In the wake of a national political campaign that has shaken the country to its core and in the continuing consequences of its aftermath, we are observing a Veterans Day this year in many ways unlike any other in recent memory.
This year, a day that began as Armistice Day marking the end of World War I in 1918 is a sorely needed time for Americans to set aside their differences, take a deep breath, unite and pay tribute to all those who have served their country in times of war and peace. This year’s Veterans Day should unite us together for at least one day to honor those who epitomize the ideals that represent the best of this nation — honor, dedication and sacrifice.
In a year when vitriol has become the primary currency of discussion and distraction has become a national sport, it is even more critical to remember that thousands of Americans who still serve in theaters of war halfway around the world. Remember them? You should. Especially now. For those on active duty, and for all veterans past and present, the principle of service to country is not an idealistic code reserved for academic discussions or patriotic sermons. The fact is all veterans and those currently serving in our armed forces are proof that service to country is a living principle that forms the bedrock of our democracy.