In terms of American rights and freedoms- The Dept. of Defense has no more say than the Dept. of Agriculture.
Veterans love to get in on the self-promotion:
As the decades of undeclared/unwon wars stack up (The Department of Defense track record goes back to 1949.) the greater the cultural urge to glorify people who do, or did time in uniform.
It turns out The Troops were in no hurry to enable all adults to act on their right to vote.
US Military operations conducted in the 1940s, 50s & 60s didn’t get the job done.
It wasn’t until July of 1971 that 18 year old adults could take delivery on one of the freedoms we hear so much about.
Why the need for a 1965 Voting Rights Act if overseas military operations somehow secured voting rights?
Hey school teachers– if veterans fought for our right to vote- how come women were not allowed full voting rights at the end of WWI?
Things have changed over the past 40 years- even though we’ve had a modern & powerful military force this entire time.
I grew up in the 60s & 70s- back in the days when veterans were not seen as a separate part of American society.
Veterans were all around- church, school, Boy Scout leaders, family, the neighborhood, etc. It was all just an average thing.
People weren’t stepping over to say “Thanks for your service” to my Dad- who did time in the Navy in the 50s- but looked just like anyone else out in public.
Meet a veteran who isn’t shy about going out & grabbing a couple free meals- it’s a proud thing:
The cultural move towards glorifying military service may be some sort of post-Vietnam guilt at work. The guilt doesn’t seem to work towards shutting down failed wars that never end.
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Late Winter – Whidbey Island