arms and the piteous cries of little children who were forced into the boats and rowed away, leaving to a sure and awful death those who were sacrificed that they might live.

The old King of Prussia commanded that the story of the Birkenhead drill and fortitude should be read to every regiment in his army; artists have painted pictures of the troops drawn up in steady ranks on deck, and poets have sung of the way the bugles rang and the drums beat; but there was no sound of bugle and no roll of drum; there was none of the stiffness of parade which pictures show -- and yet there was a falling-in, a last muster, a standing shoulder to shoulder as the end came, and many a handshake and many a sobbed farewell. And how, at such a time, can even the bravest do otherwise, swept, as they were swept, from perfect peace and comfort to an unexpected doom?

Sometimes, aye, often, I wake suddenly from sleep, or start up as I smoke in my little cottage in the quite country, and wonder whether the vision that has come again is only dreaming or reality; and I have to take my papers out and cast my mind back over the half century before I am satisfied that I have not imagined it. The whole terrible catastrophe returns as fresh and vivid now as it was then -- for such a thing as that makes the same scar in your memory as an ugly wound will leave upon your body -- and I know what both are.

I am in the old regiment again, the 12th Foot, which became the Suffolk when it lost its number, and I am back in the early fifties, when the British soldier's duty was to obey every order, without wondering, as they do nowadays, why it was given and whether it was right. They were the days of iron discipline and not overmuch consideration for the private soldier, who was still only a machine for fighting purposes.

There is a strong draft of us of the 12th for the Cape, where we are going out to fight the Kaffirs, and there are drafts for other regiments -- Lancers, Highlanders, and Rifles amongst them.

On January 7th, 1852, we embark in the Birkenhead and sail for the Cape. We are in a famous ship, for the Birkenhead is of big size for her day, and has already made the run to the Cape in forty-five days, while other vessels in the Navy have been as long as sixty-five. Think of that, you soldiers of to day, who grumble because your steamer takes a month -- but very rarely -- to do the same distance.

But, after all, we are cooped up in a ship that is no bigger than many a fine ocean-going tug nowadays. She is not much more than two hundred feet long, but broad of beam and of nearly fifteen hundred tons. She has engines of 564 horsepower, and is of course driven by paddles. She has been made from a frigate into a steamer and a heavy poop and forecastle have been added to her to increase her accommodations as a troopship. Even then we are packed like sardines in a box, and have to eat and sleep and get through the time as best we can, and trouble nothing about the many little comforts we enjoy ashore.

We start at a bad time of the year, and after leaving Cork run into a lot of heavy weather that puts the crowning touch to our miseries afloat. Life and death are both with us at sea, just as they are ashore. The weary days go past and the only thing that marks one from its fellows is a birth or a death. One woman dies of consumption, and our spirits are depressed by the awful solemnity of her burial at sea. Three children are born -- but at what a cost! Each mother dies -- and what more striking evidence can you have of what it meant for women to sail in troopships fifty years ago?

How vividly that final run comes back again over the half century that has passed! The seas are calm and the night is clear, the daylight quickly fades and gives place to a glorious darkness. The lights are twinkling ashore, a grateful sight to us who have been so long surrounded by the tumbling seas. The stars too are shining brightly.

All is well.

From time to time as we thud bravely on from the Atlantic to the Indian Ocean we hear the sullen murmur of the surf that breaks ashore about two miles away, rising above the ever-present roar of the machinery which we no longer notice. A good look-out is kept, the leadsman is in the chains, and the watch on deck have little else to do but watch the lights glide past as the Birkenhead makes nearly ten miles an hour. The captain of the ship, Captain Salmond has gone below, so has the commander, and the Birkenhead is in charge of Mr. Davies, second master.

I go below at last and turn in, never so much as thinking of danger. I discuss the latest news with my comrades. The gossip is that Captain Salmond is pressing the ship hard for two reasons, one of which is that he wants to get ahead of the streamer Styx, which is carrying stores of war, and the other that he wishes to make a quick passage so that he can land the troops for the Commander-in-Chief, who is concentrating his forces for a grand attack upon the natives. And so that he may make his run as short as possible Captain Salmond is keeping very near the coast.

We have gone to sleep on the crowded lower deck. Midnight has passed, one o'clock comes and goes, and the ship's bell strikes again. But I do not hear the strokes of the melancholy voice that rises in the night and proclaims that all is well. I am fast asleep and unconscious.

What is that? Why this appalling shock? Why these terrible cries, this sudden panic, this staggering confusion? Why are men crowding and struggling and all making as if by instinct for the companion-ladder, to swarm on deck?

Why ask the question, for we know, even we who are landsmen, that the Birkenhead has struck; we know that even now some of her people are dead, drowned in their hammocks by the rush of the sea upon them.

I do what my fellow soldiers do, what nearly every soul on board does -- struggle to the upper deck and clamor to know the worst. There are others like me, rushing up and crowding the deck -- small space indeed for so many human beings. And it is dark, too.

What need to ask the question which the simplest soul on board can answer? The ship has struck on a sunken rock, and not even her watertight compartments, of which she has no fewer than a dozen, can save her. The Birkenhead with her resistless weight driving hard has been impaled upon a cruel submerged fang, and she is ripped just as you might rip a drum of paper with your finger.

Panic, you ask? Confusion? Yes -- both. And how can it be otherwise when like a flash, sentence of death has been passed upon the Birkenhead, and in the twinkling of an eye serenity and safety have given place to overwhelming peril?

There are times when even the bravest of the brave succumb to their emotions. Was not the Iron Duke himself overcome with grief at the loss of so many of his troops at Waterloo? No wonder, then that the men of the Birkenhead are in want of steadying when the first shock of the disaster falls upon them. Remember that most of them are very young -- and then there are the men whose wives and children are on board. Put yourself in their places, then you will understand.

Even now, with the ship abruptly stopped, with that awful sound of rending asunder in our ears, it seems impossible to believe that she is doomed. How can she be, the stout vessel that has borne us so far through such troubled waters without disaster of any sort? And so near the shore, too?

I know that even now, so far as I am personally concerned, there is no suspicion that the end will be what it proves to be. I see that things are bad; I am aware that already many lives are lost; but there are the boats, the coast is very close to us, and above all things, there is the discipline -- that spirit of obedience that proves stronger than the love of life itself.

I have spoken of the panic, the confusion. They have been born suddenly, but their death is just as swift. Now come the excited voices of the officers -- the men who are heard in the darkness, but are not seen. It is 'Steady, lads, steady!' and if there is a tremor in the tones -- what of it? If at the first, before the drafts have found themselves, there is something of a rush for the boats, what of that, either? Does not the panic die away at the word of command? Is not the rush stopped at the very outset? Do not the men make some pitiful attempt to fall in on that sloping deck, which is already breaking under their very feet?

And why? Because there are women and children on board, and the women and children are to be saved, whatever happens to the rest.

I seem to tell the story slowly; but however fast I spoke I could not do more than talk haltingly of a thing that happened with such fatal swiftness.

Lieutenant-Colonel Seton, of the 74th Highlanders, commanding the troops on board, gathers all the officers about him, and tells them that at any cost order and discipline must be maintained. He specially charges Captain Wright of the 91st to see that Captain Salmond's instructions are obeyed, because on him alone, as a sailor, we can depend for safety.

Instantly sixty men are told off to work the chain-pumps on the lower deck, and I am one of the sixty. I go below again, and the stoutest heart might shrink from such a task. It is like descending into a dark well, for the water is already flooding the deck. But we strike out for the pumps, and in reliefs we man them and work with frantic energy. We might as well spare all our strength, because we do not make the least impression on the flood. How can we, with such a yawn in the troopship's side? Sea has been caught on the port side, between the foremast and the paddle-box, and the waves sweep in just like a heavy running stream.

We are up to our waists in water; but we work away at the pumps, cheering each other, saying that we shall soon be out of it and landed. But within touch of us are men drowned in their hammocks.

Officers are everywhere, steadying, encouraging, and directing. The rest of the troops are on the poop, and the women and children are there, too, drawn up in readiness to be put into one of the boats, the cutter.

Blue lights are burning, making a ghastly illumination in the darkness, and rockets crash on the stillness of the night. But no answer comes to our signals of distress. The lights are not seen, and the sound of rockets does not carry far.

What of the guns? You ask. Aye, guns would have boomed deeper, and could have been heard ashore; but we cannot fire them, because the ammunition is in the magazine, and the magazine is under water now, so that it is impossible to reach it.

Captain Salmond, like the brave commander he is, tries to repair his terrible mistake of hugging the coast too closely, and he forgets himself entirely in his wish to save his people -- always the women and children first, remember. We hear his voice as he issues orders -- he swings a lantern in his hand -- and we know that the engines that are still workable have been turned astern.

Fatal error again! And this time final. There is more hideous grinding and tearing, and the rent in the hull is made bigger as the Birkenhead is backed. There is a mightier inrush of the sea and a furious hissing, as the boiler fires are drowned. But for the present we have no orders to leave our places, and we work unflaggingly at the useless pumps.

On deck they are throwing the horses overboard -- the few officers' chargers that the troopship carries; and the women and the children are being driven and helped into the cutter. Can you understand what it means -- that tearing away of wives and children from husbands and fathers -- unhappy creatures that beg that they may die with their own loved ones rather than be saved without them?

Sixty men are at the chain-pumps; sixty more are struggling to lower the paddle-box boats. The other boats, too, are being handled.

What happens? The tackle is rotten, the boats themselves are ill-found and in bad condition, so that the very means by which alone we can hope for safety are not to be relied upon in our desperate extremity. In this furious effort to get the boats away, Mr. Brodie, the master, and a number of men are lost.

There is a long swell running towards the shore and the Birkenhead is rolling heavily, her foremast is tottering, her funnel is threatening to collapse. It leans dangerously over towards the starboard side, and as the fight with the boats goes on the smokestack thunders down and crushes a little host of human beings on the paddle-box.

Everything now happens with paralyzing swiftness. The funnel has fallen -- a great high mass of metal; the foremast has come down, and the Birkenhead herself has snapped in two, her fore part dropping down into deep water and her stern tilting high in the air.

Half a hundred men perish instantly at the chain-pumps, and those who do not die rush up to the deck to hear the orders given that all who can swim must jump overboard and make for the boats, which have got clear and are waiting at a safe distance so that they shall not be drawn down into the vortex.

The order is given by Captain Salmond, but other voices are heard immediately -- Captain Wright's and Captain Girador's -- begging that the men will stand fast, as the boats are full already with the women and children and will be swamped if the soldiers make for them.

Discipline again! And always the women and children! The men stand fast, in the very grip of certain death, and not more than two or three jump overboard and try to reach the boat, which safely gets away.

During the whole of this time, the agonies of which no man can describe, Cornet Bond, of the 12th Lancers, and Ensign Lucas, of the 73rd, have been superintending the removal of the women and children to the boat, and handing some of them to the gangway with a politeness and attention which is so wonderful that, sore as my own strait is, I cannot help smiling.

Cornet Bond, you say is still alive -- now Captain R.M. Bond Shelton -- and you have met and talked with him? Then he has an old Birkenhead soldier's best wishes for continued life as a gallant officer and gentleman! Of Ensign Lucas I can speak myself, because I lived to serve under him. Here is a letter from him, sent to me only the other month, and a box of cigars, 'for all old soldiers smoke,' he says.

Not twenty minutes have passed since we were sleeping peacefully and safely; now, with terrible noises, the troopship disappears, settling on the rock that has destroyed her, and with only her mainmast rising above the water.

For some minutes there is a scene that I cannot picture, there are sounds that I dare not recall; then there is something of quietness, because the sea has claimed most of these desperate bidders for existence. Where am I now? What new terror has been added to this great tragedy of a sailor's mistake?

I am overboard and in the water, clinging to a spar, a bit of wreckage that I have reached, I know not how. I have rushed on deck in my shirt and greatcoat, just as I have been roused from sleep, and in this clothing I am adrift in the Indian Ocean, a non-swimmer, and doomed to an eighteen hours struggle in the sea to keep myself alive. I do not know that my fight will not be for so long or so terrible, or I could never see it through; but I still have faith in my salvation, and grip my spar and look about for help.

And what do I see -- what do I hear?

All around me are men who have been hurled to a pitiless death, some struggling fiercely, and some clinging to any floating object from the wreck. There are awful sounds which I come to know well as the last groans or screams of men who sink to rise no more -- and still more terrifying outbreaks which I do not for the moment understand, but the cause of which I quickly learn. They are the hopeless victims who are seized and killed by sharks. Remember, we are in the southern waters, in the southern summer, and the Indian Ocean thereabouts is swarming with these cruel monsters.

And yet, in all that time of suffering and terror, I am strangely undisturbed in mind. I cannot swim, but I have my spar to keep me up, and the knowledge that I am so near land is wonderfully comforting and helpful. I have a feeling too, that, having escaped so far, when so many have been swept to death, I shall be saved at last -- and the conviction grows upon me even as the number of my comrades lessens.

Picture for yourself the long-drawn agony of those hours of darkness, in spite of all this, hope fills me, and the senses which are growing dulled; and imagine, if you can, the scene when the night is passing, and the tropic dawn comes quickly.

The daylight shows me dangers that the gloom has mercifully hidden. The mainmast of the sunken Birkenhead shoots upwards from the sea, and its spars and rigging are crowded with men, clinging, fly-like, to the ropes and timbers. With bits of mast and wood from the deck, trusses of hay, cabin furniture, and anything and everything that will float, men are holding their heads above water, casting yearning glances towards the shore which is so near and yet so far, and always looking for a sight of sail or help.

What is that strange object which is moving stealthily and swiftly through the water near me? It disappears suddenly, and I know that it is the fin of a shark, which has turned on his back for his savage and always sure attack. There is a piercing cry, and a tingeing red of the sea -- and the number of survivors is lessened. Time after time that awful drama is played, and the senses are dulled until even such a death is robbed of terror.

Yet even now I cannot help wondering why some are taken and some are left by these monsters of the deep. I do know -- and I am thankful for it -- that they do not molest me, nor throughout my stay in the water does a shark so much as make a rush at me. They say that the sharks that night and day seized mostly those who were naked, while I had still my greatcoat on, and I keep it on for some time. But it goes at last.

The hours pass slowly, and I am parched with thirst; but I do not let the hope within me die. I am drifting to the land, inch by inch only, because I am held a prisoner in a mass of sea bamboo, which is worse than any weed, and proves the death of many a poor fellow who might otherwise escape. It is like a floating jungle. Through this enveloping obstruction I and my spar are driven by the tide towards the coast, and at last I am within a stone's throw of the land.

All this time the men, exhausted, are dropping from the mast into the sea, and are letting go their frail supports; but I am absorbed in my own position, full of my own miseries, able only to think of my own salvation. I have reached the limit of my endurance, and am the plaything only of the sullen swells that roll ashore.

And now, just when salvation seems assured, I am met by my greatest danger. I am hurled into the heavy surf, which is like to break or crush me. It is as if the ruthless sea was making one last effort to claim me, who have defied it so long, and is determined to wrench me from my spar. But I struggle desperately still, and at last, just after sundown, I am thrown, like flotsam on the beach, bruised and bleeding, hungry, thirsty, almost senseless, utterly exhausted, and stripped of every scrap of clothing -- after eighteen hours in the remorseless sea.

I lie where the waves have thrown me, caring nothing, and fall into a log-like sleep till morning, when I join some of my unhappy comrades who have been saved also.

There -- that is my old man's story. What else is there to tell? What else can there be?

I join my regiment, and march and fight as if there had been no Birkenhead disaster. It is soldiering -- and it is discipline.

Yes, that all-conquering discipline -- for of all the women and children not one is lost.

Because of that, and because we obeyed -- I and the rest of us are satisfied.

Corporal W. Smith

12 posted on 11/02/2002 7:30:08 AM PST by ppaul
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To: JimRed
C'mon...tell us how you REALLY feel!

Devvy Kidd wrote it.

13 posted on 11/02/2002 7:36:30 AM PST by Mark17
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To: coteblanche
"Horsefeathers!!!! I need only look at the 'man' who is leading America, and the 'men' who are fighting to preserve our freedom,..."

While that may be, the 'men' you're referring to are too few and far between. Fact is, this article is quite accurate, I'm sorry to say. I know this will 'offend' some people, but we didn't have this problem when America as a nation put God first.

14 posted on 11/02/2002 7:37:20 AM PST by Paulie
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To: earplug
Why does our military service need to order stop loss measures to keep soldiers from getting out?

Because or service men and women are over worked and grossely underpaid, because they are asked to leave their families for long periods of time but are over looked everytime congress passes a bill to give themselves a raise, because most people in the service e-5 and below are living close to and under the poverty level in America. Because our troops when stationed at home are not treated with any respect. They are looked down upon by the communities surrounding their bases (I can only speak of pre 9/11 experience since I have not dealt with the service and the public since then).

15 posted on 11/02/2002 7:41:43 AM PST by scab4faa
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To: Pern
It's all the men's fault. Women and minorities to suffer the most,while remaining blameless. That about sums it up,right?
16 posted on 11/02/2002 7:50:55 AM PST by sneakypete
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Comment #17 Removed by Moderator

To: Pern
Why are the women the ones out there on the front lines battling this government tooth and nail for our children - ready and willing to die if necessary to protect our own?

Because America has lost it's manhood.

Romans 10:17.........and Romans chapter 1 (one),......all of it!

18 posted on 11/02/2002 8:00:29 AM PST by maestro
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To: Pern
What a true and powerful statement. America has lost its manhood. I want the old fashioned men back. I'm NOT talking about the borish,idiot types who think they are God's gift to women type of men.

I am speaking of REAL men. Men who are protectors of their who respect women, men who love their wives, men who love their children, men who go out there and work hard for their families and men who love God and their country.

Oh yes, that's the kind of manhood we so desperately need once again.
19 posted on 11/02/2002 8:02:14 AM PST by cubreporter
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To: ppaul
Bookmarked! Thank you ppaul !
20 posted on 11/02/2002 8:05:34 AM PST by RipeforTruth
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