Why was it here, in this sparsely populated and mountainous stretch of the Hudson River, that a cluster of colonies fighting to become a new nation sunk in its roots and decided to establish its most vital fortress?
A good deal of attention was given yesterday to Sen. Ted Cruz's (R-TX) fake-filibuster. Lost in all the zany hoopla, however, was a point I found utterly remarkable, yet wasn't addressed by any reporters that I heard.
The United States was not perfect when it began, and it is still far from perfect today. However, if one constantly writes off America because of its failings in the past or present, then one misses the general point: America was born a nation to perpetually move forward.
When the Declaration of Independence was drafted on July 4, 1776, religious practice in the 13 colonies of the United States was colorful and varied. The quest for independence -- as well as loyalist resistance to the cause -- permeated church life and teachings across denominational lines.
I love a good story. I especially love a good story if it's true. And most of all, I love a good story if it's true, and it's about my family. History comes alive for me when I can imagine my own relatives living in different times and places, connected to me, and yet unknown in so many ways.
We live in a time of constant debate and discussion about political and military media coverage. So, now is perhaps the best time to study media coverage of the American Revolution and the birth of the United States.
The American experience with war acts like a civil religion -- a way for Americans to affirm and assess national ideals for which generations have been called to give their last full measure of devotion. It is a glorious, dangerous, heroic, terrifying cross to bear.
Ever since we'd first learned about the Revolutionary War in fourth grade, I'd wanted to visit the sites where the events had occurred. So I showed up early, camera-in-hand, to visit the Freedom Trail, a very high priority on my "Must-See" list.