They're Just Above Us
As a young man wandered under a Lorgues' government building, he appeared absorbed in thought. With his head down, he likely failed to notice an engraved inscription high above his eyes. While he may have known about them given that he was born into a free society, he might have also taken them for granted. Don't most of us accept our personal freedoms as a natural part of being alive?
My mind then drifted to the possibility that more than two hundred years ago, this young man's ancestors might also have fought and died for French equality. As I noticed the three etched words in the edifice's granite gable: Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité, I felt how easy freedom feels. Like nature, like thinking, like breathing, freedom is a natural state of being. Being easy, it is not difficult imagining freedoms as well as democratic societies taking basic human rights for granted. Alas, my thoughts soon wandered to American liberties where every ethnic minority has had their conflict(s).
Even in the 21st century, societies continues to struggle. Upholding and defending basic human rights and liberties are constant battles. Once achieved, freedoms need to be guarded. So vigilance about how we humans protect our freedom is essential. Otherwise, we can be ind ourselves asleep by assuming these freedoms will always exist. History has too many examples of revolutions overthrowing tyrants and despots. Liberties still must be fought for and defended against. As long as some people feel entitled to control freedoms, there will always be conflict with liberties.
So how does our day trip to a French marketplace relate to freedoms? A happiness, an energetic attitude and a festival fervor all contributed to the congenial and gracious atmosphere. A sense of freedom was almost one of theof the people. You would have to experience it to know the sensation.
As Lainie and I strolled through Lorgues' extensive marketplace, we passed many townspeople: vendors, customers, townspeople, tourists, but no trains. Enjoying a day of shopping in the light of free society. As we followed the mass of humanity, I saw this wondrous exchange of goods and civility as an exuberant symbol of a free and vibrant society. Some wistful hope for America and her struggles with difference While our 21st century peaceful stroll on a glorious October fall day took us through the throngs of French citizens and tourists, we literally walked along a route free of traffic, tracks and trains.
As Lainie and I strolled through Lorgues' extensive marketplace, we passed many townspeople: vendors and customers. As we followed the town's main street of humanity, I witnessed not only a wondrous exchange of goods and services but also an exuberant symbols and signs of a free and vibrant society. The enthusiasm felt so palpable between vendors and customers that the day felt as if it was offering freedom as a commodity. After conversing with some residents, I got the impression that the real motto was more liberté, égalité, rosé. ....which might explain the numerous smiles and frequent bouts of spontaneous laughter.