on this day

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In 1970, my draft status was 1-0. I objected to war. In the thirty some years since, veterans day has always been a day of sadness; though I object to war, I support veterans. In my mind, those two just go together.

When I was much younger, ten or eleven, I sat in a theater watching a new epic war film called "The Longest Day". More powerful emotions than any I'd ever felt swept over me when I heard the pipers piping the Scottish troops ashore. At that moment I would have gone, too. To the sounds of bagpipes I would have gladly taken arms against any threat. My heart still races today. When I see the uniforms, when I hear the pipes and the snap of flags in a breeze, a lone bugler playing a solemn Taps, I'd take up arms. What is it in the spirit of men?

Veteran's Day seems engineered to do just that. When the overwhelming sadness should be making us all say "never again", something stirs deep in my heart, anxious for a call to arms.

Penn State
April 18, Symposium 2009; reimagine.
New content. Symposium 2008.Digital Commons at Penn State. Improve the workplace; hire for variety.

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