Military service is, thankfully, not a tradition in my family. So, the only real memories of Veteran's Day that I have come solely from my childhood and having the day off school. And what American kid doesn't love having a day off of school? Woo Hoo! But seriously, I hate the military because I hate war. Hate it, hate it, hate it. No good reason for it either -- although I'd agree that going to war when the US is invaded might be justified as a temporary solution. Otherwise, I see very little evidence that problems can't be resolved without violence, i.e. peacefully, with sincere words and ethical actions. But, until everyone thinks the same way as me, I guess I have to live in a world where stopping violence or abuse or oppression with violence or abuse or oppression is the acceptable, even preferred, norm. Despite my personal feelings about war, and even military recruitment practices (that's another blog entry) I am still grateful for those Americans that have enlisted in the military, especially with the knowledge that they might be called to serve (and die). And I am grateful that we have a day reserved to honor people that have served and sacrificed. Both of my grandfathers served, Grandpa Dean in the US Army Air Corps and Grandpa Johnny in the US Navy. And while they have passed on, I am proud this Veteran's Day to put aside my personal beliefs about the war to remember and honor them for their service and sacrifice.