A Veterans Day Tale of Woe
by Howard Nemerov
This unpleasant experience began with a simple inquiry: Were we coming to the banquet honoring veterans, being held at the local high school?
I had previously declined a Tea Party invitation to speak at this venue, asking promoters: How can we celebrate Liberty when the law makes us felons if we don’t agree to void our Second Amendment rights? (It’s a third degree felony in Texas to bring a firearm into a school’s premises.)
I expressed doubt about attending, based upon this reflection.
Their response was that this was “not so much celebrating liberty as it is recognizing those who have served in our military.”
But how can the two be separated? The mental compartmentalization resulting from rationalizing is a great concern of mine. Experience has taught that humans are not so much rational as rationalizing.
My reply: Veterans offered their lives to protect our once-in-history Constitution that actually acknowledges Divinely-endowed inalienable rights, and that the government is supposed to serve the People. Why should we then turn around and let the government tell us we are the servants, and that we may not enjoy the God-given rights that so many gave their lives to preserve? I cannot in good conscience support such a dishonor against those who have honor, foisted upon us by those without honor in the name of safety and security. We either honor the words of the Founders and reject the illusion that the government, even if it wanted to, could provide security at the expense of Liberty, or we dishonor those who served to uphold those Founding principles.
Unfortunately, they chose to label themselves Patriot–implying I’m not–and tell me that considering my attitude, my presence “would be an insult to those who served.”
Disheartened, I submitted to the Oath Keepers for judgment on the matter.
Stewart Rhodes, Oath Keepers’ Founder and President, replied:
“It’s disgusting and disturbing to have an event supposedly honoring veterans for their service “in defense of freedom” but also insisting that they disarm when they attend the event. Public schools are now nothing more than little Petri dishes of how the elites would like our whole nation to be – Bill of Rights free zones where only those in official power have the full rights of citizens, including the right to bear arms.”
It’s a sad day, when we start rationalizing to justify support for government infringement of our God-given, Constitutionally-acknowledged, and honor-defended Liberty.