Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Where I Stand

We were on vacation recently and while I was on line at the Resort's Dessert Shoppe waiting for my daily fix of all things gooey, I overheard a young (younger than me) man talking about how he was there on his Honeymoon. I did a double-take as the kid looked not a day older than twenty-two. What? Then I reminded myself that the rest of the world gets married much younger than NYC dwellers; I was at an international resort, so who knew just where this kid hailed from? In the course of ordering a crepe and eavesdropping, my friend overheard that he was in the Military. We both then turned around and at the same instant told the boy/man standing to our side, "Thanks."
He blushed, as a boy/man should, and then told us he felt uncomfortable accepting thanks. He reminded us that he had signed up to do the job. I looked him square in the face (as only a forty-something can) and said, "So what? I don't have the balls to do what you're doing. I give you a ton of credit, kid, and maybe I understand it better than most because my husband is a cop...who knows?...but either way, thank you for your service."
I then quickly plugged my friend Heather's fabulous song (see the blog post A Great New Voice) and ordered  him to Stay Safe. He smiled and we both exited with something yummy.
Fast forward to Memorial Day---yesterday. In the midst of endless BBQ's there were tributes and parades; some of us were lucky enough to buy a soldier a beer as we interacted with them in NYC for Fleet Week.
Some of us were dumb enough to trip over our tongues: apparently, Chris Hayes, an MSNBC Host, felt the need to say that he felt "uncomfortable" calling fallen soldiers heroes. He said this, ON AIR, on Memorial Day.
Here's where I stand: I don't have to look up Chris Hayes's Bio to know he has never served in the Military. But unless and until this country reinstates a draft, or our citizens are somehow forced to serve, our military members deserve all the respect that can be afforded to them. Whether you believe in this war or that one, or no war at all...these brave kids soldiers have got our back. Period. The End.
I'm calling them Heroes. And that's where I stand.

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