Scouring through the news sites online, I saw that a true American hero was murdered while taking a fellow veteran shooting at a gun range in Texas. Chris Kyle, a retired Navy Seal, extremely decorated with over 160 confirmed kills, was shot and killed by a 25 year old Marine reservist. Upon reading the comments to these articles, I was completely flabbergasted. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. There were actually posts from fellow Americans that said “he had it coming” and “he got what he deserved”. Others posted that it was karma that he had been murdered. It was at this point that I began to wonder just how patriotic Americans really are.
I was raised in a military family. My grandfather, father, mother, two brothers, and a niece are veterans. I was taught that you respect those who serve and show gratitude for their service. I eventually joined the military myself, enlisting in the United States Navy at 18 years of age. I served with pride. As a veteran, I remember those who died, those I served with, and honor those who serve to this day. I know that each and every service member has signed a blank check that is payable up to the cost of their life to defend the liberties and freedoms that we enjoy. However, I was also raised to know that not everyone will share this same point of view.
Those who have never served, those who laugh when American soldiers die, those who protest when soldiers are buried are not patriotic. They may be proud to be American but the are not patriotic. They are those who do not know that soldiers do not fight for glory. They fight for the man or woman next to them. They serve because they love their country so much that they are willing to sacrifice their own life to insure that the nation’s freedoms and liberties endure. They fight to protect those who cannot protect themselves. Not every soldier agrees with the wars they fight. They follow the orders that are given. This is something their critics should understand. It is the reason that those who show such unpatriotic behavior should hang their heads in shame. You don’t have to agree with the wars that take place. Hold the anger you possess against the government itself. Nothing but pride and respect should be shown for every service member who serves. Show nothing but respect and honor for those who have paid the ultimate price for you freedoms and liberties.
When I look around this great nation and see how those serving and those who have served are treated, it makes me feel ill. If you cannot support those who protect you, cannot show one shred of gratitude for those who have protected you, you do not have the right to claim how patriotic you are. Sit idly by and remain silent for you have not the right to judge those who have given all so that you can speak your mind. Enlist and serve, protect and defend. Then you will have earned the right to say whatever you want. Until then you have no idea about the people you mock in their death.
– The Ranter