In light of Veteran’s Day I thought it was fitting to talk about something near to me: VETERANS. Given the article title you’d think that this was going to be a hippy dippy anti-war political rant — you’ve got the wrong girl. I’m from a long standing military tradition, which is what inspires today’s rant…
We’re a country who is still at war — which we forget in our daily lives. As American’s it seems as if we’re content to ignore this fact & focus on “more important things” like what Miley Cyrus has put her mouth on & what social disease Justin Bieber may have been exposed to (I should point out that the similarity of these 2 items amuses me, but I wasn’t intending a theme). SHAME ON US! There are so many of us that will just celebrate today as a day off. There will even be a handful of us that will change our Facebook Status to display their patriotism. Sorry kids, I gotta call bullshit.
I’m horrified by our behavior:
- Our soldiers are frequently blamed for things our government does that they have ZERO control over. In fact, I remember walking through the mall with my ex-husband, who had just gotten out of work & was in uniform, where we were confronted by a group of well meaning hippy dippy teenagers whose parents hadn’t taught them any values. Needless to say, we were in a post 9-11 time & our presence in Iraq was somehow my ex-husbands fault. I don’t mind telling you that I’m happy to blame him for a myriad of things, but I assure you — he doesn’t have that kind of power. The military has dictated just about everything in his life for the last 29+ years.
- Years ago there were many services for our servicemen & families. Now our vets, servicemen, & their families are lucky if they can find a doctor who will accept their health insurance. Sure, they could go on base, if they could find one — when we reduce military funding the fist things to get cut are services for our service members & bases closed.
- A large percentage of our military live below the poverty line — have you seen the military pay chart? There are many articles out there that will try to say that this not true, I’m not buying it. I just can’t help find the fact that we omit soldiers living in barracks from our census data to be interesting — what are we trying to hide?
- How many homeless veteran’s do you see every day? Many of these war heroes are suffering from mental illness &/or addiction — I’d like to see any of you keep your act together after seeing the horror these men have seen. I guess we forget that when we vote, or would rather think about lighter news topics — like Lindsay Lohan.
- In the US military service the majority of our service members have voluntarily served — where as in other countries service is mandatory. Interestingly, one of my friends recently became a US citizen, as part of his swearing in he had to commit to “bear arms where required by law” amongst many other items, things those of us “born American” never commit to (der, I know there’s still a draft — we’re talking about outside of that. Do you really think there will ever be another draft in the US?).
- Today’s troops are treated with ZERO respect. My grandfather fought at the Battle of Normandy, he came back as a war hero, a parade in his honor. My uncle, who was Naval Intelligence (sorry kids, you can’t call that an oxymoron unless you’re in the Navy) returned from service to be told: “here’s some civies, put them on there are protesters outside.” I’m not saying I agree with the Vietnam War, I’m saying: these kids are doing what their government TOLD THEM TO DO & saw things you & I can only imagine in our worst nightmares — agree or disagree, we must support them.
- Our prisoners are treated better than our service members.
Here’s the thing, I tend to believe we make the wrong decisions as a result of our ignorance, as opposed to our selfishness… I’ve given you a fair amount of info here today, you have a choice: go on living your life as was, enjoy your day off OR you can do the right thing & do something for our veterans…
What you can do:
- Make a donation to a military relief fund.
- Send holiday cards to a soldier
- Vote with our service members & their families in mind — I’m not endorsing this site, I’m asking that you’re educated when you hit the poles.
- Hire a veteran.
- Whenever someone brings up a “first world problem” remind them (or yourself) that we’re a country at war — our troops would love to have their biggest problem be: “the internet at Starbucks is slow today.”
Sure, sharing this blog might be something you could do to support our vets — but my voice isn’t as loud as all of our voices together. Go on your own tirade!