I was going to spend this blog ranting about how it seems that some people can say anything they want and get away with it, no matter how outrageous, hurtful or ignorant the comments. At most, they issue a panic apology and all is forgiven, while others are vilified and punished, no matter how heartfelt the apology.
This was particularly evident this past week when a so-called comedian on SNL felt it was acceptable to make a joke not only about the military service given by Lt. Commander Dan Crenshaw, but the loss of his eye in battle. It was disgusting, but indicative of how we have lost all standards of decency and gratitude as a result of giving into childish anger over things we don't like or agree with. News flash! As the Rolling Stones said so succinctly, "You can't always get what you want."
The only good thing that came of it was that we once again got to see the dignity and courage of those who serve when Lt. Commander Crenshaw took the attempt to humiliate him and turned it into a "teachable moment". Here is how he handled it.
We should all aspire to such grace, compassion and forgiveness.
Interestingly, this new generation of veterans prefer to be called warriors rather than heroes. Find out why and get their view of serving their country in an interview with Sean Parnell, retired U.S. Army Ranger, Rob O'Neill, retired Navy SEAL who killed Usama bin Laden, Dakota Meyer, Medal of Honor recipient, and Marcus Luttrell, retired Navy SEAL and author of 'Lone Survivor.'
Now, let's focus on what is important - remembering and honoring veterans in more than just words. Here are sites offering ideas for what we can do beyond acknowledging Veterans Day:
If you know a veteran, you may want to share these resources with him/her or their families:
Veterans' Charities & Non-Profits: https://greatnonprofits.org/categories/view/veterans
Finally, if you're interested in the personal stories of our veterans, visit Experiencing War: Stories from the Veterans History Project from the Library of Congress:
So, in the words of Congressman-elect, Lt. Commander Crenshaw, if we do nothing else for those who gave all, "Never forget."