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Post-Memorial Day reflection

Veterans and active members of the armed forces

Veterans and active members of the armed forces unfurl a 100-foot long American flag during the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum's annual Memorial Day ceremony. Credit: Charles Eckert

On Memorial Day, we honored the thousands of Americans who have sacrificed their lives for this country. But just who are these men and women?

At one time, the military draft produced a cross section of all America. Now, many are just kids who didn’t have college plans or good job opportunities. They do the fighting and dying. And to us, the casualties are for the most part, unknown soldiers.

Waving the flag and watching a parade are not enough. There should be a draft that provides equal probability for all healthy 18-year-olds to be subject to front-line combat. Those who fight and die should represent all of America. I proudly served in the Army for three years.

Bill Domjan, Melville

How dare President Donald Trump use Memorial Day to make political statements, pinning medals on himself [“Trump honors heroes after tweet is criticized,” News, May 29]. Will the ignorance and arrogance ever stop? His ridiculous statements on foreign policy aid and abet our enemies. Does he know that the leader of North Korea runs a system of concentration camps? That Russia has thousands of nuclear warheads aimed at us? And yet he bestows pleasantries on their dictators.

My uncle, Navy radioman Eugene Reynolds, was lost when his ship was torpedoed in the Pacific Ocean in World War II. On Memorial Day, he must have been turning over in his grave.

Eugene J. Reynolds, Ridge