I read an article today that laid out a grossly offensive offer of “support” to our troops. “Thank you for defending us in Iraq,” it read very simply. Defending us. You and me? That single sentence is so full of inflammatory bullshit that it should receive immediate dismissal. But I also believe that to allow idiots like this to define the gratitude we feel for the people serving in our armed forces is to invite the assumption that we’re against the individuals, rather than against the president.
So I need to make it clear: I thank the American soldier for being there. Doing their duty even when they may disagree politically. If it weren’t for that fortitude of the typical, American soldier, our nation would be vulnerable on many levels. We would have already lost our freedoms.
The fact that this war is so wrong and yet the men and women of our military continue to do their duty, live by their oath, and support the decisions of our government, is a testament to the strength of character of these individuals and a promise to me that I don’t have to fear the oppression of tyranny, chaos, fanaticism, or zealotry. I believe that our military is one of our greatest assets and that, in a true crisis and under the right leadership, their dedication and selflessness would hold the nation together.
The establishment of this force, backed by a morality that values individual expression, democracy, freedom of speech and idealism, and the active disempowerment of any type of monarchy, religious, political, genetic, or otherwise, gives me great comfort.
I also believe that if we have a series of federal administrations who choose to treat the loyalty, strength, and self sacrifice of our great American Military as a given, to do with whatever they please, it won’t last. If the people continue to ignore the root values that make us American and choose security over freedom, choose leaders with an unclear agenda, and refuse to send the message that we are Americans, with traditional American values, we won’t find comfort in the force of our military. Either it will disintegrate and no longer protect us, or it will serve as a force that enslaves and imprisons us.