Sunday, May 20, 2007

Home of the Brave

When I was ten, my country was at war in Vietnam.

When I was a teenager, my boyfriends were all certain they'd be drafted and sent off to die in a jungle. They were brave boys. But my country wasn't brave. From that experience we don't want to repeat the mistake of not honoring our troops again.

Now I am 52. My husband served in the US Navy on a ship taking troops to Vietnam. Today the brave boys volunteer for the military service. We send them off to far lands again. Some die. Not many. Not like Vietnam. On the home front we advertise our "support for the troops". But still, my country is not brave.

In World War II, on average, 280 US soldiers died EVERY DAY. America was brave. We wanted to free people from oppression. We were willing to pay the price. We supported our troops. We sacrificed on the home front for them. My father served in the Pacific theatre in WW II. During those awful years we buried our military dead, we buried millions of civilians in the war torn countries, but we who survived and we who were born to those who survived, we hesitate - as a nation- to sacrifice again.

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