I am a member of the generation now exiting the stage. We have seen a lot of life from our seat in the stadium. I belong to a coffee group with eleven potential attendees and I think the average age is about ninety. All of us are veterans and three (we recently lost two) are WW2 veterans. Our productive days are gone and we visit about the past, the way we were and of course todays problems. As you can guess we are mostly a conservative group and do not comprehend what is happening to our country. The entire motion appears to be superficial. Is there any agenda past hatred and destruction? Is there a plan for a future government? If so, is it socialism and the destructive chaos that always follows? We don't understand.

Recently, some people seem to have a problem with our original flag attributed to Betsy Ross. Do you remember the national news (last year) about the Lawrence artist, her flag desecration art and the national editorials that followed? We were expected to reflect on ourselves and our country so we can understand her "justifiable" anger. "Her work should tell us something — not about the flag, but what the flag actually represents. It tells us something about ourselves and our country." Their problem escapes me. In writing this I am well aware of dreadful racial atrocities of the past. As a nation are we forever to be condemned as evil by some - and by the actions of some? The Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville wrote "America is great because America is good. When America ceases to be good, it will no longer be great." We are good and we are great!

I am upset and saddened by the destruction of our culture, our way of life and possibly our country. Destruction seems to be the agenda for a large segment of our population. They know not for what they wish . I have children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and the number is increasing. I want to leave them a culture, an economy and country worth living in.

Most of the articles I write are categorized as "History," "The Way We Were" or "Rambling Recollections." I hope to record and convey to younger generations a glimpse of a time, a culture and way of life from our seat in the stadium — a time they can never experience. Those were the good old days? The good came from our optimism, unity and faith in the future. We could visualize the distant light of opportunity and with work, the endless possibilities. We knew we had problems and a long way to go but the only way was up and we felt we were truly a united and great country. Our generation can get quite emotional about our faith, love for our country - and its flag. I hope you can share our gratefulness for this great country and its people.

Bud Dalton, Hays, writes an occasional column for The Hays Daily news.