Thursday, April 20, 2017

The question is, when do we actually prove we are a grateful nation?

This morning I got into an email exchange with Rick Stacy over at 105.9 FM. I listen to his show everyday and he never fails to make me laugh. He's the type of guy who can insult you and you end up hugging him for it. That is, other than this morning when he was talking about POTUS extending the privatization of veterans healthcare like it was a good thing.

Ok, I'm sure you know that made my head explode! I tried to call the station but they didn't answer the call. I collected my senses, sort of, and let my blood pressure almost go back to normal, before I fired off an email.

I didn't expect and answer, but he answered it when he was off the air. It took a couple of tries but he understood what I was trying to say and I understood where he got his information from. I told him I still think he's smart and a couple of other things and have no regrets being a daily listener.

I'm sure you can see this got to me but not for the reasons you think. I know he cares about our troops and our veterans. So why would he think treating veterans like civilians was acceptable? Why would he think that sending veterans into the same mess the rest of us deal with was worthy of their service?

This is the thing that gets to me all the time. Folks seem to think this is the best this country can do for our veterans? Seriously?

So why do we have a Congress? Why did they want to serve on the House Veterans Affairs Committee and produce these disgusting results? Yet, we the people, electing these yahoos simply let them pull off this crap all the time.

They show up at the DAV, VFW and American Legion conventions, make their speeches while begging for votes instead of begging for forgiveness? 

Revolutionary WarThe next morning on June 20, the State House was mobbed by as many as 400 soldiers demanding payment. The soldiers blocked the door and initially refused to allow the delegates to leave. Alexander Hamilton, then a delegate from New York, persuaded the soldiers to allow Congress to meet later to address their concerns. The soldiers did allow the members of Congress to peacefully adjourn that afternoon.[3] That evening, a small Congressional committee, headed by Hamilton, met in secret to draft a message to the Pennsylvania Council, asking them to protect Congress from the mutineers. The letter threatened that Congress would be forced to move elsewhere if the Council did not act.[2]

Civil WarIt wouldn’t be until the Acts of 1818 and 1832 that full remediation of pensions would take place. Fraudulent claims abused the provisions of these Acts as enough time had elapsed to make it difficult to prove (or disprove) that a claimant had qualifying service.The Civil War wasn’t much better. Confederate soldiers had to rely on state-level pensions, while Union soldiers didn’t get much better treatment from the federal government. It wasn’t until the 20th Century that many of the pensions were paid to Civil War veterans and their widows.
WWIAs many as 20,000 former soldiers and their families had converged on Washington in the summer of 1932, the height of the Great Depression, to support Texas Congressman Wright Patman’s bill to advance the bonus payment promised to World War I veterans. Congress had authorized the plan in 1924, intending to compensate the veterans for wages lost while serving in the military during the war. But payment was to be deferred until 1945. Just one year earlier, in 1931, Congress overrode a presidential veto on a bill to provide, as loans, half the amount due to the men. When the nation’s economy worsened, the half-bonus loans were not enough, and the unemployed veterans now sought the balance in cash. Known as Bonus Marchers, they came in desperation from all across the nation, hopping freight trains, driving dilapidated jalopies or hitchhiking, intent on pressuring Congress to pass the legislation. The administration vehemently opposed the measure, believing it inflationary and impractical given the $2 billion annual budget deficit.

Getting the idea, you can look up more of the stuff Congress forgot to put on their "to do list" after they sent men and women to fight the country's battles.

Congress had been given the jurisdiction over all of it back in 1946 when the first Veterans Affairs Committee was putting their butts in their chairs and have been sitting on that awesome responsibility ever since.

  1. Veterans' measures generally.
  2. Pensions of all the wars of the U.S., general and special.
  3. Life insurance issued by the government on account of service in the Armed Forces.
  4. Compensation, vocational rehabilitation, and education of veterans.
  5. Veterans' hospitals, medical care, and treatment of veterans.
  6. Soldiers' and Sailors' Civil Relief.
  7. Readjustment of servicemen to civilian life.
  8. National Cemeteries.
But why would they want to actually do their jobs? Why would any of us actually demand accountability from any of them? Why would we when the press fails to even mention any of the history military families have been dealing with since the Patriots were not just fighting off the best military in the world but had to hide from their fellow citizens wanting to keep things just they way they were?

Easy, because if you are not part of a military family, it is all too easy to forget these men and women are willing to pay any price for defending this nation and dying for each other but the one price they should never, ever, have to pay is our finding any of this acceptable.

The question is, when do we actually prove we are a grateful nation?