Those Who Stand! by Morgan Gates
On this day ninety-nine years ago, the war we now call World War I ended! On that day it was not yet known as WWI though it was called: The Great War, or the War to end all Wars! It ended with an armistice that was signed on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month! The day we now use to remember all Veterans! Of course, we know today that WWI was not the last war nor even the greatest!
War is, unfortunately, part of the human experience. We are by nature an aggressive and predatory species it is the reason we have large brains, predators must be smarter than prey! The brain is a biologically expensive organ! There must be a high return on investment to be able to afford it. War is, therefore, perhaps a necessary part of man’s existence here on Earth! But war does not have to be our constant state of life, for we are the most intelligent of God’s creation, smart enough to figure out how to not fight! We trade, we negotiate, and we, set up laws and other deterrents to restrain our baser emotions. As time has passed we have grown and progressed and done a fairly good job of keeping the peace, at least in this country. The USA has become a beacon of peace and prosperity in our modern world. If history has taught us anything, however, it is that the wolf always lurks near the door waiting for us to let our guard down so that he can pounce.
We here in the United States have been marvelously blessed in that we have seen very little of the specter of war on our doorsteps. Since the end of the Civil War, most of our fighting has been on faraway shores thanks to "Those Who Stand"--the men and women of our armed services--that have taken our fights to the enemy’s doorsteps rather than allowing it to come to our own!
But wait a minute you ask, aren’t you a son of the South? What about the Civil War – what about your great grandfather the Rebel soldier you ask?
True! I write about the South during the War of Northern Aggression, and in some people’s eye’s today anyone who remembers that time must be disloyal, but that could not be farther from the truth! The Civil War was a terrible tragedy for all involved. In effect, it was a massive domestic dispute. But when it was over some of the same men who fought each other worked together to rebuild the South, build the West, and make the U.S.A into the great nation it is today. Some later fought beside each other in our next war. Their descendants fought the Germans and the Japanese, and Chinese and North Vietnamese in our 20th-century wars. Perhaps one of America’s greatest assets is to make those who were once our enemies our friends!
Today descendants of these soldiers in Blue and Gray plus those whose descendants came to the land of the free at later dates still stand ready! Ready to fight to preserve our country, but then offer a hand to those who we have just defeated. Our men and women in uniform still stand ready to protect us, so thank a Vet when you meet them! Happy Veterans Day – but wait there is more!
Our country is welded together with the fires of war and the blood of patriots and made stronger by the glue of forgiveness. It is also true that many of yesterday’s enemies are today’s friend, but never forget that evil still exists and it is always looking for new ways to bring us down. Our nation faces new and even more insidious enemies. Not so much a wolf at the door this time, more a virus in the blood. Those who hate America, both foreign and domestic, are spreading hate, fear, and division among us by any means necessary! The time is at hand for all of us to be prepared, for we must all be ready to be among “THOSE WHO STAND” for America!