Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day 

I believe I'm sensing a trend in the national consciousness that I regard as a good thing: people are paying more attention to the reason we have Memorial Day. Maybe it's because I'm older and don't hang with the party crowd anymore. Maybe not. In any event, I think I'm hearing and seeing more people paying respect and giving honor to those who have fought and died so that our country can be as great as it is.

Anyone who's read this blog for a long time knows that my dad was a career soldier. He was a medic with bad eyesight, and as such was never sent into combat, although in Korea and especially in Vietnam he was in harm's way. I thank him for his service, as I thank my two sons for theirs. While growing up I got a first-hand look at who our military people are. The draft was in effect then so there was probably more of a cross-section, but I am convinced that today's military are pretty much the same as the ones I knew, except more motivated, which one would expect from an all-volunteer force. What I saw, and what I see now, are (for by far the most part) good American kids from all walks of life, who take pride in themselves and in their country, and who are prepared to do what it takes to complete the mission successfully. Not much different, really, from those who don't enlist, but what differences there are derive from a strong love of country and a recognition that liberty must be defended--it doesn't come without cost. That recognition is what all those we honor today knew in their hearts, and they had the courage and the mettle to act on that belief.

God bless them all, and may God help us to understand our debt to them, which we cannot repay.

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