11 November 2008

You're Welcome — At Least Some of You

My thoughts on Veterans' Day — as a veteran — are simple.

Thanks for veterans is best expressed not on 11 November, but on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November: Election Day. The act of voting is the best thanks that can be offered to veterans, because in the end that is what we put our butts on the line for. The ability to say who will govern you is not a privilege of the American system: It is the very foundation, both of the break from England and of everything done since. Our darkest days as a nation have resulted from restrictions on the right and ability to vote, more than from any particular ideology or policy.

So I give a big "you're welcome" to the 62% or so of registered American voters who thanked me a week ago today (more or less, allowing for early voting and abstentee ballots). Even if you didn't vote correctly (whatever the hell that means), you thanked me by voting.