Today is Veteran’s Day in the US. I have mixed feelings about celebrating this day. I certainly honor the men and women — from my family — and people I’ve never met. I respect that they are willing to risk their lives to keep me safe and guard my basic rights to freedom. I admire the ability of those that give up their day-to-day freedoms: what they can wear, where they live, what time they rise in the morning — all so that I can be free.
But in truth, I wish that there was no need for a Veteran’s Day — so I find it sad and disheartening that after so many wars — we still have a military and therefore need a day to honor those that had to fight. What would the world be like if all the men and women that have served by being prepared to lay down their lives — instead could prepare to serve peacefully by serving the greater good of all humanity.
Sometimes this happens — case in point our military presence in the Philippines today to bring food, shelter, and medical supplies to those in need. What if all the money we spent on guns, ammo, tanks instead was spent on medicine, food and shelter all the time?
To me there is not a level to a miracle just as there is not a level to a war. In order to have a war two sides have to take a stance that each is right and each is more concerned with being RIGHT than with being KIND.
Yesterday, I started to have a disagreement with my brother over whether he told me about being able to get a book cheaper at a different store than where I purchased it. In the middle of digging my heals in I stopped and said, “You’re right.” I don’t know if he was or not but at that moment it mattered more to me that I was kind to my brother than that I proved I was right.
One might argue that there was a difference in degree from this to a war. Since I am more interested in being kind than right — believe as you choose. I do ask, however, that you consider this — how many times have you turned on the nightly news to hear of a stabbing or a shooting because two or more people disagreed about something? Have you seen road rage before — I have — someone choosing to think they were wronged speeding after another person in a vehicle now turned into a weapon because they are more interested in being right than kind.
I read today about a woman who apparently screamed at a young man checking her out at the store because he was too slow. He also had a form of autism. What if the choice was to be kind instead of right — what a different turn of events would have unfolded. Click here if you’d like to read the Facebook post.
My Aunt Ronnie was in the military long ago. Unfortunately, I do not have her photo. She was raised in the north and stationed in the south. One day a little boy of about age 5 came to the guard station at the base and said he really needed to pee could he use the bathroom. The guard apparently told him no coloreds allowed. My Aunt took the little boy by the hand and took him to the latrine. And yes, this event landed her in the commanding officer’s office. She was told that although her heart was in the right place — the laws of that location — dictated different actions.
I ask you to stand with my Aunt Ronnie and do what is kind rather that what is right. I’m obviously not asking you to risk your life and if someone is trying to rape you it is fine in that instance to kick the bastard in the nuts. But afterwards when you are safe — don’t turn it into a war — hating his mother for raising him wrong or his teachers for not getting him help or whatever — don’t turn it into a war — and hate all men.
I have seen too much hatred because someone of a particular race or religion or whatever did something wrong and every one of that race or religion or whatever is condemned. Trust me as a person disabled with MCS — I have been told SO MANY times that it is a person’s RIGHT to wear a fragrance or burn a scented candle. I suppose it is — however — I think we both might be a little happier if you might consider choosing to be kind rather than right.
So today, I have sent emails to some people who served our country and I write this post to thank everyone who has served and hope you do the same. But tomorrow and all the rest of the year — I ask that when given the choice between choosing being right or being kind — please stop the fight and chose kind. Maybe a child will watch and learn from you and someday that child will be President of the US or the head of some other country and when they have the choice of sending troops to war or choosing to be kind — KIND will win.
For every cause there is an effect. So many people spend their time trying to change the effect when what we need to do is change the cause. I feel that it dishonors our veterans when after a few hundred years, governments have not learned to be kind, have not learned to compromise, have not learned that EVERY life has value, if our country did learn these things then so many of our people would not have PTSD and illnesses from chemical exposures, and physical disabilities. So many of our people would be holding their children in their arms instead of their children holding a folded up flag by their parents’ gravesides.
So THANK YOU TO ALL VETERANS who served so that I as an American woman had the right to write this post and the RIGHT to choose KINDNESS. I salute you.