What is a truism? Well, here is an example. When young American men (and now women, unfortunately) join the military, few understand just what they are getting themselves into. Who joins the military to “hurry up and wait“? Yet that is part of the culture.

In 10 Awful Things About the That Army Nobody Tells You (, Cecil Kenmill doesn’t bash the military, but he doesn’t glamorize it. We live in an odd time. Most Americans don’t quite know what to make of the military. They know it is a hard job. Many almost pity military personnel. Yet there is respect, even if it is a grudging among some. Even after they know the cost, some guys keep signing up and serving.

So what is here for Memorial Day? Different perspectives.

Memorial Day is about remembering those who gave their lives in defense of our country. So when someone speaks ill of the United States, don’t get mad. Don’t get even. Just ask a question.

Our Land is not perfect, but why are good men and women willing to fight and risk their lives for it?

The dead cannot answer anymore, but there are those still with us who can.

15 thoughts on “MEMORIAL DAY IN 2018: WHY DO THEY SERVE?

  1. Because we hear so much about our military’s failures lately and not enough about their successes, here is a link to what seems to have been a little covered story about our military and its leaders acting with professionalism, discression and effectiveness:

    I was particularly impressed by this decision:

    “The Russian high command in Syria assured us it was not their people,” Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told senators in testimony last month. He said he directed Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, “for the force, then, to be annihilated.”

    “And it was.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @tsalmon

      Well, I expect that will significantly lower the morale of Russian mercenaries. Attacking US commandos when they have more than adequate air cover is suicide. They really should not be fooling with our guys. Mattis obviously is not going to put up with it.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice post Tom. If you don’t mind, I’d like to compliment what you have written with this insight as to “Why do they serve? “

    Here is a quote from Reinhold Niebuhr describing the “spirit” of service that Gandi tried to project:

    “he expresses the ideal of love, the spirit of moral goodwill. This involves for him freedom from resentments and a moral purpose, free of selfish ambition.”

    Although Gandi served his country through civil nonviolent resistance, the same moral “spirit” applies to military service, even more so in the case where the technique of such moral service requires terrible violence.

    As you know, one of my last assignments in the Navy before I retired was to teach a leadership course. The essence of the course could be broken down into three complimenting statements:

    1. The essence of true leadership and followership is the pursuit of honor and integrity.

    2. Honor and integrity manifest as the practice of virtue.

    3. The basic motivation for sacrifice in pursuit of the highest virtues is unselfish love.

    Why did they serve and sacrifice, even to the point of ultimate sacrifice? The men and women who have served that we honor on Memorial Day served out of unselfish love.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Excellent Tom and a timely reminder! Serving something far bigger and greater than oneself. That feeling is still out there despite the progressive liberals and whoever else tries as hard as they can to quell such a thought. I am so thankful that there are those out there, be they mostly young, who still find meaning in the idea of serving…and in their case, it is often the ultimate sacrifice.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is kind of strange. Think of it. Somehow the same Liberal Democrat party gave us the man who said these words.

      And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.

      Yet that same party wants us to believe we have the “right” to a minimum income, a good job, healthcare, retirement pay, an education, “freedom” from religion, same-sex marriage, an abortion, a sex change operation, …. It gets so absurd. Why does anyone take them seriously.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow, thank you for this powerful post, Tom.
    Another (similar) colloquialism you might be familiar with is, “Shut up and color” LOL 🙂

    As a side note, I will be away a few days and would appreciate a prayer chain for my husband (who is a military leader) if you don’t mind. His father passed yesterday. It was very unexpected and under very bad circumstances. I am heading out tomorrow to be with the family, he is out there now. Your prayers are appreciated.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Good reminder Tom on the importance of Memorial Day. I do business with the military and live in a Navy town and am frequently in contact with both enlisted men and officers. The majority I’ve found to be just outstanding people who love their country, are driven and very, very smart which goes completely against the common narrative of the “poor damaged soldier manipulated in to enlisted.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @Tricia

      Thank you. Glad you like our military personnel.

      The narrative of the of the “poor damaged soldier is something that infuriates me. Liberal Democrats want everyone to see themselves as victims. It’s sick. Heaven help us if they ever convince the American soldier that he is a victim.

      Liked by 1 person

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