“For over 200 years, our nation has been accumulating a tremendous debt and passing this debt along to the next generation and the next,” said Manning. “And how should our children, these next generations, feel about this debt they inherit? They should be proud. They should be thankful, and they should embrace this debt with open arms and open hearts.”
Manning said U.S. soldiers have been protecting America’s freedom for more than 235 years, and many of them have given the ultimate sacrifice. He added that he’s been asked many times if this country is doing the right and necessary thing by fighting wars overseas.
He added that while he doesn’t know the answer to that question, he can say that American children haven’t had to personally experience war in roughly 150 years, while children in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and other countries have.
Manning said that while the “utopian idea” of peace is a noble one, wars America has fought have ended slavery, genocide and have killed terrorists. “Without veterans, America would not be America,” he said, to much applause.
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