Thursday, May 29, 2008

Support the Troops, Indeed.

"You raised your right hand."

If I had a dollar for every time I've heard this phrase, I wouldn't need a regular job. In today's environment, servicemembers who speak out against the war are roundly shouted down with a similar response. Since we volunteered during a time of war, conservatives say, we have no right to complain about the abuses we endure: lengthening deployments, foreshortened dwell times, increased strains on family, substandard medical care. Personally, I think that the demand should be higher simply BECAUSE we volunteered, but many on the American Right don't seem to agree with me. Apparently placing patriotism over principle isn't enough to qualify as a "Real American."

And now, it seems that the statement applies to our education.

Here's a phrase: "Support the Troops." Anybody remember this? Look, I'm the last person one will ever hear demanding deferential treatment. If anything, the effusive shows of gratitude often creep me out. But it is galling to me, hearing the warmongers in our midst shriek about full backing for our Armed Services, only to then turn about and say that we don't deserve adequate benefits because, well, "we volunteered." These, by the way, are the same people who threatened me for speaking out.

This is your movement conservatism, America: a cabal of corporate-media shills and the well-funded interests who control them. There is no "conservative intelligentsia," only a group of tanned pundits, drowning in a sea of Aqua-Net, who say whatever they're paid to. They'll beat the drum of war as long as they can, and then abandon those who answer the call.

These are your gods, Joe Six-Pack. These are your priests, your patriots. These are your emperors, and they have no clothes.

More to the point, they have no souls.


Blogger Mia said...

You know, this blog actually makes me want to say something. I have been keeping to myself about all the war stuff because I don't keep up with it. I don't necessarily feel comfortable with the idea of people dying like they are. I have felt compelled to become a part of the military because I want to be out there with the guys not for the idea of war but for the idea of caring for those in need.

Now, we are faced with those who are in need. The VA system is denying our troops the medical care they need and deserve. These mostly kids come back mangled, leaving some of the body in the country the were sent to fight. What a reminder that every morning as you experience those phantom pains to know that you actually left something behind?

We aren't taking care of our troops. Support the Troops! When? Discounts? Not often and not that important. Handouts? When they need them, it isn't there. These guys aren't getting pain jack, aren't receiving the medical care to lead halfway normal lives to return as productive members of society. These guys become dependent, mostly on their families. And their families were initially dependent on them! What a horrible role reversal. Where is the pride we seem to exude for the military? Why do we fail to give them the basics? Through the glorification we use as a veil, we don't see past to identify and understand their true needs. What the hell? What happened to us in the health care industry (hello, VA, I'm talking to you)? Did you fail to remember that you yourselves took an oath to take care of those who need us and to do no harm? How about you politicians? You took an oath to look out for the interests of our countrymen. These soldiers are not treated like the human beings they are. They're treated like machines. KILL. DON'T SAY A WORD. God forbid these boys say anything negative. Our glorifying members of society will have nothing to do with it. You say that you are patriotic, show it. Actually support the troops, both positive and negative. Shame on you for being shortsighted if you want to dig in and criticize.

1:36 AM  
Blogger Hayden said...

I couldn't agree more. It breaks my heart to see what we are doing - and the ability of my countrymen/women to look past it, ignore the truth.

I suppose we shouldn't be surprised. It's the same surface rhetoric, lies and double-talk that got us into this war in the first place.

The consistency is appalling.

6:43 PM  
Blogger Army Sergeant said...

Amen. Fucking a-men.

I think Jon Stewart has it best. "Who ever gave these guys the idea the military would pay for college in the first place?" *flashes a montage of military advertising saying exactly that* "Oh, yeah..."

7:10 AM  
Blogger Robert Rouse said...

I learned in 1973 that the recruiters are not exactly upfront with the truth.

7:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think it is dispicable that they are actually fighting over raising the GI Bill for you all. I got lucky and had mine increased with a small deposit on my end right before I got out. It has always been my belief that the military should be treated and paid VERY WELL. It's a shame that those who stand on their soap boxes preaching support and mission shit are the ones that actually deny the benefits.

5:56 PM  

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