I confess yesterday even after writing about it, I was spitting mad over that stupid hit piece about Heisman trophy winner Kyler Murray’s old tweets.
Maybe it’s because I haven’t been well that it bugged the living crap out of me. Who knows?
So yesterday afternoon, I needed a break from our modern-day thin-skinned, easily offended culture.
I have the miniseries “Band of Brothers.” So yesterday I sat down and watched all ten hours of it marathon-style. Sure, it kept me up until midnight to do it. But it was worth it.
If you’ve never seen it, “Band of Brothers” was an HBO miniseries from about eighteen years ago that chronicled the 101st Airborne’s Easy Company during World War Two. It begins with their training in the states then follows from their drop into Normandy on D-Day to their operation in Holland then in Belgium during the Battle of the Bulge. And it concludes with their entrance into Germany and Austria at the end of the war.
It is very well done. Some of it can be hard to watch, to be sure. Seeing a man’s leg blown off by a mortar – even if it is special effects — is not pleasant viewing. But “Band of Brothers” is powerful and moving from beginning to end.
These ordinary men chose to put their lives on hold to join the fight against Germany.
Ordinary men who accomplished the extraordinary.
The thing I like most about “Band of Brothers” is each episode opens with the real life men – now senior citizens – recounting their time in Easy Company during the war.
So not only do you have the dramatized version of these men and their extraordinary lives. You also get their first-hand accounts in their own words.
On average, World War Two vets possessed at most an eighth grade education. These guys weren’t the military elite. They were shopkeepers, farmers, construction workers, cab drivers – ordinary men.
And yet those ordinary men saved the world.
It’s tragic that we are losing the Greatest Generation to the passing of time.
And it is made all the more tragic by the shifts in our culture today.
In a time where people fall to pieces over old tweets, the loss of the Greatest Generation is felt more keenly.
In today’s society, fragile, soft babies are crippled by a hurtful word.
But these ordinary men? Hell, even bullets didn’t stop them.
The men of Easy Company who were injured in combat would go AWOL from the hospital to rejoin their unit.
And in today’s culture, those ordinary men would be called “toxic.”
How pathetic is that?
But I refuse to give up hope on this country because of these tender-bellied losers and crybabies who populate social media and academia.
Because there are still those today who choose to follow in the footsteps of those ordinary men from the Greatest Generation. There are still those today who put their lives on hold to protect this nation in uniform.
Every now and then – especially when I feel as if I’m surrounded by soft, cringing fools — I need to remind myself of what ordinary men can do.
And not just the men of Easy Company. But every man and woman who put on the uniform and keep us safe … and keep us free.
They really are extraordinary.
And we are forever in their debt.
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