Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Phony Veterans

Wow! I have a DD-214 in my back pocket that shows I have nine years, ninth months and six days of honorable service in Uncle Sam’s Army. That stint included two trips to Nam and two Bronze Stars.

I was ‘lucky’ enough to see Tet of ’68 up close and personal. My second trip included about six weeks in Cambodia in April of ’70. I know how to fly a helicopter, shoot a four deuce mortar and fix pretty much anything electronic. Not exactly an REMF, but I was there.

Now I realize that my anti-war views are not welcomed in some quarters, but don’t diss me because I disagree with you.

There are a few facts that we should be able to agree upon:

1. Veterans are treated like shit by the Veterans Administration.
2. Veterans represent 25% of the homeless population of the United States, yet comprise only 11% of the adult population of this country.
3. The Veterans Administration is woefully under funded.
4. Jobs and Veterans are problematic.
5. PTSD and TBI are going to become epidemic as time passes.
6. Depleted uranium is going to dwarf Agent Orange in terms of scope and toxicity.

You will not shut us up. On Sunday the Veterans For Peace marched behind the American Legion’s Veterans Day parade in Boston. About a block behind the parade. Led by five motorcycle Officers.

My pics of the day are somewhat spotty, as I was attending to business.

We assembled

The IVAW agreed to the American Legion’s rules – one banner, no signs – and were allowed to march at the end of the parade.

Here they are stepping off

I caught a picture of this puppy getting into the parade while we were waiting for the street sweepers.

Nice looking .50 cal

Here we are waiting to start

A few pics along the way

When we got to City Hall Plaza, veterans willing to risk arrest went down to stand in front of the podium

This pic made it to Obermann Monday night

Here's the Obermann segment on Countdown 11.12.2007:

You should know the oldest veteran arrested on Sunday was 92.

Our VFP video:

In closing, a personal observation: The Boston Police treated us with humor and respect for the most part, and for that I thank them.

The Boston Police were doing their job right up to the point they tried to spin the day:


At about 2:00pm, on Sunday, November 11, 2007, officers assigned to the Veteran’s Day Parade in the area of One City Hall Plaza observed a large group of individuals protesting in front of the staging area. The protestors, a group from an organization called Veterans for Peace, created a disturbance throughout the proceedings. On several occasions, police officers warned the group that if they continued to deliberately interrupt and disrupt the assembly they would face arrest. When offered an alternative location from which to protest from, the protestors refused. At which point, officers arrested 18 individuals (15 males & 3 females) and charged all of them with Disturbing a Lawful Assembly of People.

We found out later from the Arlington Advocate:

"Also...we were told by a media relations department member of the BPD that you were chanting loudly in front of the stage, and obstructing the view was anyone in your group chanting?"

It's hard to chant with a bandana over your mouth. I know.

1 comment:

rasputin1952 said...

I have said before, and will again, that it is appalling that the American Legion/VFW could stand by, and allow anyone, much less Veterans, be arrested without protest for said "affront".

Those of us that have worn one or more of the uniforms of this nation, fought or were prepared to fight, for the Constitution, Liberty and our future as a Free Nation.

I've always been there for those who are considered the "underdog". I have been one of the many who stood and watched a march for Equality and basic Rights for all human beings, that has stepped from the curb and joined the march...and I've always been proud of the fact I've been capable of doing that. Those that stood behind Vets that were expressing an opinion, and by their refusal to act to prevent such an arrest, should be ashamed. Veterans Day is a day when we recognize the sacrifices made to keep this nation free. It is not owned by the VFW or the American is a day that is owned by no group, nor any individual, it is a day that we remember, and honor all those who have served, and their families as well, for they have sacrificed much over the life of this nation.

I support all Free Speech, even if I find it abhorrant. There is no way I can identify with a Nazi, but I refuse to see them silenced, for if you silence one group, you silence them all at some point. Where do we draw the line? There is no line to be drawn, we accept or reject what is being said, (caveat: in this case, I accept what is being said), but the decision is individually come to. No group has the "right" to silence another, especially a govenment "group". All that I have fought for, all that millions of others have fought and died for, all that is good, goes into the trash heap, if we allow others to dictate what is "allowed".

I am ashamed of those who stood upon the dias and allowed these Veterans to be arrested for precisely what they stood up and defended in the past. A sad state of affairs, to be sure.