The Daily Grind Video

by Michael Skolnik

Somehow we forgot.  Or somehow we wanted to forget.

We closed our eyes and went shopping.  We opened our eyes and put up ribbons.  We slept on the couch and changed the channel.  We went to work and didn’t read the paper.  We campaigned and forgot that it was election day.  We forgot.  We forgot.  We forgot.  How the hell did we forget?

In the past nine years, two million men and women have received a call that their time has come.  Their time has come to serve this country.  No matter how they feel about the orders given by their Commander In Chief, they serve.  They serve honorably and nobly.  Out of those two million brave soldiers who have received that call, one million two hundred and fifty thousand of them belong to us.  Our generation.  Our brothers.  Our sisters. Our cousins.  Our high school sweethearts.  Our husbands.  Our wives.  Our college roommates.  Our co-workers.  Our boyfriends. Our girlfriends.  Our neighbors. Our best friends.  They belong to us.  They are us.  But somehow we forgot. Or somehow we wanted to forget.


We are at war.  Whether we like it or not.   Whether we protested or cheered.  Whether we voted red, blue or purple.  We are at war.  Actually, we are fighting two wars.  Actually, let me not forget about the war at home, so that makes three.  For most of us, we don’t know what war looks like.  We don’t know what war sounds like, or smells like, or feels like.  We just know from what we see on the channel that we had already changed or the newspaper that we never read.  So, for most of us, we just don’t know.  Or maybe we don’t want to know.  It seems to be easier that way.


In twenty years from now, we will look back at this time in our history, and we will judge our generation on how we handled this moment.  How we handled the treatment of the one million two hundred and fifty thousand young men and women who will come home.  How we welcomed them back into our homes, into our offices, into our classrooms and into our hearts.  We will be judged on how we handled the destruction of two nations and the killing of hundreds of thousands of innocent victims.  This will be our moment at the pearly white gates.  This will be our moment at the altar.  Our moment in front of mom and dad.  How did we do?  How did we handle this challenge, one that many of us never asked for or supported, but yet it is still OUR challenge.


I thank two films that are nominated this weekend for an Academy Award for opening my eyes and my heart to the one million two hundred and fifty thousand brothers and sisters of mine who serve this beautiful country of ours and the nameless innocent victims that have been affected by our actions. I hope that The Hurt Locker and The Messenger are seen by every single member of our generation. 

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