Thursday, September 22, 2011

My Soapbox

I don't really have a name for this post. I can't settle on any one emotion enough to choose. I was just reading the post a friend of mine wrote about the 4th of July on her blog. I thought back to hanging with her family at American Village that day, and how special that day is every year to our family. You see, my Dad was in the Navy during Vietnam; his brother, my uncle, was in the Army. My Pawpaw's brother was in the Army during Korea. My husband is a Marine, and so is our son; my father-in-law was in the Army. I could go on and on. Suffice it to say, there are strong traditions of military service in all the branches of our family tree. Our love for our country runs very deep.

That is why I will never understand why parents do not teach their children. It's not the school's responsibility to train our kids to look up to and respect these men who have sacrificed so much and would have given more had it been asked of them. When they reach school-age, our babies should already know the Pledge of Allegiance and how to put their little hands over their hearts. They should thank the military people they run into at the store or the gas station. These children are not born knowing to be respectful, to be thankful, to be appreciative; they are taught...or not.

Unless and until these families lose someone in the service of God and country, they will never know how it breaks our hearts when people are afraid of our guys because of their experiences, suffered on behalf of their fellow Americans. Most people will never know what it costs us as their wives to watch our strong husbands struggle to readjust and then to see them have to accept that they will never be the same men they were before. I hate that my husband, who was willing to kill and to die for these people, has to stand and watch them giggle and joke during our national anthem.

You can insult me, make fun of me, whatever. I can handle it because I really don't care what you think of me. But, please, please, do not EVER make the mistake of insulting my husband, his fallen friends, or our country. For that, I will get ugly. I have absolutely no problem telling you to get up off your ungrateful behind and shut your mouth during the Stars and Stripes. The reason you have the right to be disrespectful is because of our military and their extreme sacrifices. Let me be very clear on this, just because you have the right to do something does not make it acceptable for you to do it. Our guys also have rights. One of them is the right to be respected.

Now, I've said my piece and counted to three. And that's all I have to say about that.