Since this is Veterans’ Day, it is customary to thank the men and women who have served our country in the armed forces. This is an excellent custom and I appreciate the sacrifices that have been made for the country.
However, we should not limit our appreciation to having one day in their honor. Rather, we should ensure that the people who serve the country are treated with the respect that they have earned by such service.
Currently, we are actively involved in two wars (or one, if you want to group everything under the “war on terror). This situation will, obviously, create more veterans. Further, people will come out of these wars with serious physical and mental injuries. In the past, the United States has failed such soldiers. One example of this has been the Walter Reed scandal. There are, sad to say, many other examples as well including the poor living conditions that soldiers have faced in the United States. Such treatment of soldiers is morally unacceptable. Their service has earned them better treatment. Actually, merely being human beings entitles them to better treatment than some of them have received.
People in the government have been quick to talk about patriotism and supporting the troops. However, they have been rather slow to actually do things that would support the troops. Hopefully the situation will improve under the Obama administration.