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Why Don’t Veterans Get The Day Off?

November 14, 2018
By Anesa McGregor , Emmetsburg News

Veteran's Day - many today do not understand the origin of Veteran's Day.

What started out as a day commemorating the month, day and time of the end of the 'war to end all wars' was over, World War I. It was the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, originally Armistice Day until Congress changed it to Veteran's Day.

Truly, I feel that a person can't understand any other war unless you can grasp what the reasons were behind the start and finish. Unless you understand Armistice Day how can a person understand the question 'Why don't Veterans get the day off?'

Honoring the men and women who served during World War I with a day just for them made sense back then. As the years passed and more and more wars came and went, it also made sense to honor all military on the same day; hence part of the reason for the change to Veterans Day.

One thing that puzzles me, however, why is Veteran's Day a day off for people who are not vets?

Think about it, Veteran's Day is one of those holidays that a lot of American workers don't get, literally or figuratively. But has anyone taken a serious look at why all veterans don't get the day off.

The following are considered the top three reasons:

1. Veterans don't get the day off because their employers won't let them. Banks are closed, as are many government offices and services. But for a lot of people, it is just another day; unless they work retail, in which case it is a very busy day, so they don't get it off either.

2. A lot of people don't get Veteran's Day off because they don't get veterans. They say war is hell and the less said (or thought about it), the better. With the end of the draft (for those of you who remember what the draft was), most American males didn't have to do military service and chose not to. In today's Congress--which was once filled with World War II, Korean and Vietnam war veterans--, the number of veterans could probably caucus in a large telephone booth (remember those).

3. And while Iraq and Afghanistan are very much alive, hot wars, they are also remote to many people. There are many who don't know anyone in those danger zones or maybe even any one in the military.

Now here we are today. Yes, the federal offices and programs had yesterday off in honor of Veteran;s Day. I would really like to know just how many of those people are vets or are currently invested in the military such as the reserves. It's great that you had a day off but is it really deserved.

In my eyes, the ones who really deserve it are left out. Veterans who have Veterans Day off are a minority not the majority.

We thank those who have given up so much in service of our country with short programs that may last an hour and then it's on with everyday life.

Employers need to consider giving every veteran who is working the day off. Show them that what they have done and our doing in the name of freedom and liberty means something more than just a quick 'Thank you.'

So even though Veteran's Day is over, be sure to thank a veteran every day of the year. Being in the military is not a nine-to-five job. It is 24-7-365 until the person is discharged.

Yes, those who are currently serving have chosen to give a part of their lives in service of this great county. They fight for the freedoms our founding fathers wanted for generations to come. But they also fight so that others may enjoy the freedom and liberty to pursue a life that they currently can only dream of.

The men and women and their families are the true heros of yesterday, today and tomorrow.

So, I challenge all employers to give any veteran working for them Veteran's Day off next year. Show them what they have done is appreciated and not forgotten.



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