Covering Washington politics. From our vantage point. One day a time.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Veterans Day 2012

This Sunday, President Obama and Mrs. Obama will participate in Veteran’s Day activities at Arlington National Cemetery. 

Presidential Obama will lay a traditional wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns followed by a remembrance ceremony at Memorial Amphitheater.

We came across this very common sense and interesting article that may lend some advice as to how to approach a veteran on this important day in our country.

1. It is never OK to ask a veteran if he or she has killed someone or to joke about it. If we have, we can't even talk about it with our spouses, much less a stranger. 

2. When you thank us for our service or pay for our meal, it is really appreciated. We also appreciate packages and notes. 

3. Please don't tell us that wars are a waste of dollars or lives or were fought for oil. What we hear is that, in your opinion, our best friend died for nothing. We know many people disagree with war, but it's better to keep your opinions to yourself. 

4. Many of us now have PTSD. If you see us acting anxious or moving away from crowds, turning our backs to the wall or fidgeting, simple kindness or a little distraction will be appreciated. Talk to us about something interesting and give us some breathing room. 

5. Please remember that 15 percent of those who serve in the military are women, and some have been in combat. It's better to ask, "Are you a veteran?" rather than, "Was your husband a soldier?"

6. As with any person who has a disability, please do not stare at us. We can be sensitive about our scars or injuries and would prefer not to be asked to relive a difficult experience by being quizzed about what happened. Please also understand that war injuries today are very different than in the past and are often not visible. It is not OK to tell someone they "don't look disabled" or appear to need help.

The advice was offered by servicewoman Amanda C.


President Obama at Arlington National Cemetary on Sunday, November 11, 2012.

President Obama lays wreath at tomb of unknown soldiers.

More Veterans' Day Articles
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