On our last walk yesterday, a little black dog came bolting down towards me. After Miley inspected it to make sure it was safe, the little schnauzer came down and sniffed me all over. She was very friendly and paying no mind to the big yellow wolf running around me.
A learned from the woman who was looking after the dog that the schnauzer’s name was Schatzi, and the reason why she was so keen on running me down is that she was hoping that I was her owner.
Schatzi’s owner is a soldier serving in Afghanistan, and every time she sees an adult male human, she races up to see if it might be her owner.
I was not looking for a Veterans Day post. I generally tend to avoid writing these posts. It’s not because I do not honor those who serve, but it is because in recent years, there has been a tendency to use our patriotic days to celebrate nationalism and militarism.
I don’t celebrate either.
But I do celebrate those who serve. They do not make the decisions about where they fight. In a nation like ours, that decision is made by civilians, and that’s why I’ve always felt that the best way to honor our service members is to know about the world and make sure that we are making the best decision about when to use force.
When her owner comes home, little Schatzi will be thrilled. I can just imagine how loud her happy whines will be.
And this is the other thing about Veterans Day. It’s not just the service members who must make sacrifices. Those on the home front do, too.
So while we honor those who have served and those who are serving, let’s keep in mind what war actually is.
It’s not a football game.
It has costs.