I have often read interesting books and articles regarding what is considered our country’s greatest generation. The men and women of the World War II-era exemplified true American heroism.
Several years back I wrote an article about Honor Flight and how a local WWII veteran traveled to Washington, D.C. to visit the World War II Memorial through the help of this organization. Honor Flight is a non-profit organization that was created to honor American veterans for all their sacrifices. The organization transports America’s heroes to Washington, D.C. to visit and reflect upon their memorials. Top priority is given to World War II survivors, as an estimated 640 WWII veterans die each day across America.
As you can imagine, months of preparation go into one Honor Flight. When the government shutdown began on October 1, the National Park Service was instructed to close off certain federal lands, including historic parks and memorials, due to furloughed staff. Imagine the dismay when a group of Honor Flight World War II veterans attempted to visit their open-air memorial in Washington only to find barricades standing in their way. Did that stop these veterans? Absolutely not. These men and women, many in wheel chairs, busted through the iron barricades and would not be denied access to their memorial. I guess the government can attempt to take away access to a memorial, but it can’t take away the bravery that still runs through the veins of this generation.
Now I am not one to promote disobedience, but it is insane for the government to shutdown an open-air memorial that surely is sparsely staffed at best. I would bet that it took more staff to erect the barricades than the memorial has required in years. This situation would be like the Appling County government shutting down access to the Veterans Memorial located on the Courthouse grounds. Is the administration trying to make a point? What a cheap and small-minded way to allow partisan politics to impact American lives. These veterans spilled their blood for our freedom and this is how they get rewarded? Shame on the elected officials and bureaucrats responsible for this mockery.
The Washington Times reported the following. “It’s a cheap way to deal with the situation,” an angry Park Service ranger in Washington says of the harassment. “We’ve been told to make life as difficult for people as we can. It’s disgusting.”
We could not agree more. This type of political grandstanding is disgusting.