Lance Scranton: In their debt
November 11, 2015
It's a debt we can never repay. We have history to look back on but recent times offer up scarce examples of a loss of freedom in our country. Sure, it's election season, and I could rant and rave about any particular group whose political bent either confuses or defames my traditional sensibilities. But, regardless of my particular identification as an elephant or a donkey — it's because of our veterans that I get to choose.
Veterans Day has become a tradition of celebratory lauding at Moffat County High School with soldiers as far back as WW II having been honored for their service to our country. Like the stories they tell, it's possible to understand just how special our form of freedom has held us in place for so many years. Their love of our country, of our values, of our position in the world allows such freedom to have existed for so many years. Sure, we sometimes disagree, we argue, we fight, we accuse, we even defame, but freedom allows for justice to find a place in the grand scheme of liberty.
I'm certainly not saying we're perfect. No people are and no form of government ever will be, but the values we hold as foundations of our American experience are protected by the soldier in a far away land who tells other people from other countries about America. Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness has inalienable rights. Now that's worth fighting for and the export of our ideals has had the accumulative effect of a desire to emigrate to such a land.
A curious regard flows through our collective conscience when we talk about the soldier. They are human beings like us, flawed by nature, imperfect by design but standing for us as they do. We feel a deep sense of respect and honor because they do for us that which we benefit from in so many ways but can never really appreciate — unless it is lost.
We would do well to remember the brave service member as we look around the world and see the results from those countries whose values and beliefs undermine the true nature of freedom. Freedom simply means the opportunity to choose a way forward from where we are right now and for all their sacrifice, commitment and duty, I salute them the best way I know how. I'll never know the sacrifice required, but I do know that I live a life of the free and exercise of my choices because of our veterans.
Thank you for your service to our country. I am daily in your debt.