Have you ever stood strong when fear was all around?
I mean, did you actually stand tall while others fell to the ground?
Have you ever done what common sense said not to do?
Even when others ran and said, “Come on man, do not be a fool.”
Has fear ever gripped you so tightly you had to concentrate just to breathe?
I am talking about the kind of fear that brings even the strongest men down to their knees.
Have you ever had to remain calm and lead others to a safe place;
while fear was clouding your judgment and causing your heart to race?
Have you ever been so engulfed by fear that 48 hours passed without you missing a single beat?
Heck, I almost went three days on just two hours of sleep.
Have you ever thought, this could actually be the last breath I take; because death was all around you with no room for error, absolutely no room for a leadership mistake?
Have you ever been so frozen by fear that you just did not know what to do?
I have, but I had to go on because 237 Soldiers were looking at me to lead them through.
See, fear in the face of leaders could destroy the will of many people;
while fear that goes un-faced could become deadly and extremely lethal.
Ok, well have you ever had to give an order that even you were afraid to carry out yourself?
I mean, a command so crazy you would not do it for all the world’s wealth?
Have you ever had to send someone out on a mission you knew they may not complete?
That would be one of those nights were this leader did not get any sleep.
Have you ever had to give CPR to someone who worked for you?
Well, I worked on Specialist Sierra for over one hour but he just did not pull through.
Have you ever had to carry the body of someone who saved your life?
The whole time I was thinking, what in the world am I going to tell his wife?
Have you ever had to tell someone that her loved one was no longer alive?
Trust me, you can actually see her heart breaking through the tears flowing from her eyes.
Have you ever stood over a person who was dead due to an order you gave?
Look, do not stand too close at the funeral because you might want to jump into his grave.
Have you ever had to stand before a grieving family? Yes, it is completely sad.
Their Soldier gave his life for his country and all I had to give them back was a U.S. Flag!
I am a leader of Soldiers because that is what I was called to do, and just for the record,
I am not telling you this to prove anything to any of you.
Most people just do not understand a true combat Soldier, warrior, and leader.
Well, here are some insights for all you poetry writers and readers.
How did you feel when the World Trade Center fell, the Pentagon got hit, and those planes hijacked?
This leader was devastated! Thousands dead on my watch, and it was my job to prevent those attacks.
You really do not understand the sacrifices we have made for the armed forces.
Heck, I have missed birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, and been through a couple of divorces.
We learn loyalty, honor, and respect for the U.S., for government, and for freedom, but we actually fight for our fellow Soldiers, you would understand if you ever took the time to meet them.
So yes, I have faced fears for you and even for those that act like complete jerks,
because failure is just not an option for me in my line of work!
I am a descendent from kings, forced into slavery, then turned into a Soldier so here is my quote,
Brothers “I fought for this country before I had the right to vote.”
I am the Buffalo Soldier who fought the Indians and settled the west.
Absent from those history books, it was my blood, sweat, and hard work that helped build the U.S.
I bravely charged up San Juan Hill and was later discredited in the press;
because racism would not let the world view me as this nation’s best.
I am that courageous hard-working Sailor who signed up at that local rally;
to learn I could only serve my country from deep in the ship’s galley.
I am that black flier who defied all odds to fly, fight, and win.
Well, you may have heard them say that I am one of those Red Tail, Tuskegee Airmen.
I fought in all the U.S.’s conflicts to include two world wars to stop global oppression,
but it was not until the Korean War when we overcame segregation.
The media and the public want you to call me a hero,
but you treated my Vietnam brothers, those Soldiers, like complete zeros.
Those Vietnam Warriors followed orders, fought with honor, and had no regret,
but when they came home, they came home to your insults, no cheers, just total disrespect.
Well, this leader has faced his fears through multiple wars in the Middle-East.
So, I salute those Soldiers dealing with fear right now because they allow us to enjoy reading poetry in peace!
James Mr. Speaker Sears