Honor and respect

The recently concluded Moving Wall Memorial hosted by the Indian Trail VFW Post 2423 proved to be a sterling event bringing together various portions of the community for one noble cause. Thousands of participants arrived to honor the memory of the wounded and fallen soldiers of the Vietnam War-era who sacrificed so greatly so others could enjoy the freedom of democracy. Those warriors, like generations before and after them, came from all segments of society. They were known to us all. They bore simple names such as father, mother, brother, sister and next door neighbor. They might not have construed themselves as heroes, but they unselfishly gave of themselves for a higher cause. It is to these individuals we owe our greatest admiration and respect.

Unfortunately, attempting to divert attention away from the solemnity and dignity of the event was a disgraceful, self-serving political demonstration led by conspiratorial theorists Arthur Spurr and Jonathan Baer. There, these two right-wing extremists stood across the street from the VFW, and greeted the approaching Moving Wall motorcade with an inverted American flag, signifying dishonor and disrespect. Fortunately, such demonstration was short lived and met with quick rebuke from the VFW Post Commander. The two individuals were verbally reprimanded and refused entry onto VFW property.

As a Vietnam veteran myself, I applaud the actions of the VFW post commander. Yes, we live in a great country where freedom of speech abounds. And, yes, Mr. Spurr and Mr. Baer have the constitutional right to demonstrate and issue bizarre, exaggerated and provocative statements for their self-indulgent pleasures. However, there are times when one should set aside their political agenda, suspend their petty hatreds and biases, and quietly give full honor and respect to those who have sacrificed so selflessly for the good of others. It is these past, present and future heroes that we now salute and offer our heartfelt gratitude and respect.

Carlton Aldrich
Indian Trail

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2 Responses

  1. Mr. Aldrich has made some interesting comments. Everyone has the right to protest, but only when the times that are appropriate? At any given time someone will be offended with what another may disagree with. So, when will the correct time be to show your displeasure? If you are for or against abortion, who is offended if you choose to protest for one side or the other of the issue? The other side of course!

    I have read and heard the same argument from the VFW Post 2423 Vice Commander Brian Boze and now Mr. Aldrich. Yes, everyone has the right to express themselves, which is why men and women gave their lives for this country to have that right. Yet, when you do what happens? Not here, not now! Where and when then? If a protest were to took place during a Christmas parade what would be the result? What about at Thanksgiving? 4th of July? Why will there be protesters at the upcoming Democratic and Republican National Conventions? If it were two different residents protesting other than Mr. Spurr and Mr. Baer. Two unknown residents? Would the result be the same?

    Do I agree with what they did was appropriate? NO! Do I agree they both have the right to protest? YES! If the citizens of the United States are told they have the freedom to express their views, but only if everyone else agrees with them. Is that a democracy? Every man and woman who gave their lives for the United States was for what reason? Also, to correct Mr. Aldrich, Mr. Baer was never reprimanded by Mr. Boze!

  2. I apologize for addressing Mr. Boze as a Vice Commander when he is now the Commander of Post 2423 Indian Trail