Monday, September 8, 2008

Service to One's Country

Forgive me for waxing (in a minimalist way) political.  Must be something in the air.
Lately the Republicans have done an excellent job defining service to one's country, and its off-shoot heroism, in a narrow and militarist way.  Soldiers, they claim, even those fighting in wars that are questionable, are the only true recipients of these badges of honor.  This is simply a lie.  While many soldiers are unquestionably serving their country to the best of their knowledge, and may commit acts that are easily pegged as heroism, there are many other citizens who are solidly committed to their country's service, and are involved in largely unchampioned heroic acts.  A very abbreviated list contains: doctors, police & fire(wo)men, teachers, writers and journalists, clergy, factory workers, miners, environmentalists, librarians, community organizers, social workers, and so forth.  The Democrats have again allowed the Repulbicans to define national service and heroism, and cast it in an exclusively military light, just as they had previously done to patriotism.
It's time to take back these words and redraw their definitions.

No comments: