This is the day we honor our veterans for their service to our country. It is a day that all political spectrums come together in thanks for the people that have served this greatest nation on earth. It is the greatest nation in a large part due to the strong desire there is in this country for freedom. We hold freedom as the most fundamental principle and right of every human being.
Every one of the founders of this nation was prepared to die for the cause; throwing off government control and creating the concept of self-rule. Up until that point it was the norm that government controlled people’s lives, and that birth right was the way it would always be. If you were born of royalty, someday you would rule the kingdom. The founders turned that concept upside down and created the miracle we call the United States of America, and its founding principles the US Constitution.
The founders knew freedom wasn’t free, and that it could only survive if the citizens were willing to fight, defend, and die for the cause. The founders expected a lot from the citizens and believed that once individuals were given freedom they would certainly be willing to defend that God given right. The founders believed in God and that certain rights were beyond the realm of man. They believed the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness were precious and worth dying for.
The founders also knew that history was a great indicator of the future, and that human behavior had to be harnessed to protect those most basic rights. They harnessed them in limiting government and expanding individual freedom to the outer limits. They knew individuals could only prosper if they were allowed to freely create their path without government intervention. It worked for a hundred years. The last hundred years have been a return to the past that the founders were so intent on protecting us against.
Since FDR, we have seen a drift back to some utopian vision that the collective is more important than the individual. We have seen an expansion of government and a reduction in individual freedom as we have drifted away from the individual to a more powerful centralized government. If we look today it is such a stark contrast to our founding. A founding that took many lives in a revolution that changed the world. George Washington and his small band of troops set the example of how a powerful cause, freedom, could defeat the most powerful military in the world. He proved how individuals with a cause were the most powerful weapon in the fight for freedom. The spirit and hearts of the soldiers were more powerful than any mechanical weapon or fancy uniform.
Our military men and women have always answered the call to protect freedom. They have done miraculous things around the world and have been responsible for more freedom than any other entity in the world. These men and women are a shining beacon to others that when the cause is just, and the nation calls, they are willing to risk their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor. They leave friends and family behind in the cause of freedom and defense.
While this small minority of military veterans has sacrificed so much in the defense of freedom, we need to ask - have we done our part to honor that sacrifice? Have we protected those freedoms by electing people that honor our constitution and the cause of freedom? Have we been diligent in monitoring the policies that have given us such prosperity and opportunity for future generations? Would George Washington be proud to have sacrificed so many in the cause of freedom he so honorably gave to us?
We honor our military veterans today because they believe in the cause of freedom. They believe our freedoms are worth fighting and dying for. If we look at how intrusive and over reaching our central government has become we must ask – have we been staunch defenders of freedom as the citizens of this great nation?
I know our veterans have held up their part in the role of self-rule. We honor them today and thank them. But what I wish and believe honors our veterans the most is to do our part and protect our freedoms by engaging in the political process with the intensity our veterans have pursued theirs.
God Bless our veterans and their families!