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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Libertarian Response to Memorial Day Applause

Back on the Sunday of Memorial Day, I lead the music at my church in the Chicago suburbs. During the transition between music and preaching, a pastor came out and asked those who had served or were currently serving in the Armed Forces to stand, so we could publicly thank them for their service.

Now, if I had been sitting down in the congregation at that moment, I could have inconspicuously remained motionless, and gained a smug sense of satisfaction in my private rebellion against international conquest.

On stage, I felt obligated to applaud. I know that as a libertarian, I'm not required to be a pacifist. I can more than empathize with Ron Paul's "just war" philosophy. But I caught myself looking around the room, trying to gauge the ages of those standing, and determine my personal objection toward the different conquests they were a part of.

Help me out here. What should my response be toward these undeniably brave and sacrificial Americans?

Eric Olsen,
Regular Columnist, THL
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