I come from a long line of military servicemen and elected to not join up -- philosophically, it doesn't work for me. However - I respect and regularly thank those who do. Let's take a minute to consider all of those serving, those have served, those who have died or have not fully returned.
The American military has done two very remarkable things this year that I want to recognize - with the permanent removal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," any human can put their life down for their countrymen regardless of their sexual orientation. And for the very first time in many generations, it appears all branches of the service are finally beginning to take mental illness and post-traumatic stress disorders seriously. Caring for our people also means caring for our soldiers as well - as it always should have.
Let's all hope both of these long-overdue advances and a more stable world help us get to a day where fewer fighters are needed and nowhere near the number of little flags need to fly over fresh graves. It's a big dream..