I was looking at pictures of team mates, squad leaders and commanders on the walls in the hallway. Each had the same determined look and kind hearts; only those who have a true passion for this kind of work can muster up for a formal photo. It occurred to me that it has been 18 years since 9-11. September 11 2001… That date, those events and the transformation of so many individuals that followed, has taken a generation. Someone who was just born then, can now enlist. They can look back on their elder siblings, parents, heroes and warrior poets and make the choice to do the same. And back then it was a choice to transform. Maybe there was a catalyst for some, but it was a choice for all, and those who made it about others rather than themselves were ready before they knew it. Everyone who did things which a layman may call extraordinary, did so because it was the right thing to do.
For some, the days that followed are longed for. The time and reference when everything irrelevant, divisive and untrue seemed to go by the wayside, and the best of America was proudly relegated to Americans. Like a college student who performs best cramming for an exam, a boot who tired and hung over aces his PT, we did the right thing. Some will argue that with the generations of excuse-makers, keyboard commandos and fake masculinity we are far removed from the warrior ethos and virtues of those days. I would offer that all this is, and was, a transition. A still adolescent nation at work.
At the human level we haven’t changed. Not much. When the question comes up if draft should be considered, I say a resounding “hell no”! Of the average there are the few who make a difference. And back then, and over the conflict to this day, it is still the few who make it shine. It should be reserved for those few to be allowed to be in a position to make that difference, while by our country’s virtue – everyone has that choice. The essence of freedom, is that you have it. What you do with it, depends on you.
Individually, people behave as they always did. They hate, love, prejudice, diversify and perform the same. Politicians and their nature really have not changed since the Roman times. Nor the warriors since the Hebrews. Media functions the way it has since the first type writer. What’s different is the delivery.
The best of those who made this country the best are no longer with us. And on this day, as on so many other days for a lot of us, we remember them and what was sacrificed. Why we got there, and how it is that we are here. To make this country what it was envisioned to be, and what it still is. Despite anything. America.
*The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the original authors and contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Spotter Up Magazine, the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.