This Veteran’s Day, 2015, I offer my gratitude to all who gave their lives in service to our great nation over the years. Some died, like my great-great uncle who died on the steps of Lexington. My uncles and father-in-law returned from World War II, alive, seemingly well. However, along with thousands of others, they were left with lingering fears and PTSD. You did not want to touch my father-in-law to wake him, you may have been welcomed by a fist in the face. Others, like my husband and brother, put their lives on the line every day, not behind a gun but providing support, always facing the possibility of attack.
Millions died in the wars. Those who lived lost a part of themselves, more than just their youth. Young families gave up hopes of a home for up to twenty years, living on near slave wages to serve. Improvements in medical care saves lives; but many return from the latest wars with body parts missing, requiring medical care and support for the rest of their lives. Young soldiers return broken in both body and spirit.
Almost everyday someone posts pictures of these brave veterans with missing arms and legs. Worse is the damage to their souls. I cannot imagine the things they have seen and done that would cause so many to cower in fear, or even worse, take their own lives. Suicide has become the way “out” for too many of our valiant young people who volunteered, or who joined one of the local Reserve units, and found themselves in the war zone.
War is not pretty. It is an “adventure” that should be offered to the politicians and generals who call for it. Our young men and women need to know war is ugly, evil, and damaging. Even those, like my brother and husband, who never fired a shot, had their lives damaged by their service. Long hours, constant danger, and stress took a toll on them, aging them early.
I honor all who gave all their lives, for a time or forever, in service to our country. In a very real way, they have protected our borders and kept us safe. It is sad that the government has not yet honored these men in an honest way.
Eve knew that war was wicked and evil. The Destroyer spurned men to hatred, fighting, and war. It is the women, mothers and wives, who watch their sons, and now daughters, leave to protect their borders or fight in enemy lands.
Eve would have argued against wars. Women through the ages argued against the violence causing death and maiming of their beloved sons, husbands, and fathers. I am glad my sons are now old enough to avoid military service. Their dad spent enough of his life for all of them. I fear for my grandsons. I will beg them to wait to be drafted, rather than placing their lives in the hands of immoral politicians.
Do you agree? Share your thoughts and stories.