Watching today’s news can be discouraging.  Today, as we approach the birthday of our nation, we are watching the conflict about whether or not to pull down the Mt. Soledad Cross because that would indicate that our country is a Christian nation. Wouldn’t you like to encourage some people to go back and read their history, the birth of America. At what point did we stop taking pride in being a Christian nation?

“Today,” I am told, “is the father of tomorrow.”  At the rate we’re going it’s a little bit frightening to think about what tomorrow will be for our young people. On the other hand, watching the news again, witnessing the hundreds of young people being sent, alone, to the shores of America in the hope of a future for them. I don’t have the answer how we should deal with these young people but it is interesting when we read about the trouble our country has experienced to realize that, for these young people and their families, America is their answer to a future.

Another story that I read about is the family approached by our local electric company’s plans to spray the right of way. They were surprised that they had that option. A few years after I moved out to my timbered 20 acres out Wilderness Way, new neighbors bought property past my house — no one had lived there before and they were excited, moving from a city in Oklahoma to their own 40 acres, 40 acres of timber, ticks and chiggers but it was theirs! They checked with all whose property adjoined theirs in an effort to seek permission to gain access, to cross property to them providing them with electricity.

After a period of time when I realized it was a problem, I told our electric company they could cross my property but no spraying. I got it in writing and when I sold the property years later they had never sprayed under the electric poles that were on my property. It’s a fact. Good reasons to spray, and good reasons not to spray. I still have the signed papers and, even though I haven’t owned the property now for 20 years I still have the paper and the mineral right,  for what it’s worth. I really don’t expect a gold rush or any other kind of rush on that property but I have the paper just in case.

These are just some of the reasons that we can take pride in: You own your  property here.  Not like some states where all is owned by the government—you can lease it (like Hawaii and some of Colorado). You own it, it’s yours, and under your control. Just one of many reasons, certainly, that makes America so different, so special, and Missouri even more so, and especially, this land that has my heart and always will, this McDonald County.

Consequently, even though the news can be depressing, the stories we hear disturbing, there are many things in our area that make us glad we are somewhat different, unique, obstinate at times, maybe, but special.

Learn more about this area. You are invited to the Historic Courthouse on the square in Pineville. Come to McDonald County Historical Museum – no charge, you are invited to drop in, Friday and Saturday (even July 4) 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.  If you would like to write, McDonald County Historical Society, P.O. Box 572, Pineville, 64856 or find us on Facebook / our web page, or, call (when open, or leave a message) at 417-223-7700. Hoping to share our history, we look forward to meeting you.

Alberta Anders writes a weekly column for the Daily News.