Tuesday, August 02, 2005

A little personal history about today

August 2, 1990...

I was sitting at home watching CNN when I got news of Iraq's invasion of Kuwait. With summer vacation came a little more extra time off, and a little more time watching cable and reading the news. I may not have been a Bush the Elder policy wonk at the time, but I remember telling my Dad that we'd be going to war in a few months to pull Kuwait's backside out of the fire, not to mention keeping Saddam Hussein away from a large portion of the world's oil supply. Dad wasn't so sure. It was an interesting way to preface my senior year in high school. I think maybe two, three guys at my school were running around shrieking about the draft, the rest of us saying that we'd enlist before a draft occurred, and besides, the shooting part of the war will end before we graduate. We were right, so we go on with our lives as if nothing happened. Then I start meeting guys who served in Desert Shield and Desert Storm while in college, and realize something was wrong. I wasn't doing anything to defend this country.

August 2, 1992...

After a year in college, I decide to join the Air Force. I go to Lackland AFB later that year and then to Lowry AFB to learn to fix one of the workhorse aircraft of the war, the F-111. My term takes me through Europe and the Middle East repairing these beautiful warbirds. Even after going through it all, I still don't question my desire to serve. I just wonder if should have joined right out of high school instead of go to college for a year.

August 2, 2005...

I look back through the past 15 years and wonder if it was Desert Storm or 9/11 that affected me more. On this day, I see which one it was. As horrific as 9/11 was, as hard as it is for me to remember that day without anger, it's what happened 15 years ago today that made me realize the need to grow up and to take up my share of the nation's burdens. That was the day when I decided to be more serious, to act like the adult I was going to be very soon.

It doesn't mean I gave up my sense of humor, though...

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