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Veterans Day Share This on LinkedIn   Tweet This   Forward This

11 November 2021

We inadvertently caught ourselves working at 3:30 this morning, a national holiday, and horrified, scurried back to bed in an effort to restart the day.

Blue Angels. Roaring toward the Golden Gate late in the afternoon.

It's supposed to be a day to honor all those who served in our nation's armed forces. But when we did rise and shine at a respectable hour, we were surprised to see children going to school.

Maybe they'll learn about Veterans Day.

We confess to having some mixed feelings today, the first Veterans Day after the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, indeed on Congress itself. The last people we would have expected to participate in that "affront to society and the law," as Judge Royce C. Lamberth called it this week in sentencing Scott Fairbanks to prison, would have been veterans.

And yet.

In My Veteran Problem, former Marine Elliot Ackerman writes about his frustration that we see veterans as "all fundamentally broken, physically, emotionally and psychologically."

At first he was tempted to blame the media but two veterans convinced him otherwise.

After all, it wasn't negative media coverage of veterans that caused us to storm the Capitol in disproportionate numbers. And it isn't the media that has led us to commit suicide at nearly twice the national average or that has caused our chronic homelessness -- both indicators of veterans' struggle to reassimilate into the society we served.

His initial defensiveness about veterans at the Capitol was, he decided, misguided.

In the end, he writes, "I'm not only rooting for America's veterans to confront the extremism that has infiltrated our ranks; I'm hoping a broader segment of America will confront it as well."

Where do we enlist?

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