Originally written in 2012, I repost this every year because, tragically, the story never changes.
On this Memorial Day, my heart is broken wide open for military families who have lost their loved ones over the last few years. I can’t fathom the pain of not being able to hold my son or daughter ever again, nor can I imagine being a son who lost his father just when he was needed most.
I can’t understand what it must be like for a family to be torn apart just as it was being built, and I’ll probably never know the feeling of being told I can never kiss my wife again because she is never coming home. I can only empathize with the many people who have experienced these things as these moments are beyond my comprehension.
With every day that passes, US military men and women are still dying all over the world, and as my heart breaks hearing about their deaths, I’ve got to ask myself—what are these brave men and women dying for?
When joining the military, they knew that one day they could be in a position to sacrifice their lives, but I can’t imagine any of them thought they would be doing it for a cause other than protecting their family. But, that’s exactly what they are being asked to do day in and day out.
Their lives and selflessness should be precious and valued, and never used to protect the interest of foreign nations, crony corporations or out of touch demagogues. They should be honored for all they are willing to give, but we should be outraged that their lives are valued so little by our government that they were willing to sacrifice thousands of America’s finest people and destroy thousands of other lives because they have some self-righteous vision of America as world police or nation builder.
It is the US government who has created the very problems of turmoil and destabilization for which politicians justify the ongoing interventions and perpetual war that led to the turmoil and destabilization in the first place. And so, the circle of destruction, loss of freedom, and justification of military and economic intervention never ends.
The government sells these interventions to the American people by saying they are “keeping the peace” or keeping us “free” or “protecting our interests,” and they do this all with a straight face as they inhibit our rights in the US. They do this as they remove our ability to provide for our families and give our children a future by impeding personal and economic freedom at every turn. Protect us? What liars.
On multiple continents for far too many years, completely unnecessary wars have been fought and countless lives lost all because our government can’t mind its own business and continues to justify death overseas because they don’t have the guts to do the right things at home. It is cowardly and disgraceful that these lives were sacrificed because of such arrogance and stupidity.
People in the military deserve better. They deserve our admiration and support. They deserve to come home, and to never be placed in the way of unnecessary harm ever again. They deserve so much better than what our government is giving them.
So, on this Memorial Day, grieve with these families who have been torn apart, who have given all they can with the greatest of intentions. Take a moment to remember what they were willing to do. But, also join me in condemning the government who wrongfully forced this sacrifice upon them. Join me in calling for an end to these economic and military wars. Let’s unite our military men and women with their families by bringing them home, and making a commitment to never unnecessarily risk their lives again.
They are better than their government. Honor them.
I myself have never been an isolationist. I favor the very opposite of isolation: diplomacy, free trade, and freedom of travel. The real isolationists are those who impose sanctions and embargoes on countries and peoples across the globe because they disagree with the internal and foreign policies of their leaders. The real isolationists are those who choose to use force overseas to promote democracy, rather than seeking change through diplomacy, engagement, and by setting a positive example. The real isolationists are those who isolate their country in the court of world opinion by pursuing needless belligerence and war that have nothing to do with legitimate national security concerns.Dr Ron Paul