Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A Veteran's Day Tribute

With today being November 11, a date we Americans have designated as Veteran's Day
to honor our fellow citizens who have served in our military, your faithful Peasant wants
to devote this blog to this very purpose. The political issues and stories of the day can wait
a while for our time and attention; they will all be here tomorrow, believe me!

Although our rights, as well as the laws which guarantee them, are enumerated in our Constitution
it is our brave citizens in our military who protect them while protecting our country itself. No enemy
force would ever come to our land, discover our codified laws for governance and the preservation
of our rights and liberties and say "Gee, these Americans have this thing called a 'constitution' that says
we can't impose our own rules on them; we'd better turn around and go home!". They would have to be
driven out or killed in combat, and our military people are the ones among us trained for and charged with
that very duty.

It is a very great sacrifice that our men and women in our armed services make when they join up.
Their every word and deed is prescribed and regulated much more than in civilian society. When they
are given instructions to do something they are orders, and must be obeyed without question. They go
through long, strenuous basic training to be readied for their tasks ahead. They give up many of the comforts
of home, and when in a war zone, their only comfort is just being alive --- and their hold on that one remaining
comfort is very tenuous. While we enjoy our comfy, cozy beds, our safe and attractive homes, our plentiful
and delicious food and drink, and our recreational activities, our military men and women live in conditions
which would make the spartans of ancient Greece shudder. While we worry about what we're going to wear
to work, or to a party, or to go on a date, our military folk worry if they're going to come marching home or be
carried home in caskets. They worry if they will get to see their spouses, their children, their parents, their
friends, and their homes again.

And for all of this dangerous, harrowing work on behalf of all of us and our country, what do they ask in return?
Precious little, really. They love it when we take the time to thank them in some way. Sometimes we throw a
parade for them. Sometimes we hold a party for them in an armory, a veterans' hall, a courthouse, or a town
hall. Perhaps even at a state capitol or our nation's capitol. Or we turn out to welcome them home when they
complete their depolyments, greeting them at airports and seaports. Even when an individual just takes the time
to walk up to a veteran and says "thank you" for his or her service, that makes the vet's day!

It is the very least we can do to simply thank our veterans for their sacrifice and their service to our country;
after all, they gave up so much to do for us what they did. And they did it for the greatest and noblest reason
that anyone could ever do anything for anyone: out of love. That's right. Out of love for their ---for our --- fine
and wonderful country. And we all reap the benefits of their shockingly difficult labor, with the liberties which
we enjoy but so many of us take for granted. Included among them is freedom of speech, really expression,
in its many forms. Your Peasant benefits in this way, wielding my trusty "pitchfork" each week taking on those
in power who abuse that power when they abuse us. And I can't even begin to describe how grateful I am to
our men and women in uniform, both past and present. Among them are members of my family and some of
my friends.

In summation, I just want to say to all of our armed service people, the men and women of the U.S. Army,
Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard and Merchant Marines thank you all a trillion times over! I, and
we all, owe you a debt so great that we shall be forever in paying it! You are why our great country, The
United States of America, is free, prosperous, and strong. May it be so forever more! And God Bless
each and every one of you! Folks, if you enjoy your freedom, thank a vet!


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