August 24th, 2004

bear by san

On Service

pecunium has some things to say about whether someone's record of military service is an appropriate target for denigration.

You don't get a bigger Purple Heart for losing a leg than you do for getting a scratch. You get it because it might have killed you. Sometimes your family gets it because it did kill you.

I'd also like to point out, as an aside, that I see no hypocrisy at all in a returned serviceman or woman speaking out in opposition to a war in which he or she has fought. And I can't imagine that anybody who understands the nature of military service would find hypocrisy in that.

You go where your country tells you to go, and you do your best there, and when you come home--if you come home--you have more than earned the right to speak your conscience, if your conscience needs to be spoken. That's why they call it service.

I'm not a drum beater, and I am deeply saddened by war, but I believe that this earned dignity cloaks every man and woman who has served in the military and been denied the respect they have earned by that service, that sacrifice, no matter what his or her political leanings are. John McCain, and John Kerry, and George Bush the elder.

It shames me to think that my country and my government have forgotten that, or are choosing to ignore it for political expediency.
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