Happy Veterans Day
There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism. ~ Alexander Hamilton
Happy Veterans Day my friends! I am not a flag waving patriot, I feel although America is an amazing country, possibly even the best place on earth to live, that we should always cast a critical eye on the things we believe. I am fairly critical of the decisions our politicians make, particularly related to how and when we go to war. However, I have utter and complete respect for the men and women of our country who decide to put on a military uniform and put their life on the line for this country.
Over my lifetime I’ve been fortunate to have a lot of conversations, relationships and friendships with veterans. I’ve gotten to talk to men who served in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, both Iraq Wars and Afghanistan. I’ve had the pleasure to hike with some of these veterans as well and as an overall group they have been fine individuals. When I was young, like most young men, I glorified war, thought it was like a John Wayne movie. Over the years, through these conversations I’ve had the delusions of my younger years dissolved by stories of the harsh realities of their realities.
War will change you, that has been a consistent theme from these men. I’ve known more than a few who have struggled with PTSD. These men have my sympathy in conjunction with my respect. Coming home from war and readjusting to “normal” life in America must be incredibly hard, I really can’t imagine. Too many veterans have survived war only to come home and lose the peace through suicide. We have to in America do a better job of taking care of those who bravely fought, were wounded, lost friends fighting for, and are still trying to survive in our country. This should never be a political issue, it’s a moral issue that all of us should be able to get behind.
The quote below was, like the photo above, found at the temple at Burning Man. The temple is a sacred site, a place where people go to say goodbye to those that they have lost, to let go of the things that weigh them down and defeat their happiness. The flag was in honor of a veteran who had been lost, a son, a brother, a father like so many others who have been lost before. I think this quote applies to our war vets, war at some level changes, perhaps breaks you. But the quote is also hopeful, because in spite of that change, even if you’re a broken crayon, you can still color, still lead a good and productive life. That is my hope for all of the veterans who have and will, return home. Thank you for your service, have a happy day and keep on coloring my friends. ~ Rev Kane