Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Every journalist should celebrate Veterans Day

With the local library rightly closed yesterday, I was not able to write a salute to the veterans of this nation on their day.

And that was a bad oversight on my part. These brave men and women -- and their families -- are right to believe that their contributions are less appreciated let alone recognized in this nation. Homes have quit flying American flags. Parents and loved ones have quit receiving inquiries from neighbors and friends as to the welfare of their loved ones in harm's way.

The front page of yesterday's New York Times did not even include a story about veterans. What is wrong with them? Every journalist should set aside Veterans Day to prominently celebrate and recognize these men and women who put their lives on the line to protect our freedom to write.

My father and eight uncles served in WWII. My nephew and cousin are in Iraq. Then there are the families left behind who must fend for themselves in the plummeting economy. One quarter of the homeless people in this nation are veterans. Our hospitals and rehab centers are overrun with veterans not receiving good treatment.

Finally, there are the loved ones of those vets who never returned from the war. I am privileged to know many, like Mike and Molly Morrell, Eva Savage, Pam Creager, Patricia Shaw, Ginger Ford and several others who bear Gold Stars for their sacrifice and lifelong grief for their loss.

For veterans here with us and now gone, thank you with all my heart and passion for preserving, protecting and defending the Constitution of the United States of America. You make my profession and my welfare possible.

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