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Veterans Day is not always easy for our heroes — here’s what to say and do

Source image: https://www.foxnews.com/lifestyle/veterans-day-not-always-easy-heroes-heres-do-say

Most of America’s service members do not seek the spotlight. 

To do so would seem incongruous with their initial motivations for raising their hand, their reasons for sticking out the tough times and their means of transitioning back to civilian life. 

These men and women chose to join the military — not for money or fame, but for ancient virtues like honor, duty and sacrifice. 

NEW YORK JETS PAY TRIBUTE TO AMERICA’S MILITARY, VETERANS WITH ANNUAL SALUTE-TO-SERVICE GAME

They did it because they love serving their country, not because they love receiving attention for it. 

As a result, some veterans can feel uncomfortable with the extra attention they will be receiving on Veterans Day — this Friday, Nov. 11 — especially those who served in Vietnam and Korea and endured horrible treatment once they got home. 

Veterans Day is Friday, Nov. 11 — a day that is often hard for many American vets. One way to honor veterans without pushing them away further or making them feel uncomfortable is to simply thank them for their service — and let them know, "I respect you."

Veterans Day is Friday, Nov. 11 — a day that is often hard for many American vets. One way to honor veterans without pushing them away further or making them feel uncomfortable is to simply thank them for their service — and let them know, “I respect you.”
(Credit: Ray Ferrara)

So, what is a grateful American to do? 

How do Americans show their appreciation for a past that is often undiscussed? 

How do Americans thank the ones they love without pushing the veterans away further?

MARINE VETERAN, A DOUBLE AMPUTEE, STRESSES SERVICE TO COUNTRY IN A DIFFERENT WAY

One idea is to send their veterans this note from a woman in Florida — or some version of it. Or perhaps at least read it to gain a new understanding of America’s veterans and how to honor them.

Here it is.

‘I see you, I respect you, I value your service’

I see you. I respect you. I value your service. 

I want to honor you this Veterans Day — but maybe this day is not your favorite.

Men sit outside the Raymond G. Murphy VA Medical Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in July 2014. 

Men sit outside the Raymond G. Murphy VA Medical Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in July 2014. 
(AP)

While children wave flags and parade goers call out, “Thank you for your service,” you might prefer to stay inside and treat it just like any other day. 

Though it’s not Memorial Day — the day we remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice while serving America — it’s still a day that can bring back a lot of memories you may not want to remember. 

Lots of veterans prefer not to be highlighted. 

My own veteran dad preferred to stay out of the spotlight. 

To speak personally for a moment, my own father served in the Army Special Forces as a Green Beret in Vietnam — and became 100% disabled as a result. 

For many reasons, my veteran dad preferred to stay out of the spotlight. 

You might feel this way, too. 

ON VETERANS DAY, THIS VIETNAM VET WANTS OTHER TO KNOW: ‘YOU ARE NOT ALONE’

You didn’t serve to be recognized; you served to serve. 

In the course of fulfilling your duty, you may have — like my father — endured great trauma, and so you have conflicting emotions surrounding your time in the military.

Like him, you may have earned medals that you kept hidden for decades because they remind you of things you’d rather forget. (My dad only chose to share them with me when my husband joined the Navy.

Vietnam veteran Paul Troop honors his fallen comrades while at the World War II Memorial on Veterans Day in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 11, 2013.

Vietnam veteran Paul Troop honors his fallen comrades while at the World War II Memorial on Veterans Day in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 11, 2013.
(Reuters)

Or maybe you feel like you didn’t do “enough,” and so you don’t deserve to be photographed or have your name printed in a bulletin. 

You are not alone.

A few years ago, before my dad passed away, my town held an event to honor Vietnam veterans on the 50th anniversary of the war. 

I now go to veteran gatherings as his proud (admittedly self-appointed) representative.

I asked my dad if he wanted to go together. He didn’t. 

He avoided crowds (because of war experiences) and he remembered how unfairly he was treated in uniform when he came home — he was spat at, verbally degraded and judged. 

"The tiniest ripple you start this Veterans Day could create a wave that informs, changes and blesses others," says the daughter of an American veteran.

“The tiniest ripple you start this Veterans Day could create a wave that informs, changes and blesses others,” says the daughter of an American veteran.
(iStock)

In an effort to honor him, I now go to veteran gatherings as his proud (admittedly self-appointed) representative. 

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I stand in his place — and I create a place for the children of veterans who also have a stake in this day. 

So much of their parents’ service is a part of their story, whether they realize it or not.

Surprisingly, this became a contagious act for me. It led to my participating in three Honor Flight missions — and mobilizing my community to raise funds and volunteer to take a plane full of WWII, Korea and Vietnam veterans to Washington, D.C., for a day to reflect and see their memorials. 

Friends, family and supporters hold an Honor Flight banner to welcome veterans. 

Friends, family and supporters hold an Honor Flight banner to welcome veterans. 
(Honor Flight Chicago)

The tiniest ripple you start this Veterans Day could create a wave that informs, changes and blesses others.

Don’t think about it as doing it for you — I know the humble soldier in you wouldn’t.

Instead, do it for the man with whom you served; stand in his place. 

Let’s give kids ancestors — of bloodline or neighborly relation — on whom they can look backward and learn and then look forward and emulate.

Do it for your children and grandchildren who love you and want to know you. 

Give them a role to play in a script still being written. Your life, past and present, is inextricably linked with theirs. 

Do it for the kids growing up in your neighborhood. They need to know that the man walking his dog each morning, the one raking leaves in his yard, the one washing his car on Saturdays chose to serve this country — with its glories as well as its imperfections — because those veterans (you) were faithful to its ideals, not the political zeitgeist. 

A Vietnam veteran holds a U.S. flag at a Veterans Day memorial in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in Nov. 2010, back-dropped by a deep blue sky.

A Vietnam veteran holds a U.S. flag at a Veterans Day memorial in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in Nov. 2010, back-dropped by a deep blue sky.
(iStock)

If kids are to grow up with a sense of legacy, the adults in their lives must remember the quote from Edmund Burke: “People will not look forward to posterity who never look backward to their ancestors.” 

Let’s give kids ancestors — of bloodline or neighborly relation — on whom they can look backward and learn and then look forward and emulate.

How might neighborhoods, communities and country be better if citizens (especially the little ones growing up) knew the stories of those who embody the idea of thinking beyond themselves? 

If all of that still doesn’t fit for this Veterans Day, that is OK.

You could consider choosing your own ambassador.

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Give someone you trust a word or two to share while they engage with others on November 11 and ask them to report back on the good they experience as a result. 

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You could also write a letter and tuck it away for another day that seems better to share.

And if even that seems like too much, remember this: Heaven hears the silent whispers of the heart just as clear as the loudest trumpet.

Source: https://www.foxnews.com/lifestyle/veterans-day-not-always-easy-heroes-heres-do-say

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Groundhog Day quiz! How well do you know the facts about this unique day?

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10 facts about Black History Month that are well worth knowing during observances in February

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Every February, the nation celebrates Black History Month by honoring the contributions African Americans have made throughout history, while also recognizing that the fight for racial justice continues.

Previously, the theme for Black History Month was Black Health and Wellness, as outlined by the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), which is headquartered in Washington, D.C. This year, the association has announced the month’s theme is “Black resistance” with a planned virtual festival hosted by the association throughout February. 

“African Americans have resisted historic and ongoing oppression, in all forms, especially the racial terrorism of lynching, racial pogroms and police killings since our arrival upon these shores,” said the ASALH in a statement. 

BLACK HISTORY IS AMERICAN HISTORY

“These efforts have been to advocate for a dignified self-determined life in a just democratic society in the United States and beyond the United States political jurisdiction,” added the association. 

Jesse Jackson and others pose with copies of "Paul Robeson, the Great Forerunner" by the editors of Freedomways, 1980.

Jesse Jackson and others pose with copies of “Paul Robeson, the Great Forerunner” by the editors of Freedomways, 1980.
(Afro American Newspapers/Gado/Getty Images)

Scores of events across the country – in cities, communities, college campuses and more – are scheduled for this month.

10 key facts about Black History Month

1. The current population of Black and African Americans is 46.9 million, the U.S. Census Bureau reports. Also, 89.4% of African Americans age 25 and older had a high school diploma or higher in 2020, as Fox10 Phoenix reported.

2. A founder of ASALH, Carter G. Woodson, first had the idea of celebrating Black history. Woodson was born in 1875 to newly freed Virginia slaves. He later earned a Ph.D. in history from Harvard University. He worried that Black children were not being taught about their ancestors’ achievements in American schools in the early 1900s, as Fox 10 noted.

3. By the late 1960s, Negro History Week – the precursor for this month’s celebrations and events – changed into what is now known as Black History Month. In February 1969, a group of Black activist students and teachers at Kent State conducted the first celebration of Black History Month. Within a decade, Black social and cultural institutions throughout the country were celebrating the month, and by 1976, President Gerald Ford officially recognized it. 

4. The month of February was picked for Black History Month because it contained the birthdays of President Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. Lincoln was born on Feb. 12, and Douglass, a former slave who did not know his precise birthday, celebrated his date of birth on Feb. 14, Fox 10 also noted.

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5. ASALH has celebrated Negro History Week and Black History Month for 96 years. Woodson, along with the association, announced in 1926 that the second week of February would commemorate the achievements of Black Americans. Initially, prominent Black leaders and newspapers supported the idea, and some education centers along the East Coast observed the monthly celebration. 

6. Fifty years after the first celebrations, President Gerald R. Ford officially recognized Black History Month at the country’s 1976 bicentennial. Ford called on Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history,” as History.com noted.

WORDS MY UNCLE, MARTIN LUTHER KING JR., WOULD SHARE IN OUR TROUBLED TIMES

7. Forty years after Ford’s recognition of Black History Month, President Barack Obama delivered this message, in part, from the White House: “Black History Month shouldn’t be treated as though it is somehow separate from our collective American history or somehow just boiled down to a compilation of greatest hits from the March on Washington or from some of our sports heroes… It’s about the lived, shared experience of all African Americans.”

Former President Barack Obama 

Former President Barack Obama 
(Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)

8. Canada also commemorates Black History Month in February. Although Black Canadians are approximately 3.5% of the country’s total population, community leaders and activists still celebrate the historical achievements of the Black community. Canadian politicians Jean Augustine and Donald Oliver were instrumental in getting Black History Month officially recognized in the country by 2008. 

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9. At the time of Negro History Week’s launch in 1926, Woodson believed the teaching of Black history was key to the physical and intellectual survival of the race: “If a race has no history, it has no worthwhile tradition, it becomes a negligible factor in the thought of the world, and it stands in danger of being exterminated,” he said in part, as the Journal of Negro History reported.

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10. The 2023 theme for Black History Month is resistance; past themes have included Black health and wellness, family, migration and Black women in American culture and history, among others.

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Reddit user asks her adult daughter to pay half the monthly rent and utilities — family drama ensues

A Reddit user sought advice from others on whether it was OK or not for her to ask her adult daughter to split the rent with her.

Reddit user “throwaway_dating224” posted on the “Am I the A*****e” (AITA) subreddit on Jan. 30 asking if she was in the wrong for wanting her live-in 25-year-old daughter to pay part of the house rent payment.

The user said her daughter moved into her home in 2019 while she was attending college. 

REDDIT USERS SIDE WITH FATHER OF THE BRIDE WHO WAS SNUBBED BY ‘BRIDEZILLA’ DAUGHTER WHEN HE DIDN’T EAT CAKE 

It’s unclear from the post whether the daughter had moved out, then moved back in; but the daughter has since graduated from college and gotten a paying job, although not enough to move out on her own. 

“I have asked her to split the cost of rent and utilities in half with me … and [she] doesn’t consider it fair,” the user wrote. 

The Reddit user said her daughter (not pictured) does not want to pay rent to her mom for her share of the home — claiming she's either saving for her own extended education or a down payment on a house. 

The Reddit user said her daughter (not pictured) does not want to pay rent to her mom for her share of the home — claiming she’s either saving for her own extended education or a down payment on a house. 
(iStock)

The poster said her daughter does not want to live with her and has told her that she’s saving money for continued education or a down payment on a house. 

The mother and daughter live in an area with a high cost of living, the Redditor said — but their rent is below average for the area. 

“Why are you too tired to move your stuff but not too tired to cash your daughter’s checks?”

Additionally, the mother said her daughter refuses to invite guests to the house, as she is “embarrassed at the state of the house,” repeatedly asking her mother to get rid of items in the home to make space for more of her things. 

REDDIT USER SAYS HE CONTACTED HIS WIFE’S BOSS ABOUT HER LONG WORK HOURS, PUTTING HIM IN THE ‘DOGHOUSE’

The mother claims she tends to be tired after work and finds it hard to clean up after herself once she’s back home.

The daughter (not pictured) claims her mother does not pick up around the house and that there's no room for all of her things, the Redditor wrote in her Jan. 30 post detailing a family standoff. 

The daughter (not pictured) claims her mother does not pick up around the house and that there’s no room for all of her things, the Redditor wrote in her Jan. 30 post detailing a family standoff. 
(iStock)

The Redditor ultimately wanted to know if it’s OK to ask her daughter to split the rent costs 50-50. 

An expert weighs in

This scenario is an example of a classic power struggle between a child and a parent, California-based parenting expert Stef Tousignant told Fox News Digital.

As a parent, there are three choices for how to approach this situation, Tousignant, a parenting expert for Parentdifferently.com, said. 

“Use your power to force or coerce, give in and let your child dictate the complete outcome — or use love, empathy and patience to come up with a solution with your child,” she also said. 

ANNOYING PEOPLE SAY THESE 75 THINGS, ACCORDING TO REDDIT USERS

The daughter in this situation is aware of the consequences of her actions as well as the concept of personal boundaries, said Tousignant, who recommended that the mother and daughter have a civil conversation. 

“Why should she pay half when the home is filled with all [of] your things?”

“The mother needs to come to the table with compassion for her daughter but boundaries for herself — and the daughter needs to come to the table with respect for her mother and accountability for her actions,” the expert recommended. 

The mother and daughter (not pictured) each need to "come to the table" with key points to make in a conversation, said California-based parenting expert Stef Tousignant.

The mother and daughter (not pictured) each need to “come to the table” with key points to make in a conversation, said California-based parenting expert Stef Tousignant.
(iStock)

Reddit users offered varying opinions on the hot topic. 

“Why should she pay half when the home is filled with all [of] your things?” one commenter wrote, addressing the mother. 

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Another user commented to the mom, “Why are you too tired to move your stuff but not too tired to cash your daughter’s checks?”

On the other hand, some users agree that the daughter should be pitching in and helping with expenses — but maybe not at a 50-50 split.

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“Charging her rent? Fine, no problem there,” one Reddit user responded. 

“But if she doesn’t have … use of half the space in the home yet, then remedy that before you charge her or adjust the rent [percentage] accordingly,” the same user added.

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