As of late, there has been much confusion between Veterans Day and Memorial Day, and I think I know why. We understand how to honor living Veterans. We can celebrate them, thank them, fight for their healthcare, and tangibly affect them. But how, exactly, do we honor the deceased? Attending a Memorial Day celebration and decorating a grave stone are important options, however, I would like to suggest a few other ways we can honor our fallen heroes all year round.
The first way we can honor fallen soldiers is to study their history. There seems to be a concerted effort to delete history in general. Whether it is by diluting the faith of the founding fathers, distorting the intent of the constitution, or denying the real reasons wars are waged, truth is being removed from the public square. Our utilitarian society has destroyed the beauty and the importance of studying history. Whenever a college student decides to major in history, they are asked, “What are you going to do with that? Become a history teacher?” However, from now on, students majoring in history should answer, “I am going to use my knowledge to honor fallen soldiers.” We must never stop studying history. Let us be known for our knowledge of our fallen heroes, not our obsession with the latest reality star. Some believe studying history is boring, but take heart! It doesn’t have to be that way! Start by reading “If you can keep it,” written by the always entertaining Eric Metaxas, and go from there.
Secondly, if we want to honor fallen soldiers we must engage in the political process. Understanding our nation’s history naturally propels us to be more active about the present. We can esteem fallen soldiers by working to protect the freedoms for which they gave their lives. This is done by voting at the local and federal levels, supporting important legislation, and working to get the right leaders in place. Too many citizens vote for funding instead of freedom which ironically puts both freedom and funding in jeopardy.
Lastly, to honor the fallen soldier, we must fight for the right to life. When we vote to protect freedom, we have to remember that our freedoms end where the God given rights of others begin. There is no right more foundational to our country than the right to life. Everything, quite literally, begins there. Before we can debate any other right of man, we first must allow the unborn the right to live. The brave heroes of our nation fought on the front lines, left their homes and families, and gave their lives to preserve the lives of others. The least we can do is to follow in their footsteps by fighting for the lives of the innocent, defenseless, unborn babies that desperately need our protection.
Today is an important day to take some time to truly remember the sacrifice of the brave soldiers that fought for the freedoms we tend to take for granted. Let us pray for and support any families we know that have been tragically changed by the loss of a dear loved one. And let us honor them year round by studying the truth of their history, engaging in the political process for freedom, and fighting for the right to life.