I have heard people say that today’s Millennial generation (18-35 year olds) is the worst generation ever, that they are just a bunch of self centered brats that have little or no appreciation or respect for the sacrifices of others. To back up their argument, they point to the emerging PC culture, terms like micro-aggression, an expectation that college campuses (campi?) be “safe spaces” where nobody’s feelings will get hurt, and the ever-growing number of able-bodied people on the welfare rolls. There is no doubt that a segment of Millennials believes that they are owed something by the government (taxpayers). They take it for granted that they will be taken care of by those that are willing to make sacrifices so they can play Grand Theft Auto, sip their choco-mocha-latte’s and whine because their parents actually want them to move out of the house before they get married.
As the father of two Millennials, I have a different opinion. Both of my sons, and many of their peers, are members of the first all volunteer military to serve our country in more than 200 years. My youngest is a Captain in the Army Reserve; my oldest is an Army Major. Like the generations of soldiers that served before them, they know first-hand the sacrifices required to keep this country great. In fact, for the first time in many years, they are both at home and able to share this year’s Port Aransas Veteran’s Day ceremony with my trophy wife and I.
As the stereo typical Millennial is often accused of, I would venture to say most of us, at least at times, have taken our freedoms for granted. I would be willing to bet that a chunk of us Baby Boomers and Gen X’ers have treated Veteran’s Day as just another three-day weekend without giving much thought to those that it honors. I’ll tell you that there was a time when I did not appreciate, let alone, comprehend their sacrifices. As the proud father of two solders, Veteran’s Day has become personal to me. I will be eternally grateful for the men and women that serve our country in the armed forces. I have a special respect for that less than one percent who have answered the call; I now understand the sacrifices that their families make as well.
Yes, there are some in the Millennial generation that are real slackers. As with every generation that preceded them and probably every generation that will follow them there are those that take advantage of the sacrifices made by others. But every generation, including this one, has also produced a small number of people ready to defend us from the evil in the world. The vast majority of today’s armed services are Millennials. Our veterans, whether they are from the Greatest Generation, or Baby Boomers, or from Generation X, or a Millennial, are a part of who we are as a community and they are the reason we are able to live in a free society. We all owe them our everlasting gratitude.
To all of you that are serving or have ever served please accept my sincerest thank you. May God bless you and your families.
Leave a Reply