18 October, 2005

Why They Fight

I occasionally go through stretches of feeling guilty that my life is so safe, quiet, and "normal," while the men and women of our military are serving in my place...facing down the darker things in hopes that I will never have to--a sacrifice on their part for which I feel there can be no true recompense. When I have shared those feelings with the warriors I am privileged to know, they have said similar things to one friend who once wrote:

You represent the best of what we fight for - your continued existence makes the sacrifices worthwhile.

You've thanked me, and others I am sure, for our service.

We want to thank you in return, for being an example of what we fight for - the one who rocks the cradle, teaches the kids, raises the next generation to believe in something as beautiful as music.
Perhaps some might say that is a bit Norman Rockwell-ish, but the message I heard is that we all have our callings and our roles; our country wouldn't be what it is if we were all warriors. I was reminded of that when I found this, A Letter to the Republic for Which We Stand:
Yes, we’re soldiers, but who wants to live this way? What man enjoys being threatened all the time? Show me that man and I’ll show you a fool. But ask me to show you a person who is willing to live like this so that Americans back home can live more safely, and we’ll show you a couple hundred thousand.
Go read it all, It's near-poetry.