Supporting Our Troops

Supporting our troops, but not supporting a war sounds contradictory to some people; however, by taking time to consider this it is easy to realize the validity and possibility of it.

If a person supports a war, it means he or she values war over peace. What that also means is that if given a choice between war and peace, he or she would choose war because they feel conflict is a good thing. A necessary thing. Perhaps even a thing that will make the world a better place provided his or her side win the war.

If a person says they support our troops, it means something entirely different. This means that he or she supports the men and women who choose to wear the uniform of our Armed Services and know that the sailor or soldier fighting does so because our government tells them to do so. It means that the supporter would rather see a war come to an end, so that those fighting in it may come home to their families and friends. They care about the people involved in the war more than the war itself.

A person supporting our troops wants to bring them home rather than send them out. In fact, they would rather not have to send our troops into harm’s way in the first place and advocate peaceful resolutions to conflicts rather than sending troops to war in the first place.

A person who supports our troops also advocates that there is assistance for our troops when they return home. He or she pushes for programs to help returning troops to readjust to civilian life. The supporter demands that there be programs in place to help returning soldiers and sailors deal with the emotional and psychological baggage that comes from being involved in war. They also advocate for jobs, healthcare, affordable housing, and even a fair pension for our returning veterans.

Those who support our troops are there to lend an ear to the veteran who needs to talk about what happened, because veterans need to talk about and process what happened to them in a non-judgmental climate so he or she can exorcise the demons of war from his or her mind.

Supporting our troops is more than a ribbon on a car.

Supporting our troops is more than a wreath or wearing an armband or a poppy on the lapel.

Supporting our troops is more than waving a flag.

Supporting our troops is more than just saying ‘Thank you’ to them or applauding them for their service.

Supporting our troops is a lifestyle.

Supporting our troops is remembering all our soldiers and sailors in our thoughts and prayers on a daily basis, from the young recruit to the seasoned veteran in the foxhole or retirement home.

Supporting our troops is more than lip service given to sound patriotic.

Supporting our troops is very different from supporting a war. It is not just semantics or rhetoric. It is valuing human life over a bloodied field.