America: A Nation of Sergeants

Marine Corps Sgt. Jack Eubanks told Byron York, “I Just Gave John McCain My Purple Heart.” He, like we, want the sacrifice to mean something.

“I just gave John McCain my Purple Heart,” Marine Sgt. Jack Eubanks told me a few minutes after McCain finished a speech at a campaign rally in Woodbridge, Virginia Saturday. “I said, ‘I want to give this to you, sir, as a reminder that we want you to keep your promise to bring us home in victory and honor, so it will mean something.'”

“We fought over there, and we want it to mean something,” Eubanks continued. “We don’t want to come back and it just be all for nothing.”

Eubanks, 22 years old, knows as much about the war as anyone. On October 3, 2005, he was in a Humvee on patrol near the Syrian border when an IED went off. “I was thrown from the vehicle, took some shrapnel, landed on my spine and mashed it up a little bit,” Eubanks told me in a remarkably good-humored way. He was injured much more than just a little; it took him eleven months to recover. And then — then he volunteered to go back. In August 2007, he was hurt again in a strangely similar way. “Hit by a mortar, thrown from a vehicle — the same situation,” Eubanks told me. Now, he’s teaching recruits at Marine Corps Base Quantico — and walking with a cane.

Unlike The Message(TM) fed to us at every turn, we are not a nation of community organizers, bitter malcontents or hyper-intellectuals or even ‘education reformers’ rubbing ideological elbows with Hugo Chavez.

We are a nation of quiet doers, not just loud mouthed gripers.

We, America, remain as we always have been – a Nation of Sergeants; a people who fight with grit, think with clarity, enter each day with determined work ethic, and love with intensity. And our love of country – for what it is, not simply some farcical vision of what it could be or should have been – is no more blind or rote than our love of family.

And it is just as fierce.

We are a Nation of Sergeants. Thank you, Sgt. Eubanks, for your service, your sacrifice, and for your reminder. Semper Fi, Marine.

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