Monday, May 31, 2010

A Dose of Anecdotal Realism for your Memorial Day

I'm going to go way off topic here, at least for this blog. It's not off topic given the holiday.

I just finished up a facebook chat with my friend who's doing a tour in Iraq. He sounds ok. Just OK. As in he is coping with his situation but he is not well. Yes, he chose to serve, knowing full well that there was a strong possibility he would end up in Iraq. Either way, it does not change the fact that the situation sucks. It sucks that we invaded Iraq for no good reason other than some good old-fashioned regime change. It sucks that we are still there. It sucks that we continue to send men and women to places such as Iraq and Afghanistan in the name of democracy and freedom. And, as it relates to one of my best friends, it sucks that he is not stationed somewhere nicer like, I don't know, a base in Germany, perhaps.

So while it is traditional to remember the contribution of soldiers in wars and conflicts in our country's storied past, I'd like to propose a different type of observance. Talk to someone on active duty in the service. Learn about their routine, how their lives change during their time of service as well as how they will likely change afterwards. Then be grateful that there are people who choose to serve their country, regardless of whether or not you agree with that position or the military position taken by your government. Because you know that, along with 99.5% of the populace, there is no way you would join the armed forces.

I hope that everyone is enjoying their burgers and hot dogs today somewhere warm and sunny, but not too hot.

Back to regular programming tomorrow.