To the editor:
Duty: “a force of moral obligation.” These four letters are powerful influences as we determine how we lead our lives and, indeed echoing throughout all recorded history of mankind, have swayed the course of all human conduct. Volumes have been written, and countless speeches have explored these four letters.
One of the most poignant and stirring was a speech delivered in 1963 by General of the Armies Douglas MacArthur as he spoke to the assembled West Point cadets; his “Duty, Honor Country” address.
Duty compels the pilot of a burning B-17 bomber to stay at his post until all crew members have safely exited the aircraft, and he is lost as the stricken plane explodes. Duty inspires a soldier to leave the relative safety of his foxhole and pull a wounded comrade to safety. A Marine on Iwo Jima falls on a grenade, his buddies live. Duty.