Thursday, October 8, 2009

Our Combat Troops: Use 'em, abuse 'em and put 'em on the list.

Our armed citizenry is ULTIMATELY what keeps us safe from invasion on our home soil (provided the second amendment is still around if it ever happens). But before that, it's our military that keeps us safe from the larger powers that could glaze our cities. I have the utmost respect for these people who risk their lives following orders whether legitimately or under the guise that they're protecting America. Who can fault that? These are our people who sacrifice and spill their blood for what they believe is the good of the country. They are the ones who deserve the very best treatment we can give them when they return, regardless of whether we supported the cause they fought in.

And yet, it's our government that disgraces the honor, courage and sacrifice they make. We've all heard the stories and seen the reports of how the troops are shorted of supplies and sometimes absolutely necessary war items. And yet, our government continues to allow budgets for less important things than protecting the lives of our soldiers. We've seen the reports and heard the stories of how long some have waited for medical care or received poor medical care. We've heard and seen the instances of fallen soldiers families who have lost benefits, not been recognized, or been left in the cold. We've seen how the military is used as a pawn to create distractions during political scandals and divert the public's attention from pressing matters at home that are politically unpopular. Finally, we all know how our government is now hiring mercenaries (i.e. Black Water) to carry out tasks that would be unbecoming of our military or without the same culpability.

Now I know there are the government's weather balloon explanations for everyone of these claims I've made which is why I didn't bother to find references and cite them. The simple fact is that for years, it has walked like a duck and quacked like a duck so I'm just going to call it a duck and expect it to continue acting like one. I hope the metaphor isn't lost on younger readers.

I have a dear friend who holds a high rank in our military and has served for several decades plus. He recently came back from yet another tour of Iraq. He was sent out under Bush and came back under Obama. He originally volunteered for the mission. However, after he volunteered, he was pushed way past his supposed date of return and subsequently lost some of his life's earnings here. Certainly, he is more fortunate than some who lost limb or life, but it's still not right.

I asked him, "what does your branch of the military think of O'Bama?" He answered, "I'm not permitted to speak about our commander in chief that way." He then went on to tell me something that just about made me vomit, "I will tell you something that has many of us very upset and myself included. They (government) are worried the returning Vets could become terrorists. They have a list of disgruntled vets who they are watching because they suspect they may become terrorists. With as many vets as are disgruntled right now, that would put over half on that list."

Wow. This LIST SHIT HAS GONE TOO FAR! The very men we train, ask for sacrifice, send away to suffer god knows what for causes that often can no longer be justified are, by the very virtue of their training, now on a terrorist watch list! It's disgusting, vile and from our own government. It's more "Minority Report" mentality again, from the Department of Homeland Securities Intelligence Analysts office. And our officials just don't know when to stop!

In all honesty, their analysis maybe correct. But, to destroy the honor of these fine people and make their lives any more difficult back at home because a few may crack is like putting all of us on the sex offenders list because a few of us may molest children! This IS INSANITY! I think it just goes to show that the people in high offices have long lost the ability to connect with the real world. They consider themselves a higher form of life when actually, they're lower.

Here's another distortion of equity. Rape victims receive special treatment and coddling. We're taught rape is a heinous crime, right up there with murder. Rape destroys the victim. They're plagued with nightmares and have a hard time functioning in society. Or so the worst of them do. It's these symptoms that we overflow with sympathy for. Do these symptoms sound familiar?

They do to me. They sound like Post Traumatic Stress Disorder symptoms. We recruit, train and deploy our 18 year old children and send them on missions that in many situations result in the equivalent fate for them as rape. Just try to reconcile that in your mind. If your daughter were raped, you would go insane with rage. Yet, you might let her join our military, train, go on a mission where she would see and experience killing, unspeakable brutality, maybe tortured and then suffer all the same mental torture for the rest of her life as if she had been raped! Yet, we have more compassion for rape victims here at home than the countless men and women of our military who have suffered worse in battlefields.

Like everything else in our culture lately, it's upside down, priorities have been inverted. When forced to chose between the life of a newborn and the life of an 18 year old, we choose to protect the life of newborn because it's innocent and cute. Yet, the 18 year old has had 18 years of parental blood, sweat and money invested in him, not to mention the investment of our community through support and education plus all the animals that gave their lives to feed him. Now at 18, finally fully prepared to start to realize the value of that investment, most mothers would still send that one off to war to protect the newborn. Because, the newborn could be the next Einstein? How about the next Hitler? It's ludicrous.

What's the solution here? First, we have to get our priorities right again. Second, we have to stop the paranoia and fear factories. We have to stop listening to the paranoia and fear factories. These include our media and now our government. Both enterprises cash in big on the fear pills they sell us plus the control it gives them over us. Right or left, if it's selling fear based on no formal statistics or histories, it needs to be really questioned as something actionable.

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