“Thank you for your service.” I always feel uncomfortable when someone thanks me for my service. Do they have any idea of what they are thanking me for? What sacrifices I’ve made to honor the call of duty? What I’ve experienced? Why I chose to serve? It’s doubtful, only those who have served in the uniformed services or those who have been very close to them are likely to understand. There have been times when I’ve struggled to understand. Among veterans these words shouldn’t be necessary. We know. We understand. Those of us who have worn the uniform have a common core of experience for which few civilians can relate.
Do you really want to thank a veteran? Here’s a short list:of things you should do:
- Make our service unnecessary and by honoring and taking care of those who have served.
- Exercise your Constitutional rights responsibly and accepting the consequences for your actions.
- Take responsibility for your freedom. It’s true that freedom isn’t free. Every citizen must work for it.
- Participate in your democracy by voting wisely and communicating with your elected representatives.
- Hold elected representatives and civil servants at all levels of government accountable for their policies and their actions. They work for you!
- Question authority! Demand evidence and facts. Make those in “authority” defend their policies and their beliefs. Government is answerable only to the citizens.
- Serve others, be compassionate and show gratitude. We are all in this together. That is how we make America great.