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Independent Voices

When our political and religious institutions draw bright and inviolable lines between “us” and “them,” human behavior can, sadly, turn barbaric. I deeply lament this failure of humanity and am perpetually perplexed by the schism between our technological accomplishments and our dismal record in the social realm. We should reject leaders who act to polarize our differences rather than resolve them. Nevertheless, I honor those who commit themselves to preserve the political system that offers the greatest benefit for the most people, democracy. Particularly, I honor the all-volunteer armed forces.

With an average of two U.S. soldiers a day dying in Iraq, every day has been Memorial Day. Most of those soldiers were reservists ” meaning if Bush had not invaded Iraq, those people would be alive today, spending the Memorial Day weekend with their loved ones at a barbecue. Now, their families will spend the day at the cemetery.

No. Additional or new deaths occurring to protect our country are not necessary for me to value the sacrifices others have made for my family and me. Our appreciation should be ongoing, with a specific Memorial Day a time to concentrate our focus on the sacrifices which have been and will continue to be made to protect a free society. As is sadly the case in other aspects of our lives, those who are envious of our freedoms, opportunities and accomplishments often seek to destroy that which they cannot or choose not to achieve.


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