May is about service and sacrifice

Published 7:00 am Saturday, May 17, 2014

This month is Military Appreciation Month and veterans and service men and women across the country are being honored and recognized for their service and sacrifice for our country.

Friday, Picayune Memorial High School held an event to allow veterans to share their stories with students and offered a Civil War reenactment.

While covering this event, one of the men I talked to conveyed his perception that war is glamorously portrayed in today’s media. I could tell he was dismayed by this fact, especially after he pointed out how terrible war really is.

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As an example, he said 600,000 Americans died in the Civil War. He added that the figure is more than all of the American deaths in every other war combined.

I thought for a minute after hearing this, the man is right. War is glorified in movies, television and video games.

I am just as guilty of consuming the topic through those mediums. I watch war movies, play war video games and watch war documentaries. However, I’m not the one being shot at.

In video games, when your avatar gets shot you respawn, essentially taking away the seriousness of what war is really like.

Real war doesn’t have respawn points, or super abilities to keep you in the fray. Instead, serious injuries and fatalities occur.

This thought puts in perspective the sacrifice that our country’s enlisted men and women give to this country.

They know they are training to fight for their country, what it stands for and the seriousness of what their service could mean; their family may never see them again.

If you know or meet a veteran, enlisted service man or woman or anyone else who puts their life on the line for the betterment of society, be sure to show your appreciation.