Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Sound of Freedom

We just had an airshow here on Cape Cod. That phrase, "the sound of freedom," has been bandied about even more than usual.

To be honest, the airshow itself... huge crowds, earsplitting noise, bad food, impenetrable traffic, searing heat from sun and pavement... sounds like hell on earth to me. Planes just aren't my thing, though I do appreciate in a detached sort of way how cool they are, how amazing the technology, how deeply impressive their thundering overhead, especially in those tight formations (wow). Given a chance to check them out up close without the crowds, noise, traffic, and heat, I definitely would, and it would rock.

But here's a question. Please know I'm not trying to be coy. Though disinclined to air shows, I'm not anti-military. I'm proud of those who defend our country, and truly admire their strength and skills. I just wonder, because every time I hear the phrase, something about it rings kind of naive to me...

How are military aircraft screaming overhead the sound of freedom?

I know... "freedom isn't free," and this is how we ensure it. But that's why it strikes me more as a sound of grim necessity. Wouldn't true freedom be not needing it to be heard?

When the aircraft pass overhead, I am certainly impressed. It can be exhilerating. But I don't associate it with freedom, because there's something terrible (in the old sense of the word) about it as well, that makes me feel distinctly less free.

Just thinking out loud.

Different kinds of freedom, I suppose... freedom to, and freedom of, and freedom from.


  1. don't youknow?4:35 PM, August 28, 2007

    the "sound of freedom" crap is just chest beating.

  2. When I was knee high to a cicada, my parents would take us to see the Blue Angels when they performed near our town (I'm a Califronia transplant) and I loved it...

    Now as an adult whenever I see an airshow it takes me back to when I didn't have sooo many responsibilities.

  3. "Freedom"'s just another word for "incomprehensibly huge government spending program".

  4. I've seen the Blue Angels online. Very, very impressive. Those pilots have nerves of steel.

    Government spending program, ayuh. Brings to mind the bumper sticker about what a great day it'll be when the schools have all the money they need and the air force has to have bake sales to build new toys.

    Not that I altogether feel that way. But it comes to mind.