This year we commemorate the 100th anniversary of the beginning of WWI -- or the Great War -- in Europe. In the midst of this commemoration, we will do well to remember the remarkable Christmas Truce of 1914.
In truth, of course, no one deserves first-class treatment more than the men and women, like Paula, who have given so much to our country. And they certainly shouldn't have to wait until they're dead - or even longer than that - to be treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.
Last week we saw a perfect example of how screwed up priorities have gotten in Congress. When the financial sector demanded a provision weakening regulations on risky derivative trading, Congress obliged. When veterans asked for $22 million over five years for a suicide prevention program, Sen. Coburn blocked the entire bill.
There's something unique about American Sniper. If this were just another modern war movie, Chris Kyle might be portrayed as a replica of the hollowed out versions of the soldiers we often see splashed across the big screen.
There is currently legislation in the Senate, known as the Clay Hunt SAV Act named for a Veteran lost to suicide. The cost is minimal, a drop in the bucket compared to the $1.1 trillion spending bill recently passed. But it's currently being held up by one man.
Ask anyone who has been out of work for an extended period of time, and you will surely hear that being unemployed is far more difficult than what their last job actually demanded of them.
As service members, we joined the military to ensure that our distinctive American identity remains robust. That identity includes the iconic landscapes that Americans can enjoy on our public lands, from sea to shining sea.
As veterans return from war, how ready are we for them? Are we doing enough to help with that transition? What more can and should we be doing to streamline assistance to veterans and their families?
As we break bread on Saturday at our Georgetown store, we will welcome the community to taste free samples of our sweet and savory treats. But more importantly, we hope to inspire people to support our veterans however they can.
Here's an example of a success story: We learned of a family of four, two adults and two small children, living in their vehicle and decided to help them.
I have been blessed with this ESP. I gladly concede to this clairvoyant gift so long as my husband remains untouched -- but that is impossible. The demon is sewn to my husband's soul. We can lock him up, but he will never leave us.
As a veteran myself, I am aware of the harsh realities facing veterans today. With VA backlogged and the veteran unemployment rate around 10 percent, to say that being a veteran is tough would be an understatement. We can all make an effort to give back to those who have risked their lives for us.
This story was written and performed by Monty Daniels for the live, personal storytelling series Oral Fixation (An Obsession With True Life Tales) at The McKinney Avenue Contemporary in Dallas, on April 17, 2012.
The more we talk about mental illness the same way we talk about physical illness the faster the perception and stigma will change. Your story, or a loved one who has had a victory over mental illness or addiction can inspire others.
The last thing the U.S. should be doing is sending more DU to the Middle East. It is long past time for the Obama administration to acknowledge that the U.S. has a legal and moral obligation to make reparations to Iraqis and U.S. servicemembers and veterans for the toxic legacy of the Iraq War.
Our military and their families make tremendous sacrifices. And while we may wave a flag during a Veterans Day parade, we must do more to honor their service and support their families.