On November 11, many countries across the world will celebrate Armistice Day or Remembrance Day, an anniversary of the end of World War I. Renamed Veterans Day in the U.S. in 1954, November 11 is now a day of recognition for all who have served in the United States military, those still living and those who have passed on.
Odds are good that your son has acted out being a soldier, or expressed a desire to be a soldier when he grows up. As parents, we should encourage our children to have a healthy respect for those in uniform. No matter what side of the political fence you sit on, thousands of men and women have served so you have the freedom to choose what you believe.
Growing up in a military town, there was never a doubt in my mind that our military members were to be shown respect, and I want my sons to have that same understanding. I want them to be the kind of young man that recognizes a veteran and thanks him or her for their service.
Recently, my eldest Snazzy Lad watched “Hacksaw Ridge” with us. (If you are unfamiliar with the story, it follows a young man named Desmond Doss who enlisted during World War II but refused to carry a rifle. He wanted to be a medic to help save lives, not take them.) Now, I realize that Hollywood had a hand in making the movie, but the overall impression my son got from the story was that there are different ways to serve, but everyone can do something. He really admires Desmond Doss and will occasionally point out “something Desmond Doss would do”.
This weekend I would encourage you to look for a way to say thank you to a veteran, whether it be at a parade or at a grocery store. Our children learn best by example. Whose example do you want them following?
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