Watching the ceremonies this morning in remembrance of Veterans Day I could not help but think of the millions of vets who served our country with honor, too many of whom willingly gave their lives as the price for freedom, and too many of whom returned with both visible and invisible scars as perpetual reminders of their noble sacrifice. Saddest of all, too many returned home only to be cursed and spat upon by the unwashed masses of ungrateful fools blinded by their self-seving ideology and heaping disdain on those who embodied principles they could never understand or embrace: honor, duty, love of country, and putting others above their own self-interest.
Only fools glorify war. Likewise, only fools believe war is never necessary. Good men and women have fought bravely in unwise wars throughout history, and recent history is no exception. One can hate war but love the warrior. One can engage in civil debate about the wisdom of bellicose actions and still be a patriot, and still be grateful for the service of those who do not have the option to second-guess the orders issued by the civil authorities they serve.
Blind allegiance to ideology (from the left or right, by doves and by hawks alike) is dangerous, and never ends well. But those who harbor a pathological hatred of the military, of police, and of order and civil society in general and cloak themselves in the borrowed clothes of causes to allow them to heave their hatred as “righteous indignation” pose by far the greatest danger to freedom and democracy. And those thinking individuals who fail to speak the truth for fear of giving offense, and those for whom right and wrong can only be determined by consulting the oracle of political correctness, are doing no lesser a disservice to those who placed their lives at risk to defend the freedom we enjoy thanks to their continuing sacrifice.
On Veterans Day and every day, let us give thanks to those who day in and day out go into dark, dangerous places far from their homes and families to protect ideals that will never go out of fashion other than for those who stand for nothing and, therefore, will happily march behind the first demagogue who plays a catchy a tune to their liking.