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I still, no matter what, think being a Veteran is an accomplishment to be proud of, but. I say 'but' for a reason. Sometimes, my once fellow brothers in arms, never cease to mystify me, especially in this new political arena. Many, many of them once watched our backs in a war climate, yet here we are fifty years later and now many of them are supporting the backs of people who Still don't care about their well being. THAT mystifies me to no end.
Since Vietnam, which next to the American Civil War, was and still is, the most unpopular War in this country's history. Still unpopular with our American government, so much so, I do not see where America is really grateful for our service whatsoever. Not even to this day.
I've lived to see things like: "We need to stop communism in Vietnam before it spreads."(1960's) "Tie a yellow ribbon around the old oak tree" (1990's) And, most recently on Facebook: "Support Our Troops." (20016) I've learned that ALL are just slogan campaigns to encourage sending our young men to their deaths. Gotta stir up patriotism Somehow, I suppose.
Since it's been said Russia meddled in America's voting process and since it has been said, our new head person has basically allowed Russia to 'walk right through America's front door' then I've been wondering 'why in Hell Did we go to Vietnam?' No one really seems to touch that question, much less come up with a reasonable explanation.
So WHY did my 'used to be brothers in arms' vote for people who would just as soon forget them as to look at them? Was there something I missed when I thought we were still loyal to those who were oh so hell bent on stopping communism from reaching America? Were they really concerned about that or did they become so jaded along the way, I am now shaking my head in awe of their not even being loyal to their own well being, much less their fellow Veterans? I'm not angry, simply mystified and deeply saddened when it comes to what appears to me, as a sudden turn of events about their thinking process.
People, these days, come up to me on the streets, in restaurants and stores, saying: "Thank you for your service." Well fifty years in coming still seems like a very long time to me. What does one say when people's feelings appear to sway with the wind on a particular century or year? Should I now be grateful for once being spat upon, the once 'we hate you' form of gratitude in 1970, to now, 'thank you for your service?' Especially when it looks like we did not keep communism out of American government? (BTW I wear my 'Vietnam Vet' hat because I'm still proud to be a veteran.
Sad to see: In 1960's the American military could not even buy the better made, Chinese rifles to save our lives in Vietnam. To now if it isn't Chinese made, you cannot even purchase it in America. Well, I for one, can see clearly that in ANY war, the American young person, always, always from poorer families, is and always will be, nothing more than cannon fodder to a government who cares so little for their own cause they make sure They nor their privileged children, will ever pick up a weapon. They just keep sending poor kids, since I suppose we are expendable to them. Funny, our parents didn't and still don't, think we are expendable. When I see 'All lives matter" I Still think: 'Who's lives we talkin?"
So all in all, I loved my brothers in arms, but do not recognize any of them in the year 2016 nor will recognize them any better in 2017. Just some food for thought.