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J. KARL MILLER: Memorial Day Weekend Celebration proves Columbia still No. 1 for veterans

Wednesday, May 16, 2012 | 6:00 a.m. CDT

Regularly shown among the top 100, Columbia has been ranked as high as No. 2 on Money magazine's annual best places to live in the United States. Often lauded for its business atmosphere, our city is also described as fun and sophisticated as well. But we do not need Money magazine to tell us that.

However, there is one area in which Columbia has ranked No. 1 for upward of two decades — the annual Memorial Day Weekend Celebration organized and presented by the Salute to Veterans Corp. The Memorial Day weekend is the culmination of a six-day celebration "to honor and remember those who served and those currently serving."

This celebration is unique: It is all volunteer (3,000-plus); it has but one purpose — to honor and remember veterans for their sacrifice; and it includes an all-military air show and parade free to the public (no admission or parking fees). It doesn't get any better than this.

Such is the organization, popularity and continued growth of this celebration that this year marks its 24th anniversary. It did not happen by accident — it is the brainchild of Mary McCleary Posner, who breathed life into the Memorial Day celebration and, like the pied piper, picked up the entourage of loyal supporters along the way.

Following a successful career of managing corporate clients in New York, Mary returned to Columbia in 1987. As she tells it, she asked her mother how Memorial Day was celebrated here, and the response was something to the effect of "a group of old veterans gather at the courthouse" and not much more.

To Mary, that was patently unsatisfactory, for she believed the brave veterans of our nation's wars deserved recognition for their service. Being Mary, she did not half step but went to "General Quarters" and, along with her husband, Alan, formed the Salute to Veterans Corp. In 1989, they funded the first parade along with the aircraft and the fuel.

Since that small beginning, the Salute to Veterans Air Show and Parade has enjoyed remarkable spectator appeal to grow to its present six-day celebration. Featuring demonstrations by both modern and vintage aircraft, U.S. and Canadian parachute teams, static displays of aircraft and military equipment, appearances by distinguished honored guests and a Memorial Day Parade of up to 150 units, the celebration is enjoyed by thousands.

The honored guests have included a who's who of American heroes: Medal of Honor recipients such as Gen. Ray Davis, U.S. Marine Corps; former prisoners of war; Pearl Harbor survivors; Col. Travis Hoover, who piloted the second aircraft on the Doolittle raid on Japan in 1942; Tung-Sheng Liu, the Chinese national who led Hoover and his crew to safety; Col. Charles McGee and the Tuskegee pilots and crews; and members of the Women Airforce Service Pilots, to name just a few.

The week — featuring a living history program, visits to local schools, a Friday private air show for veterans in old soldiers' homes and VA hospitals, the two-day air show and Monday parade — will culminate with the courthouse ceremony honoring those who are no longer with us.

As a 16-year member of Mary's 3,000-plus volunteers (to serve with Mary Posner is a way of life — it is virtually impossible to say no as she can sell Popsicles to Eskimos), I highly recommend attending the air show and the parade as a minimum. The blend of Armed Forces veterans with those now serving and soon to serve is an inspiring mixture of leadership and developing leaders.

While the Salute to Veterans Celebration has flourished with continuous growth, thanks to the volunteers' labor of love and community support, it has not always been a bed of roses. There exists in Columbia a faction that either does not understand the "honor and remember" sentiment earned by veterans and those now serving or simply chooses not to do so.

Instead, this group attempts to paint the Salute to Veterans Celebration as merely an effort to glorify war, promote the military-industrial complex and entice the young and impressionable to enlist in the Armed Forces. Toward accomplishing their aims, the group's members have resorted to protests, lawsuits, attempted disruptions of events and a gauntlet of naysayers armed with placards and petitions at the entrance — all with the goal of shutting down the celebration.

Fortunately, the celebration's supporters have outvoted the protesters with increased attendance and by largely ignoring the nonsense and nuisance of the protest. After all, it is quite a stretch to believe a theme to "Honor and Remember" glorifies war. Those who have experienced combat are far more peace loving than those who align themselves against the veterans who stood in harm's way to guarantee their right to protest.

Finally, being involved with the Salute to Veterans Celebration has been a highlight of my retirement years. Mary Posner's vision — coupled with the enthusiasm of the volunteers and of the surrounding community in honoring the memory of those who have gone before as well as the current and future veterans — is inspiring. Respect is contagious.

To those who, for whatever reason, think this celebration is distasteful, I remind you: Be glad these aircraft and other weapons are ours. Without the indomitable service of the veterans and those now serving, it could represent the war machinery of a conquering nation.

J. Karl Miller retired as a colonel in the Marine Corps. He is a Columbia resident and can be reached via email at JKarlUSMC@aol.com. Questions? Contact Elizabeth Conner.


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Comments

Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 9:54 a.m.

Every week you prove that you are literally incapable of considering any ideas that do not align with your warped view of reality, which is rooted in the 1950s and (white) patriarchy.

"this group attempts to paint the Salute to Veterans Celebration as merely an effort to glorify war, promote the military-industrial complex and entice the young and impressionable to enlist in the Armed Forces"

This celebration represents jingoism at best and highlights public obliviousness to the more sinister machinations of our government. Misguided and financially insecure youth continue to head out to the meat grinder and you want to look at neat airplanes and feel good about 'stuff'. The military complex is promoted. The young and impressionable are enticed.

(Report Comment)
Cheyenne Greene May 16, 2012 | 10:09 a.m.

Louis, if it were up to you we'd be speaking German but your words would not flow so freely.
Shows like this are meant to honor our Veterans and to introduce people to the concept of honor and glory.
You should take time out from promoting world-peace to honor those who allow you that platform.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 10:34 a.m.

You do realize that so-called 'conservatives' bring up the second World War EVERY time they are in a debate about militarism/overt patriotism. It's a cheap-shot because we all know that something had to be done to stop the 'Final Solution' and the Japanese atrocities in the East. I feel a certain amount of respect for those who were drafted into the military. But this is no longer the case, and signing your life away to get the GI bill, health-care, housing for your entire family, etc does not make one a hero by virtue of being fired at. That's why they (the armed forces) pay all of that money, because one has agreed to being fired upon.

You bring up a good point though--World War II was the last legitimate large scale military engagement that the U.S. has been involved in. We ought to be collectively outraged by all of those that have followed; not to mention the countless coups/entanglements we've been involved in globally (Chile, Nicaragua, Honduras, et al).

But as long as the public continues to watch American Idol, cheer at the big planes, and grow ever more obese, I can only wonder if the Revolution against the British Crown was even worth the trouble...

(Report Comment)
Greg Allen May 16, 2012 | 11:26 a.m.

This is one that I'm divided on. On the one hand, to dishonor those who have voluntarily put their lives on the line is patently silly. They have shown a willingness to protect that is absolutely necessary for our nation. To not recognize that is keeping blinders on. On the other hand, the military industrial complex is a reality, the reasons for war have become dubious and, arguably, follow the ultimately capitalistic mission of profit, and we see more and more clearly that war isn't good for any of the participants', casaulties', and cultures' mental health.

Nothing wrong with defense. But offensive war is offensive.

An aspect that I don't see mentioned much is that the military, often in response to momentary need, has speeded up the development of aircraft. In the few short years of WWII we went from biplanes to jet planes. Commercial aviation has benefitted from this, and I don't think we realize how much our daily air travel owes much to military R&D. Even though I'm very cautious about how war is conducted anymore, I still enjoy the air show because of an apsect of the history of flight presented right before us.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 12:34 p.m.

Voluntary participation in a war of aggression isn't inherently honorable. Some go into these wars with good, albeit misguided, intentions. Misguided voluntarism is not my idea of advancing society. Obviously no one hates our troops -- these days, everyone has a friend or family member who has served in one of our two failed invasions. Many of those same troops come back with their minds changed, the hard way. Until we begin to think of things outside of the 20th Century Bubble, humanity will make zero progress.

The projected cost of the F-35 program is 1 trillion over the next 50 years. I'd rather see that kind of money go into healing the sick and feeding the hungry, rather than on a war-plane, regardless of potential future benefits to commercial aviation.

(Report Comment)
Greg Allen May 16, 2012 | 1:04 p.m.

Louis: yes, we come upon the problem that war is by the leaders and for the leaders. While it would be nice to be able to not have the horrors that war brings, rather than just chanting, "War: bad", what is the alternative? What is the solution? Is peace the absence of conflict, or properly managing conflict? We have had peacenicks throughout human history, some as successful as Ghandi, but how do we get their ideas to stick? How do we keep leaders from taking us into war? I've thought about this for decades. The spectre of nuclear holocaust makes it urgent. How do you think we can get there?

(Report Comment)
hank ottinger May 16, 2012 | 2:21 p.m.

My personal preference, and one more in accord with "Memorial" Day would be for a small cadre of veterans in full dress uniforms marching slowly to a single muffled drum.

(Report Comment)
Ellis Smith May 16, 2012 | 3:25 p.m.

While it might be argued that we haven't been engaged in a "righteous" war since World War II and the Korean War, we need to be careful to separate those who actually fought in those more recent wars from those who made, and continue to make, military policy.

Our troops don't vote on whether they put their lives in danger.

I served voluntarily in our armed forces but was never in combat; I have the greatest respect for those who were, regardless of the war involved. So should you.

PS: To Cheyenne Greene, only those living East of Denver, Colorado would now be speaking German; those living west of Denver would be speaking Japanese.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 4:13 p.m.

Clearly, I'm not chanting "war bad". I'm chanting "pointless, trillion dollar quasi-wars bad" / "perpetual pseudo-war bad". We have gained nothing for our people and lost much credibility abroad by fighting these wars. The answer, at least where terrorism is concerned, is to have powerful clandestine operations world-wide, designed to strike decisive blows on a small scale. See the Bin Laden death for a good example.

We (the public) keep leaders from taking us into these drawn-out, costly wars by learning lessons from history, something we seem to have much trouble doing. Much like many other lessons learned in US history, these lessons are repeatedly forgotten by a gullible public. If we actually held our representatives accountable and were informed, campaign ads and platitudes would be meaningless -- we would know the facts.

Very few people are so dense as to suggest that a utopian manifestation of peace will exist, on a global scale, at any time in mankind's foreseeable future. So I would say, yes, 'functional peace' entails properly managing conflict. Our heavy handed tactics are laughable and history will prove this to be so.

The function of our military does not include spreading democracy (the U.S.A. is not even a democracy) or preventing the spread of communism. How many cycles of 'lesson learned' and 'lesson forgotten' will we have to go through as a society? This is similar to pressing your hand on the stove-top and forgetting that it hurt.

Tales of the glory of these failed conflicts told to children are the seeds of gullibility. These seeds grow to become votes for politicians who take us to again relearn the lessons we've already learned. Perhaps what people really need to see is what the remains of the innocent victims of war look like, what the maimed look like.

By the way, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfield, et al, were tried and convicted in absentia for war-crimes by a Malaysian court.

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 16, 2012 | 4:37 p.m.

Is Senator Patrick Leahy still trying to get charges together on Bush and Cheney? That is all he has done since becoming chair of the Judiciary Committee.

Your earlier comments were a waste and your latest attempts at intellectualism ain't working either.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 4:47 p.m.

Frank -- good to know that my 'attempts at intellectualism ain't working'. You've been most insightful. I've noticed that you often rely on one-liners and regurgitated banalities, rather than ever actually doing any critical thinking or saying anything intelligent.

Try harder.

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 16, 2012 | 5:55 p.m.

Louis - Are you implying that I'm in the same boat with you?

OMG!

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 6:08 p.m.

Frank -- You're boring, let's never talk to one another.

(Report Comment)
Jonathan Hopfenblatt May 16, 2012 | 6:22 p.m.

I've been telling him the same for a while now, Louis. I'm glad someone else noticed.

"OMG MARXIST LEFTIST COMMUNIST SOCIALIST LIBERAL PROGRESSIVE OMG"

That about sums up his posts.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 6:55 p.m.

I'm going to try to avoid being cynical by choosing to think that Frank is a very successful troll, rather than a complete dolt.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 6:58 p.m.

Jonathan -- you forgot to include "mainstream media" and "gay agenda".

(Report Comment)
Don Milsop May 16, 2012 | 9:18 p.m.

LCpl Edwin L. "Tim" Crafts, Khe Sanh, February, 1968

"For those that will fight for it...FREEDOM ...has a flavor the protected shall never know."

(Report Comment)
Don Milsop May 16, 2012 | 9:24 p.m.

Ellis, I never bothered to register for the draft. I figured after I turned 18 they could track me down wherever I was stationed if they wanted to.

But those like Louis who sneer at the military, they only do so in a pathetic attempt to hid the fact that those who have served will always be looked up in society as better than they, and they know in the pit of their stomach they would never have had the courage for the fortitude to endure what others did on their behalf.

While we do disdain the likes of Louis, we know he is a very small minority. We are humbled to be honored by those who did serve before us, those who served with us, those who serve today, and those to serve in the future. We are grateful for families that supported us, and the citizens who appreciated us.

When you have kept in touch with the families of those you served with and fell in combat, only then can you truly appreciate the honor it was to serve your nation.

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 16, 2012 | 9:29 p.m.

Oh my! now remember,shouldn't include God in these conversations. I had thought of the comparison between "Louie and Jona" and here they are, for the world to see.

Unfortunately, the only notable thing they have added is the fact that while each wishes to turn our country away from capitalism and into a U.N. favored system, "MARXIST LEFTIST COMMUNIST SOCIALIST LIBERAL PROGRESSIVE", are words they do not want to hear.

Sorry, fellows. If one prefers I not address him, OK. Do not, however, expect me to stop writing *about* you.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 16, 2012 | 10:34 p.m.

Right, this is something you need to work on -- our government has nothing to do with 'god' (which one?) or anything religious whatsoever, other than ensuring that you can peaceably worship the god of your choice with whomever you please, so long as you aren't harming anyone. We don't mind the words per se, we simply find your vehement idiocy rather illogical.

From the "Treaty of Peace and Friendship between the United States of America and the Bey and Subjects of Tripoli of Barbary" - signed by John Adams after unanimous ratification by the Senate... "Art. 11. As the ***Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion***,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen [Muslims],—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan [Muslim] nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries."

(Report Comment)
Don Milsop May 17, 2012 | 4:57 a.m.

Louis, the only diety mentioned in the Constitution is Jesus Christ. Nobody else.

(Report Comment)
Ellis Smith May 17, 2012 | 5:22 a.m.

@ Don Milsop:

The name of a person posting is of far less interest to me than the content of the post. (I don't consider haikus to be posts.) None of us posting here, regardless of their inflated or deflated opinion of themselves, is really that important.

As for the decades of the 1940s (1946-1950) and 1950s, there were pluses and minuses just like other decades; however, I believe there were differences in attitudes from those today.

For example, Korea was NOT a popular war (it was referred to derisively as "Truman's War"), but civilian America made a clear distinction between the war itself and those assigned to fight it*. That was clearly different from the situation with Vietnam.

Those same American civilians showed a keen interest in getting on with domestic matters, rather than sitting around waiting for the government to do it for them (and whining while they sit). Maybe there's a direct relationship: the more already available programs, the more whining.

BTW, during the Korean War it was difficult to evade the draft by going to Canada: Canada had troops fighting in Korea (as did the United Kingdom, France, Australia, Turkey, Colombia, etc.)

*-That situation, versus Vietnam, has been commented upon previously by historians; it is not just my opinion.

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking May 17, 2012 | 8:11 a.m.

Don Milsop wrote:

"Louis, the only diety mentioned in the Constitution is Jesus Christ. Nobody else."

It was mentioned in the context of a date at the end (Year of our Lord) and not with respect to a preferred religion. That was simply the way they wrote dates then. The text of the Constitution is very carefully secular.

DK

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 17, 2012 | 8:38 a.m.

I thot we were no longer speaking, Louis, but you have apparently broken the short silence.

I didn't know intellectuals were this attached to repetition. This has been thoroughly covered time and again, from the words in a treaty, assuring Muslims that the new relationship would never be interrupted for religious reasons, to a letter mentioning some sort of a wall, written by Thomas Jefferson. Both these have been brought to public attention (and pounded there), by Americans United for the Separation of Church and State formed in 1947, and their present head, leftist (word includes, MARXIST LEFTIST COMMUNIST SOCIALIST LIBERAL PROGRESSIVE), former ACLU employee, Barry Lynn. You help prove my contention that today's liberals, either born or educated after 1960, believe that the world began when they were born.

"you can peaceably worship the god of your choice with whomever you please, so long as you aren't harming anyone"

With the reminder that every communist, fascist regime in history has first reduced or destroyed religion in favor of the all important government,here are another few instances concerning "peaceably worship".

http://www.christianadc.org/news-and-art...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrEZi8wz0...

(Report Comment)
Laura Johnston May 17, 2012 | 10:08 a.m.

Folks: Comments on this thread are trending toward personal attacks. Please remember to be civil in your discussion.

Thanks,
Laura Johnston, interactive news editor
ColumbiaMissourian.com

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 17, 2012 | 10:26 a.m.

You don't actually believe in the separation of church and state? Sad and ridiculous.

(Report Comment)
J Karl Miller May 17, 2012 | 11:01 a.m.

Mr Schneebaum obviously overlooked or ignored my "Those who have experienced combat are far more peace loving than those who align themselves against the veterans who stood in harm's way to guarantee their right to protest." I never imagined that an editorial honoring our nation's heroes and those who volunteer seflessly to honor them would instigate so much venom. Mr Schneebaum, perhaps you might consider these three quotes concerning war before you go off the deep end.

"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." George Orwell

War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."
John Stuart Mill (1806 - 1873

A nation that will insist upon drawing a broad line of demarcation between the fighting man and the thinking man is liable to find its fighting done by fools and its thinking done by cowards."
General Sir Wm Butler

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 17, 2012 | 12:44 p.m.

You "obviously overlooked or ignored" everything that I said. I am "pro-violence" -- but only when it serves some legitimate purpose. Your loquacious reply here only highlights the fact that you cannot adapt or think critically, which is why your editorials are so irritating.

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 17, 2012 | 12:44 p.m.

"You don't actually believe in the separation of church and state? Sad and ridiculous."

Sorry Ms. Johnston, but Mr. Schneebaum, imo, has perfectly illustrated the "ridiculous" and I feel need show him his error. I hope it is not considered a personal attack.

He posts "sad and ridiculous", even though I explained who, why and when "separation" became an issue, not because my facts are wrong, but because he must ignore them if he is to continue with his execution of the liberal agenda.

I can also assure him that the ridicule and hate he has shown for Christianity and religion (common place now, among liberals) was unheard of by Anyone before 1960 and the leftists I've named, went to work.

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking May 17, 2012 | 1:12 p.m.

Frank, I know several Christians who are anywhere from somewhat left of center to full blown ultra left progressives. Individuals may ridicule and hate Christianity, but this is true all across the political spectrum. There's no incompatibility between liberal politics and being a Christian.

The Founding Fathers were quite careful to avoid favoring or including particular religions in the Constitution. They know full well from their recent hisory the abuses and injustices perpetrated in the name of an official church. Religion, like energy or climate change, must not be a political football.

DK

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 17, 2012 | 1:59 p.m.

Of course Mark! "Religion, like energy or climate change, must not be a political football."

Problem is, all three, plus patriotism became a political foot ball, after 1060.

Neither did the founding fathers single out one (Christianity) for ridicule and hatred. Quite simply they stated "Congress shall make no *law* respecting an Establishment of religion, or Prohibiting Free Exercise thereof... caps etc., mine, of course.

(Report Comment)
Cheyenne Greene May 17, 2012 | 2:01 p.m.

Louis... back away from the keyboard. If you really are so irritated by these editorials why continue to read them?

(Report Comment)
matt arnall May 17, 2012 | 3:20 p.m.

Yes, great advice. Anything that you don't like you should just ignore. Imagine if all that were disgusted by the actions of some in the 60's just ignored them. That would have really helped the civil rights movement. You really hit the nail on the head, Cheyenne. I too read these articles by Miller due to the fact that he is so far off base and I comment on them because I believe what he thinks is wrong. Ignoring bad things doesn't make them go away. Confronting the ills of society will probably have a better result.
As for this article, I am all for honoring those that have helped to defend this country and all of our freedom. The problem is the back-handed, snide inclusions that Miller can't do without. Stating that liberals hate America and military personel is crazy. Frank would like to see everyone that believe differently than him banished from the county.
So Miller, what do you have to say about the growing number of veterans that believe the job they were made to do was not in the interest of freedom, but in the interest of fossil fuels and the military corporations. Do those people get a pat on the back for their service, or would you have harsh words for them too? You are not in favor of this country, but the people in this country that view things as you do. You are blatently bigotted against those that do not, and I assume this means fellow veterans that hold different values and morals than you.
If your artcile had been to honor those that had served, then you could have done without the vailed swings at people that have different view points, couldn't you?

(Report Comment)
mike mentor May 17, 2012 | 3:34 p.m.

Thank you to those that have served or are serving !!!

Thank You !!!
Thank You !!!
Thank You !!!

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 17, 2012 | 3:47 p.m.

M. Arnall - "Frank would like to see everyone that believe differently than him banished from the county."

Another, absolutely false, accusation. I have stated more than once that we have to live with liberals, but must never again elect them to positions of control in our governments. Others that "believe differently", can stay, as well.

(Report Comment)
Cheyenne Greene May 17, 2012 | 4:05 p.m.

hey Matt, I'm all for constructive criticism but the constant battering by an annoyed reader with anger issues is counterproductive. I like to use confrontation only when it is necessary. Bashing this event and this story is unnecessary.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 17, 2012 | 4:20 p.m.

Bashing the story is necessary. Miller makes it a point to pepper his very base, historically revisionist musings with political jabs.

For the record, one of my best and oldest friends has served in active combat duty in both Iraq and Afghanistan and we openly discuss the pointlessness of these wars.

(Report Comment)
matt arnall May 17, 2012 | 4:55 p.m.

Cheyenne, I don't believe we know enough to say that anyone has anger issues. And I may have missed it but I did not see anyone bashing this event. I think memorial day and its celebration is great. I don't like the story not due to its information about the celebration, but for the un-needed taunting contained within.
So, you have to live with them, but believe they should have no part in our government. Yes, Frank, that is still a problem. Insert another word and tell me if that is acceptable or not. African American, Muslim, Woman, handicapped, gay, etc, etc. Do you see the problem. It is not about just "living with" but accepting. Different is not bad. Not everyone in America is an older white male, and your biggotry is nauseating.

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 17, 2012 | 6:23 p.m.

m. arnall - Try to absorb these few instances of your inaccurate thoughts and posts.

Louis, the "basher" wrote "Bashing the story is necessary". You, however, "did not see anyone bashing this event."

Yours in regard to my post: You saw fit to change my words, "never again elect them to positions of control in our governments." to "but believe they should have no part in our government." Another falsity.

To be able to peacefully live with another (whomever),fulfills the requirement regarding prejudice, discrimination, and "acceptance". Imo, only our liberal progressives envision a human race with no differences that will work continually for the good of the Central Government. I totally accept (the word you want?) every one you named above, plus one you did not. "older white male(s)). Your "biggotry is nauseating"!

(Report Comment)
John Bliss May 17, 2012 | 6:38 p.m.

Louis, Colonel Miller served his country for over 30 yeats, You mention a friend, I doubt if you have ONE!

(Report Comment)
Don Milsop May 17, 2012 | 9:05 p.m.

Separation of church and state simply meant that there would be no official state religion. It did not mean that there would be no religion of any kind in government. We have military chaplains, chapels, cross and Stars of David and other symbols in our government cemeteries. We open congress with prayers. God is used in speeches by many of our presidents in their inaugural addresses and other important speeches. Religious symbols are engraved on federal buildings. Inside the cupola of the Jefferson Memorial is engraved: "I Have Sworn Upon the Altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man."

Need we erase that to satisfy your warped sense of separation of church and state?

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 17, 2012 | 9:11 p.m.

Yes.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 17, 2012 | 9:34 p.m.

Religion, of any kind, should be entirely separate from government, always.

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 17, 2012 | 9:43 p.m.

"For the record, one of my best and oldest friends has served in active combat duty in both Iraq and Afghanistan and we openly discuss the pointlessness of these wars."

Does anyone wonder if Mr. Schneebaum has ever discussed, or even read, the opinion of anyone that has considered the true facts about the attack on our homeland and the resulting war for protection of the American people, that has caused 6 ME nations to discontinue their support of terrorist organizations, to assist in the decimation of those terrorists ability to do the world wide damage they had thought would lead to their control over us all? Do he and his buddy consider the several nations that since have risen up and overthrown their despots after noting the Iraqis with their stained fingers in the air to show that they had VOTED?

Mr. Scheenbaum states "The function of our military does not include spreading democracy (the U.S.A. is not even a democracy) or preventing the spread of communism."

Did his buddy tell him that the best time of most of our troops was showing those truly "downtrodden masses" the benefits of democracy, as our troops have done since our country was born?

The extremely sad part. Only our progressive liberals wiii attempt to deny the truth in these statements.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 17, 2012 | 11:00 p.m.

I think you and Don should get married.

(Report Comment)
Ellis Smith May 18, 2012 | 5:56 a.m.

Technically, the United States of America is NOT a democracy, it's a REPUBLIC. Surely we are all familiar with the Pledge of Allegiance, which clearly says our country is a "republic."

Democracy is obviously something far more "pure" and "desirable," the classic case cited being ancient Greece.

Of course we tend to forget that in this ancient Greek democracy wealthy Greek "democrats" had household servants and other retainers who were acknowledged slaves.

Well, no body's perfect, are they?

(Report Comment)
Ellis Smith May 18, 2012 | 6:17 a.m.

"I think you and Don should get married."

That's legally impossible in Missouri; only in the state of Iowa in this part of the United states is same sex marriage legal.

There's a very famous little church out in in the country near Nashua, Iowa called "The Little Brown Church in the Vale" where tens of thousands of weddings have been performed over the years. (There's even a large florist's shop near the church; it looks really odd sitting out in the middle of nowhere!)

Schedules are tight - especially as we approach June - but maybe we could fit you guys in.

Might I be allowed to participate? I've had considerable experience as "Shotgun Bearer" at Missouri Ozark weddings (heterosexual couples marrying, of course).

"Marriage by Mossberg." It's so moving I think I'm about to cry. [Please excuse me.]

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 18, 2012 | 7:18 a.m.

Not sure about Don, but I already am married, to a beautiful, female, WOMAN! If we continue with the liberal, "if it feels good, do it" mentality, however, two or more "marriages" to whom, or whatever, may be in the offing.

(Report Comment)
Louis Schneebaum May 18, 2012 | 12:37 p.m.

Don in a flowing gown, Frank in his finest powder blue tux, and Ellis, holding his finest antique shotgun and watching over them with a stern expression; all this, to the backdrop of the beautiful Missouri Ozarks. Good idea!

(Report Comment)
Ellis Smith May 18, 2012 | 1:56 p.m.

Actually, I'm not into antique firearms. I prefer a modern 12 gage auto* with collapsible stock (aka known as a "riot gun") and a lethal load: excellent for shotgun weddings or repelling home invasions by men or beasts, or men acting like beasts.

*-Pump action is accepable.

(Report Comment)
frank christian May 18, 2012 | 4:55 p.m.

Count me out! I've already married this one twice. I don't need a third time "charm". Besides, if my old, but cool, Bill Blass, subtly striped, "Diplomat" won't work -Pfthuuuu!

(Report Comment)
Brendon Steenbergen May 21, 2012 | 9:49 a.m.

The Memorial Day Weekend is truly a gem, and something our community should be proud of. Col. JKarl Miller does well to remind us too, this is way more than just an airshow! Mary Posner and her team of volunteers does an amazing job every year.

(Report Comment)
Ed Lane May 21, 2012 | 12:59 p.m.

Keep up the great work Colonel. Don't pay any attention to the attention seeking trolls who crawl out from under their rocks to croak about something they seem to know nothing about!!!!!!

SEMPER FI,

(Report Comment)
John Bliss May 21, 2012 | 5:13 p.m.

Don, in regards to your comments on Fed Bld, don't forget The US Supereme Court has some 64 Ten Commanments outside and inside.

(Report Comment)

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