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Memorial Day Musings and DADT

Thoughts of someone who has never “raised her hand” and has deep respect for all of those who have.

Thank you ALL for your service.


I attended our small town’s Memorial Day events this morning- a parade lead by our American Legion Post with the school marching band, Boy and Girl Scout troops, fire and rescue vehicles, and even a half dozen riders on horseback.

There were speeches given at our 2 memorial sites on the parade route by a Korean War veteran, local clergy and our state representative. Probably a couple hundred people attended, which is a very good turnout for our little town.

A sunny and pleasant day to visit with neighbors, honor, remember and reflect. There were multiple gun salutes, including some via Civil War muskets.

But when a wreath of red, white and blue flowers was laid in front of one of the memorials, I heard my late grandmother’s words, many times repeated to us all:

“Bring me flowers while I’m alive; I can’t enjoy them when I’m dead.”

And it struck me as ironic: how we were all across this country gathering to remember those veterans who gave their lives for our country, while dishonoring those who pledged to do the same.

All because of a promise not yet kept:

More below.Gram, who passed a few years ago at age 95, knew a few things- not the least of which was that while one should “do right” by the dead, it is also important to take care of the living.

Apparently the President doesn’t see the irony of his words:

That is what Memorial Day is all about. It is about doing all we can to repay the debt we owe to those men and women who have answered our nation’s call by fighting under its flag. It is about recognizing that we, as a people, did not get here by accident or good fortune alone. It’s about remembering the hard winter of 1776, when our fragile American experiment seemed doomed to fail; and the early battles of 1861 when a union victory was anything but certain; and the summer of 1944, when the fate of a world rested on a perilous landing unlike any ever attempted.

It’s about remembering each and every one of those moments when our survival as a nation came down not simply to the wisdom of our leaders or the resilience of our people, but to the courage and valor of our fighting men and women. For it is only by remembering these moments that we can truly appreciate a simple lesson of American life – that what makes all we are and all we aspire to be possible are the sacrifices of an unbroken line of Americans that stretches back to our nation’s founding.

You think just MAYBE some of those we honor today were LGBT soldiers?

Are we not to honor them as well, Mr. President, and if we are, how can we as a nation do so, when their fellow soldiers are forced on an ongoing daily basis to choose between living their lives honestly out in the open or maintain a silent lie?

A lie that serves no purpose whatsoever, but to remind us all how far we still need as a nation to come.  

A lie that injures not just the lives of our troops, but those of their families and friends, who must also maintain the silence and illusion for the sake of their beloved soldiers.

Brian Hughes’ recent and excellent WSJ piece was entitled “Gays Have Served Honorably On The War On Terror”.

I’d like to correct that to read: “Gays Have Served Honorably”.

Stop this now, President Obama. Keep your promise- as our Commander-in-Chief, it is your obligation.

Please serve US, the American public, as honorably as those who have served our country.

Thank you.

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