Well it’s the 4th of July once more and although the celebrations will be subdued this year, because of the virus, the 4th still is here and must be noted, There are times this year when I feel estranged from my friends and family because of the pandemic but always the loneliness that comes with it pales in comparison to the forced separations our veterans faced as they went off to keep our nation secure. Many of those who participated in World war II, Korea and Vietnam endured separations that stretched on for years. Their kids grew up without them, their spouses suffered great hardships of going it alone. So today we say a collective thank you to all of our veterans for their service and their families for their sacrifices.
What seems so egregious to me is the unappreciative way, we take all of the things, these people fought for, for granted. As a kid growing up there was a patriotic fervor in our society that had so much pride engrained in it. Our 4thof July celebrations were the highlight of the summer. But as the years have gone by and our governments leaders have used the military for ill gain instead of what it was intended for, that pride has crumbled. Many of you that traveled for the holiday passed the shuttered Legion and V.F.W clubs that no one wanted to support anymore. Left to face the scorn for these military actions are not the Politicians who initiated them but those they sent into harm’s way, for all of the wrong reasons. Yet, we need to honor these brave people for their loyalty and courage, in spite of their leaders’ mistakes. They did what they were asked to do.
A while back I wrote about the sacrifice our armed forces have made and I asked this rhetorical question to our political leaders. “Were you worthy of that sacrifice?” Many of our leaders did serve themselves but then they came back and got caught up in the politics that rules this country, and it tends to desecrate their service. To them I say, “Your laurels only go so far.” It’s a shame when you let your true colors obliterate your past service. That’s one thing about setting the bar that high with your service, you need to live on or above that bar for the rest of your life and in the end, you will be rewarded by a greater power.
My father -in-law was a proud veteran who spilled his blood on the beaches of Okinawa and then came home to his family and lived his life proud of what he had accomplished. He was a good citizen and a hardworking man, a good father and husband. If I could go sit on the grass over his grave today in the National Cemetery, I would have tears. Not just tears for his loss, but tears for the sacrifices he made, that are being squandered by selfish people that never knew or cared about those sacrifices or him. They care only for politics money and power.
It’s a shame to have to write like this but you can only ignore the elephant in the room so long. That the pandemic has rained on our parade yes, but the pandemic will go away-- but the sins of the past initiated by our leaders in this govenment will not go away. To those of you who served so honorably I salute you my friends. For those who have been laid to rest may you rest in peace assured of a job well done. For those still struggling may you never be forgotten.