This Memorial Day, let us be mindful of not only the WWII and Korean veterans who fought in so-called “acceptable” wars, but also those of the unpopular wars that followed. My husband, a Vietnam War veteran, returned home, with a purple heart, in 1968 to his country that was at war with itself over whether it should even have a presence in South Vietnam. Like him, returning vets from that war were greeted with indifference, not parades, and in the eyes of some, were regarded as enemies of the United States.
I salute all the men and women who was “dishonorably discharged” before the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in 2010 for no other reason than they were homosexual. I am sorry for those dismissed for being who they are and unfairly perceived as threats to others in the ranks.
For those who have returned from war in Afghanistan with post traumatic stress disorder, are frequent visitors to mental health clinics, contemplate suicide daily, I wish more could be done to ameliorate your plight.
We all pay a price for war, either psychological or physical. For all those who died or are maimed, or currently serving in the Armed Forces, I thank you for your service.