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Memorial Day 2015, My rant.


In a past life I was in the United States Navy. My time serving our country was a difficult one, at least for those of us serving. It was post Viet Nam, and moral was low, one may say it sucked. As we all know though, "Life is what we make it."

I am not a good creator, though.

When I was assigned to the USS Wainwright, I was young and naive. The truth is, I have not grown very much since then. Now I am older and am still kinda stupid, yet I have an understanding of the roll my ship had in the global theater. It was minor, yet my ego makes me wonder just how critical.

The Wainwright, while I was aboard, made many political manoeuvres, yet we never really did anything overtly aggressive. We participated in the subversive and closed wars of Reagan. I don't know what would have happened if my ship had not been where she was, yet I know we would not be where we are now.

Yet, looking back at our choices back then does not change the reality that we live in today. Our world is even more fucked up than in those desperate days of the early '80s. We cannot deny this obvious fact. It truly is not the fault of the military,  they have executed their orders faithfully. They have done their duty without a hitch. We have the best armed forces in the world, bar none.

One of my closest friends participated in the Panama fiasco, another was critically wounded in a "training mission" in "South America" as a SF member, And another was in Iraq and was wounded while on patrol and even now deals with PTSD and other related brain injury issues. They all have wounds which will never be healed. What did they sacrifice their bodies and minds for?

Like religion, our political outlook is manipulated by those whose selfish interest supersedes those they serve, that would be We The People. 

I salute those who serve. I salute those who have made the choice to self-sacrifice for our way of life. I was a fuck-up back in the day, and maybe still am. Yet I understand that my country needs young women and men to step up and fight and sometimes kill, to keep our way of life a real and evolving dream. Those who have served did what they were told to...without question. They did as they were told, without without reservation. 

Do you, the reader know why?

Maybe it is because our country, our ideals, before being perverted by self-interest groups, ARE the ones everyone should strive to achieve.

Our country, The United States of America, is the greatest place in our whole wide world, bar nothing. We should never forget this, we need to live it and earn the privilege of saying those words honestly...Every single day of our lives.

We are the best because we earn that privilege. We are the most important nation in the world, not because any deity has said so, but because we work for it. We are the best because we earn it. It is not a god given right, but one that we work for.

Our men and women fight for our right to say these words, they give their bodies and minds for the privilege we take for granted. Let's think though, what did those young and somewhat naive solders and marines and sailors and airmen do to ensure our freedom?

They trained for so long in a formal school while training in the field, sweating and bleeding. Then they get sent to an emotionally and physically dangerous environment with little instruction. When they come home, they are stigmatized and labelled as outcasts.

These people gave all of themselves to protect our way of life.

By Definition, they are heroes. So, let's treat them as such. When you see someone on the side of the road, please remember the choice they made and please don't just pass them by thinking, "Oh there is a guy. It is so sad that they live like that." Just remember he or she, may have done a profound act to protect our way of life and possibly suffered for it.

Every single one who has served is a hero, they would have done as they were told. Many gave more than we can understand, more than their lives...they gave their very essence as a person. They gave for US, and our way of life and now it is time for us to return their honor, to show them that their duty and service was worth their personal and group sacrifice.

My salute and respect is what I can give to those who have given of themselves. I stand in honor to all of you who have given yourselves to the glory of what we call THE UNITED STATES of AMERICA.

Thank you, Neil M. Turner.



olc

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