Charlie's Blog: Memorial Day Reflections 2018

5.28.2018

Memorial Day Reflections 2018


James, earn this... earn it.
CAPTAIN MILLER, Saving Private Ryan

An American soldier was called up to duty to fight in Iraq. While he was there, his wife took up with another man and carried on an affair that was so flagrant that the man's children started to refer to the paramour as "Daddy." The soldier encountered an IED in Iraq, and he was killed in the explosion. Was his sacrifice worth it?

This story is not entirely true. I have simply put it together from the countless stories I have heard over the last decade from vets returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. Stories like this are what beget cynicism. I believe this cynicism is what cost this country victory in the Vietnam War. Why would anyone volunteer, fight, and die for a country full of cheating spouses and immoral, cowardly, and lazy bums?

When men and women die in war, they are making the ultimate sacrifice. You can't ask anymore of someone than to lay down their lives for you. But how should we respect their sacrifice?

I love the scene in Saving Private Ryan when Ryan is confronted by the sacrifice that Capt. Miller and his men made to save him. Ryan had lost all his brothers, and these men had died to save him and return him to his mother. Ryan was someone willing to make the ultimate sacrifice, yet he was spared. Those men literally took his place. They died for him. All Miller asked of him was one thing. Earn this. Earn it.

For those of us who live and enjoy the liberty these sacrifices bought for us, we are tasked with the same thing. We need to earn this. This means living in a way that honors the sacrifice these men and women made. Unfortunately, most citizens of the United States are not earning this. We are a country of millionaire athletes who kneel during the anthem. Others can't even be bothered to vote. As for Memorial Day, it's just a picnic day like Labor Day and the Fourth of July.

I love America. I love liberty and the Constitution. I love not being under the heel of the boot of Nazism, Japanese imperialism, and Soviet communism. I love our service members who put on the uniform and serve this country with distinction. I remember those who gave all.

If you want to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice, earn it. Live in a way that pays honor to the fallen. Love your country. Love your family. Love God and your fellow Americans. Be moral, good, righteous, and true. And remember. Always remember. Wherever they may be, live in a way that puts a smile on their faces. They deserve this.