Friday, November 10, 2006

Freedom Is Not Free

I had a picture of my father in his Army uniform from World War 2. My wife's father drove a Landing Craft in World War 2. When I was a kid, there was a guy who had fought for thirteen months in Viet Nam and was shot in the head by a sniper walking to a plane to go home. My next door neighbor just came home from Iraq.

Veterans returning from Viet Nam were not accorded this country's best and warmest welcome home. I trust that will never happen again. Today, the New York Stock Exchange will actually halt for a moment of silence during the trading day. They have been doing this since 1954. The Stock Exchange only stops once a year, and it does it only for the Veterans.

It doesn't matter if you are a Democrat or a Republican, a hawk or a dove. You have rights, and they exist, and are guaranteed by the soldier. We the citizen put the political structure in place that makes the decisions. It is the soldier that keeps us free.

I leave you with this thought. I used to work with a young lady named Sara, who lived in Iran. One night, she was picked up and imprisoned for four days. During her imprisonment, she was beaten with a rubber hose, and hung upside down for three hours. Her crime was having a transistor radio. This happened three years ago.

6 comments:

Crankster said...

I have a lot of respect for the armed forces; my father was in the Navy for 20+ years. I just wish our elected leaders had the same level of respect.

The CEO said...

My hero, you understand what I wrote. I wish they did too. Are you sure we weren't separated at birth by wandering gypsies?

WanderingGirl said...

I'm with you both. I hail from a proud military family. Though I don't think I could ever do it, I don't necessarily agree with the politics or policies that got us into our current war, and I want our soldiers home, I respect and appreciate the job that they do, for it keeps me free to have my opinions without being hung upside down and beaten with hoses.

The CEO said...

While I'm certain that we need more competent physical therapists, we need more competent people in the military, more competent people in the entire political process, and an educated, involved electorate. Democracy assumes an educated, involved electorate.

If you look at the issues in this past election that were addressed in only a few states but were followed by many, such as immigration and gay marriage, foreseeable elections will be just as contentious and challenge what our values really are.

Echo Mouse said...

I completely agree. It's a big day in our family too.

misanthropster said...

ditto to all of the above.

My grandfather was in Pearl Harbor, and then had the luck later in the war to be on Iwo Jima...

good post.