Thursday, November 11, 2010

On Veteran's Day

Or, as it used to be known, Armistice Day, celebrating, as really Americans do best, a truce--the end of hostilities, with a mess all around, and one that still causes us trouble from Persia, and almost every other place beaten up by the war to end all wars, but did not.

So, the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month and some of us get a day off to work from home.

And, of course, there is always a quote from some president or another that is worth noting:

In your hands, my fellow citizens, more than mine, will rest the final success or failure of our course. Since this country was founded, each generation of Americans has been summoned to give testimony to its national loyalty. The graves of young Americans who answered the call to service surround the globe.

Now the trumpet summons us again -- not as a call to bear arms, though arms we need -- not as a call to battle, though embattled we are -- but a call to bear the burden of a long twilight struggle, year in and year out, "rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation,"² a struggle against the common enemies of man: tyranny, poverty, disease, and war itself.

Can we forge against these enemies a grand and global alliance, North and South, East and West, that can assure a more fruitful life for all mankind? Will you join in that historic effort?

In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility -- I welcome it. I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generation. The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it. And the glow from that fire can truly light the world.

And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.

My fellow citizens of the world, ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.

Finally, whether you are citizens of America or citizens of the world, ask of us here the same high standards of strength and sacrifice which we ask of you. With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own.

So, on his behalf and mine, may I ask if next time you are asked to vote (which really is not asking as much as we have our military), that you find a way to do it.

The video is not mine; nor is the song, but it is music I think of every year when this day comes around.

Paul Simon - Armistice Day
Uploaded by johnnyfnc. - Explore more music videos.

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