Veterans Day-pause, reflect on the sacrifices
November 09, 2011 - This Day became Veterans Day by act of Congress in 1954. Our nation's first official recognition day for veterans was Armistice Day. Woodrow Wilson was president at the time.
("Oh, beautiful, for spacious skies. . .")
I recall my Army veteran father referring to World War I as being "the war to end all wars." This was widely believed to be such.
We are allowed to dream, to hope and to believe world rulers would see the futility war and suffering war creates.
However, in the late 1920s Americans were experiencing the "Great Depression."
I, and others, still wonder if President Roosevelt got us into the war in Europe in 1941 for economic reasons rather than patriotism.
The losses of human life in that war were tremendous.
("My country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty.")
Lessons wars taught world leaders have not been lessened through logical means. Our involvements in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and so many other areas have cost so many lives . . . lives of human beings who remembrances and respect cannot be lessened by naming a Day.
The November 11 of 1918 was continued as the Day in 1954 when President Eisenhower said, "On that day, let us solemnly remember the sacrifices of all those who fought so valiantly, on the seas, in the air, and on foreign shores, to preserve our heritage of freedom."
Our three children were born between wars, which few parents can say today, because our youths have seen many "conflicts" that have involved our service men and women.
But, now I'm wondering about our grandchildren's future.
("America, America, God shed his grace on thee.")
There are so many theaters of hostilities that we could be entered into for financial, power and religious reasons.
I believe Americans might again be "sold" into going into another war. Politicians, orators and believers in other things can paint outlooks and landscapes that can be very convincing.
This Day we must review words in the Gettysburg address, stop and look up at our 50-star flag, thrill to our properly sung national anthem, let our pride show openly as military units march by.
Group uprisings gain banner headlines, but the work of veterans clubs and their auxiliaries, church organizations, businessmen's service clubs, charity groups and others continue to do fine work for their fellow man and country.
("Crown thy good with brotherhood.")
Yes, it is time that we renew our pride of country, respect for the flag and support that which is best for this nation of the people, by the people and for the people.
Recognize that our 50-star flag still waves "over the land of the free and home of the brave."
Jim Sherman, Sr. is president of Sherman Publications, Inc. He has penned "Jim's Jottings" since 1955.