I posted once before about my feelings on Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Y'all know that I am a huge supporter of equal rights and a totally unhuge supporter of the US armed forces. I have said, and I passionately believe, that adding more people to the military in this country is not a step in any right direction.
And now there is someone who will not be taking any steps in any direction, ever again. Lt. James Byler of the US Marine Corp has lost one entire leg, half of the other, and part of his left arm in an explosion in Afghanistan. Lt. Byler was "Little Byler" back in high school, to distinguish him from his older brother, John (one of my earliest childhood friends), who went just by "Byler," and to distinguish him from the other two Jameses on our fencing team.
Little Byler was a much better sabre fencer than I ever was or would be. Depth perception, I am told, is helpful in fencing. Legs are also pretty useful for the sport.
I am not a praying person, but the Byler family all are, and some of you may be. If you pray, please do so for them; I know they would appreciate it. I will just be remembering times spent with Bylers large and small, wondering why so many people I know rejoice at being allowed to serve their country in this particular way, and listening to Eric Bogle.