Voice of veterans silent for too long
North Dakota has been blessed by God with an abundance of natural resources. Oil, gas, wind, coal and a plethora of agricultural products that can be used for food, fiber and fuel, have made our state the envy of all.
There is another resource that North Dakota has in abundance. This resource offers unlimited potential benefits to our state and nation. North Dakota has the highest number of veterans, per capita, of any state. They run the gamut from our heroic World War II heroes, Korean, Vietnam, Desert Storm, and the newest veterans from Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosovo and other duty stations around the world.
America’s “Greatest Generation” went through the Great Depression, fought the greatest war in history, and returned home to build the greatest, most prosperous, fairest and most powerful nation in history. They did it one community at a time. They joined veterans’ organizations, got active in their schools, churches, service organizations and in the political life of their communities. America’s veterans led the way. They left us a magnificent nation, proud and strong.
Today, we are embroiled in wars that never seem to end, an economic crisis that seems unsolvable and a feeling that perhaps we have lost our way. North Dakota and American veterans have performed bravely, skillfully and intelligently while defending the frontiers of freedom, even while Washington leaders act like spoiled school kids at recess.
Now is the time for a new “Greatest Generation” to step forward. We need this untapped resource badly. I urge all veterans to get involved. Join your veterans’ groups, school groups, churches and civic and political groups. Our state and our nation need your energy, your vigor, your ideas, your never-say-die attitude and your courage. Just as America’s “Greatest Generation” built our nation after World War II, we need our veterans to redeploy, here at home, in a new mission. The strong voice of the veteran has been silent, too long. We need that voice to be heard at all levels of our government, and in our communities, to revive this land we all love so dearly.
Brian P. Kalk, U.S. Marine Corps retired, North Dakota Public Service Commission, Bismarck