“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? Do they know what sacrifices I’ve made to honor the call of duty? Can they fathom what I’ve experienced? Can they understand 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 by not sending our Armed Forces to fight wars that are unwinnable, lack clearly defined objectives, and “for profit” wars.
- Honor and take care of those who have served and make sure the government keeps the promises it has made to our service members and veterans.
- Exercise your Constitutional rights responsibly and accept 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 reminding your elected representative that they work for you and they can be replaced at the next election.
- 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. Americans will make America great, not some orange-hair reality television star..