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Our veterans have done a lot of good

Because today is Veterans Day, we must give a big “Thank you” to everyone who has served in our armed forces from the American Revolution to the War on Terrorism. There is no way to know just what our country would have been like if we didn’t have them.

There is no doubt that we wouldn’t enjoy the same freedoms we have today. We might not have the freedom of speech and the freedom of the press that we enjoy.

In other countries, we could be censored before ever getting the opportunity to speak out against our governmental leaders. Here, we have the right to speak our minds without the fear of having to have the government approve our messages.

In other countries, state religions or a lack of religion has been imposed on their population. Anyone who didn’t fall in line could be arrested or even executed because they didn’t follow that religion. We enjoy the freedom to worship the way we want, and the government has pledged through our Constitution not to interfere with it.

Without our veterans’ help, it would be impossible to have maintained those freedoms. That help from veterans extends past our borders.

Countries around the world also might not be in as good of shape as they are without our veterans’ service outside the U.S. Our veterans have helped create more stable environments in nations that were oppressed. Those efforts may not have been flawless, but many residents in those countries probably appreciated what our troops did for them.

There are more than 447,000 veterans living in the state.

We would like to recognize all of them today. Your service and dedication to our country will never be forgotten.