It is appropriate that Thanksgiving and Veterans Day occur in the same month. Many of the freedoms that we enjoy every day are a result of hard work by our veterans. We should always be grateful for the sacrifices they have made to keep our country safe.
The tradition of Veterans Day originated as "Armistice Day" in 1919, a year after a temporary end of hostilities was declared between the Allied Nations and Germany during the First World War. Following World War II and the Korean War, "Armistice Day" became "Veterans Day," a day dedicated to honoring all American veterans.
We should all take time out of our day to thank someone who served our country and to reflect on the sacrifices soldiers made to protect us. The meaning behind Veterans Day should not be something we only recognize one day during the year. We benefit from their service every day, so it is asking little to take at least a few moments and truly appreciate what they have done.
I suggest, if you have the chance, to attend a ceremony honoring past heroes. Events such as those provide us all a great opportunity to show our appreciation in person, and also to hear first-hand accounts from men and women who have been on the battlefield. It is things like that which can make the most impact on us. Listening to their stories or seeing a cemetery full of miniature U.S. flags waving in the breeze is a powerful experience.
Primarily it gives us the chance to take a step back and put things in perspective. Sometimes as human beings, we let our priorities get out of line. We certainly see this from time to time in politics. Debate and discussion can get heated and civility is not always our primary concern. Veterans Day, however, is a day when these shortcomings should be set aside and is a time when all Americans should come together and show collective appreciation for the men and women who make our forums for debate and disagreement possible.
So it is important that we all devote some of our valuable time this Veterans Day to express our gratitude for all of those brave Americans who gave their valuable time, and lives, for us.
Rep. Thompson may be reached by calling (614) 644-8728, e-mailing District93@ohr.state.oh.us, or writing to State Rep. Andy Thompson, 77 South High St., Columbus,