I read a lot of books that involve loyalty to a leader or to a country. It’s a prevalent thing in most fantasy and sci fi stories. The deep devotion to a beloved king or queen, the drive to protect the homeland, is a big part of the human experience.
In the real world, that devotion isn’t quite as poetic, but still as moving.
We’re in a phase of recovery here in the US, where we still have a large swath of citizens who’s devotion is not to the country, but to a man, which is problematic since we are not a monarchy. That kind of allegiance belongs in the books, not in our reality, at least not here in a democratic republic.
However, today is a day we have set aside to look to those who put their loyalty into the defense, not of a person, but of our nation, those whose service freed our nation from tyranny, those who defended our nation from outside aggression, even those who fought and died to keep our nation from severing into two.
Whether or not I agree with the direction our military has taken in the last decades, I have the utmost respect for those who put themselves in harms way, and paid the ultimate price.
There are many, because our wars have been numerous. Men and women who died somewhere far from home, who suddenly stopped writing home, who may still lie in some forest grave, unmarked and forgotten…men and women killed by gunshot or missile strike, by bayonet and sniper, roadside bombs and musket…all in the name of the country we call home.
Today is a day that we remember, “All gave some, and some gave all” and we remember those who fell. We may not know their names or faces, but we can hold them in our hearts all the same.
It is time for us to remember that in the USA the feelings of national devotion should be directed, not at a person or even a flag, but at our country, this democratic republic that promises us a government by the people, for the people.
I hope your day is filled with hope and love and kindness, Readers.
Photo by Justin Casey on Unsplash