CORE STORIES, MY ESSAYS

FROM CITIZEN TO SOLDIER TO VETERAN

My nephew Alex went to boot camp at Parris Island yesterday. He joined the marines. For those who think only disadvantaged kids go, this was not the case with Alex. There are young men and women, no matter their status, who really do want to serve their country – people who want to step up to protect all those they hold dear.

Everybody who knows me, knows that I am anti-war. Yet, when one of my own puts themself into the middle of that war – as my brother Jim did in Viet Nam – I can only be proud. There is no other option. He made a brave decision. And all I can do is support him in that decision.

We all know people who have served. My hope is that the presidential candidates will not forget them once they have served – which continues to happen, no matter who the president happens to be in any given year or election cycle.

What did President Obama do for the veterans, except to hide the fact that they were mistreated upon returning home, by not being treated at all? What did President Bush do for the veterans, to make a better life for them? What did President Clinton do, except offer prayers. Veterans don’t need prayers. Prayers are like empty promises – asking some entity that you can’t see nor prove exists to do something that you don’t want to do, or that you don’t have the power or influence to do

Veterans need action. Now. Not next election cycle when that empty promise can be used again to get elected or re-elected.

For now, I am like any other family member hoping that our loved one, who puts him/her self into harms way for the rest of us, returns to us.

Thank you Alex – I love you big as the sky that you are – forever.






 

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