“I dream of giving birth to a child who will ask, ‘Mother, what was war?” (Eve Merriam) – seen on the Jack’s Winning Words blog on Veterans Day, 2015.
The dream of a world at peace, with no wars anywhere, has been just that – a dream – pretty much throughout history. Ever since mankind developed a sense of possession – what’s mine and what you claim is yours – there have been wars that arise from one trying to take something from another. Many have tried to glorify wars as having noble causes, as defending honor or country, as somehow being glorious; but the truth, as General Sherman put it, is that all wars are hell.
On this Veterans Day and every day we should pause to remember those who sacrificed all in the many wars that America has fought. Most did not choose to go off to war, but they went when they were called upon to serve. There was no glory in the wars; but, a few were fought for truly noble causes; and there was bravery and honor and sacrifice by all who served in them.
One can argue forever about the worth of wars or the justifications (moral or otherwise) for going to war, but on Veterans Day there is no argument that those who went to wars in serviced to their country deserve to be recognized and honored, especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice. So, today take a moment at a Veterans Day ceremony or at a veterans’ memorial or cometary or maybe just in a quiet corner of your home, and say a little prayer of thanks for those who answered the call to serve their country in times of war. Someday maybe that little girl’s question will become reality, but we are not yet there.
As a Viet Nam Veteran I plan on attending the dedication ceremony later this morning in our little Village for the new Fallen Warrior Memorial in Central Park. It will bring back memories that I’ve long since forgotten and some of which I’d rather forget altogether; but, it will also cause a swell of pride inside that I answered the call and went away to war for my country. I was lucky. I came back., Many did not and for them I will pray today.