Happy Veteran’s Day. First off, a quick reminder to all politicians that today is the National Holiday when living Veterans are honored. Invariably, each year, some politician, somewhere, makes a reference to all those veterans who have given their lives for this country. Typically those politicians are not veterans so it must be difficult for them to differentiate. Try to remember, live Veterans, Veterans Day, Deceased Veterans, Memorial Day. There, that wasn’t so hard, was it?
Make sure you take the time today to say thank you to a veteran. Veteran’s are not hard to find, just have a look around. After all, there are 19.1 American Veterans in the United States today. You see that homeless man over there with the cardboard sign hung around his neck? He might be a veteran. There are over 49,000 homeless veteran’s in the United States. Or what about that person over there, struggling to get aboard a bus. He might very well be a disabled veteran. The total number of Disabled American Veterans is staggering, and the number is rising almost daily as claims are made by veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Consider that person putting in a job application. He may very well be a veteran. Almost one million veterans are unemployed. Will you hire him? Hire a Vet is more than just a catch phrase, it makes good business sense. Then there are all the rest. The lucky ones who served,. came home, found jobs, and live quietly among us. They are indistinguishable among us. After all, there is only one small difference, they stepped up. So I repeat my earlier request, make sure you thank a Veteran today.
Since today is a Federal Holiday, countless Americans are enjoying the day off. Today is also my son’s Birthday. He was not only born on Veteran’s Day, but was also born in the bicentennial year of 1976. Happy Birthday, Anthony. The irony in all of this is while millions of non-veterans are enjoying this day off, my son, who is a veteran, is compelled to work. That is an irony that is repeated over and over again throughout mainstream America. So, if you are enjoying a day off, be sure to thank a veteran.
I realize some may think this article is self-serving since I am also a veteran. But this isn’t about me. It is about all the rest. I am proud of my status as a Veteran, but I am more proud I am able to sit here and write this article without fear of intimidation or reprisal. I am not constantly in fear of missiles flying over head or suicide bombers. This is because of the Veterans who have done their part, stepped up, and have kept this country safe. So, I cannot ask this enough. Be sure and thank a Veteran, not only today, but everyday.
Those are my thoughts, what are yours?
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Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate all the hoopla that surrounds veteran’s day these days. I think it’s great that they are honored. I did, however, see a bumper sticker this year that I can identify with. It said “I was a Vietnam vet before it was popular.” Also, I think the best way to support vets and the people still in uniform is to be vigilant and insist that the politicians never get us into another needless war.
I am one of those people who forget to differentiate between Veterans Day and Memorial Day. Thanks for the reminder! I appreciate the sacrifice of all Veterans of every war even those wars I did not support. It takes amazing courage to serve ones country especially when a war is decisive. May we never treat returning veterans the way some Vietnam Veterans were treated!
I meant to say when war is devisive not decisive. That made no sense!