From home town coffee shops to the edifices in Washington there is an outcry to put “boots on the ground” in a variety of places throughout the world. None of them pleasant. The call to arms referenced as well protected feet takes away the reality of the sentient being inside those boots.

Photo by Cpl. Lucian Friel

Photo by Cpl. Lucian Friel

In general, the people demanding the thousands of Boots be deployed aren’t the folks wearing them. They may have in the past, and I thank them for that, but now they are smugly sipping coffee and gnashing muffins while proclaiming all the world’s problems can be solved with a big bang and lots of Boots.

They are willing to send Boots because they don’t know Boots. I do. I am the mother of a Marine. My son had enlisted in August of 2001 and was scheduled to go to for Basic two months later. I am a veteran, but I am a mom first and when I offered to shuttle him to Canada after 9/11 he replied, “Somebody’s got to serve, and I’m the one to do it.”  He did (two tours in Iraq) and he does now as a Marine reservist. He is one of those Boots.

These magic Boots are our sons and daughters. They have names and faces, birthdays and bad days. They are people of intellect and humor. They have foibles and faults and great gifts to share. They are not just Boots.

As you ponder the world situation and look for solutions, if Boots in is the only way out then be sure they have what they need to do their job.

And look into their faces before you send them. Be sure you know Boots.