Since 1789, Congress has declared war 11 times.
And this doesn’t include the countless military engagements to which our men and women; brothers and sisters; fathers, mothers, children, friends and neighbors have been sent over the centuries – all going on full faith that they are pursuing a noble cause, that those who issue those orders are doing so with deliberation and pure intentions. Orders that that may require, and too frequently have indeed resulted in, the ultimate sacrifice of their lives.
For this Memorial Day, we solemnly reflect on those tragic lives cut short. For our freedom they have lost theirs to build a life, to grow a family, to make friends, to experience art, sport, music. To create and contribute to that great symphony known as the human race.
We should honor those who have lost their lives, and at the same time not glorify the devastation and suffering that armed conflict brings – to both the aggressor and to the innocent.
Every life lost is a tragedy – even when it’s for a truly noble cause, but especially so when motives of the politician are not in about defense of our nation, but rather in the pursuit of greed, power, or extremist ideology.
We can spend a few minutes today reflecting on those who have lost their lives in service to our country and offer our prayers to their families and friends who have had to carry on without that light in their lives.
For us, the citizens of the United States, there is no better way to honor these people than to elect leaders who fully comprehend the magnitude of the military decisions they’re entrusted with. Leaders who are capable of absorbing the information available, capable of building a team that is honorable, competent, and trustworthy who offer advice that is truly in the best interests of our nation. Leaders who can feel the weight of every life lost carrying out the orders that come from their office.
But most of all – we need to elect leaders who are fully committed to peace and only call upon the men and women of our country to take up arms when absolutely necessary.
See other Monday Musings from past weeks.