Thoughts for Veterans Day/Remembrance Day 2015 - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Thoughts for Veterans Day/Remembrance Day 2015

I would be remiss if I didn’t share a few thoughts on this Veterans Day/Remembrance Day. Although I have now lived in this country for more than 15 years, I am still accustomed to calling November 11th Remembrance Day which is the term used to signify this day in Canada and throughout the British Commonwealth.

If you should ever find yourself in Canada in early November you will see people wearing poppies. The poppies refer to the poppies Dr. John McRae described in his poem “In Flanders Fields”. Although I did see someone wear a poppy the other day, it is a tradition that has never caught on down here. But poppies or no poppies, Americans honor our military because we implicitly understand that our military is the most important organization on earth. Without it, there would be no liberty here or abroad.

Despite the importance of our military, it is not without its troubles and it ought to be of concern to all Americans. What is particularly distressing are those soldiers who survived multiple tours of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq only to return home and take their own lives unable to cope with PTSD. Indeed, more veterans have died on American soil by their own hand than perished in Afghanistan and Iraq. Complicating matters is our federal government with an incompetent VA hospital system.

But this year was not without good news for military families who lost loved ones. The families of those 12 soldiers who were killed in the Fort Hood shootings finally receive Purple Hearts and the benefits that go with them after years of the Obama Administration characterizing the terrorist attack as an act of “workplace violence.” All of which makes me wonder what conclusion the administration will come to concerning the shootings at two military installations in Chattanooga, Tennessee this past July which claimed the lives of four Marines and a Navy sailor. If nothing else, our military personnel should be afforded the same rights guaranteed in the Second Amendment as civilians are. There are no guarantees (there never are), but bad people know that our military personnel are unarmed and this makes them sitting ducks. This must change.

Sometimes our military personnel demonstrate valor off the battlefield as was the case in August when Air Force airman Spencer Stone and Oregon National Guard specialist Alek Skaarlatos along with their childhood friend Anthony Sadler thwarted a terrorist attack while vacationing in Europe aboard a train bound from Amsterdam to Paris. If they had not been on board that train that day, I shudder to think how many people innocent civilians could have died. This incident demonstrates that you can take a man out of the military, but you cannot take military training out of a man. It also demonstrates that our military is a force for good in the world. Let us never forget that.

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