The Sacrifice

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English: D. Myles Cullen [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Thinking on the sacrifices of so many fallen soldiers and service veterans who stood bravely in the face of terrifying circumstances. It seems like everyone is quick to co-opt that service with the newest “military appreciation” fad – bumper stickers, signs, t-shirts and the like. But they don’t really understand how a deployment affects the soldier or how a long-term commitment to the armed forces affects every aspect of their being. It’s great to honor our military services, but we don’t do much to help with the transition into civilian life, nor do we help their families as much as we should.

But what I really don’t understand is how we are failing to address the political climate that loves putting them in harm’s way, either for political gains or for economic gains. War is hell for everyone except the political and economical beneficiaries. It can be disastrous to entire civilizations, yet we continue to hold it in the highest regard despite the fallout to those left behind after the bombs have dropped. We never seem to learn these lessons even after years of education and experience or as we age.

I just think that is the most tragic reality of the human condition. I will always support our veterans, but I won’t glorify the idolatry of war that has taken so much from their lives, the lives of their loved ones, and the lives of people trapped within impossible political situations.

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