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I am a Veteran

Discussion in 'The VMBB Poets' started by Guest, Feb 27, 2003.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Misterstan
    Moderator
    Posts: 172
    (5/25/01 6:27:52 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del All I am a Veteran
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    The following Letter to the Editor appeared in today's Arkansas Democrat Gazette, forwarded by a friend. The author writes very eloquently why we are not at work Monday. Enjoy the day. Remember the Veterans. They have
    earned our respect and admiration.

    Stan Lambert
    St. Clair Shores, Michigan
    ---------------------------------------------------------

    A Veteran speaks his mind

    I am a veteran and I'm probably different from you.

    I don't hunt, because I've been the hunted and I know how it feels.

    I don't own a gun, because I've seen the effects of one and I don't want to see it again.

    I don't care what you do today, because I know that what I did yesterday gives you the freedom to do it. Just don't tell me it's your "right."

    I've listened to non-veterans tell me "how it was" just because they once read a book. I kept my mouth shut, because it's rude to call someone names to his face.

    I have memories you cannot and will not understand ever.

    I have feelings about this country that you cannot and will not understand, either.

    I am a veteran.

    I answered when I was called, put on a uniform, traveled away from home and did what I was told to do. I didn't hide. I didn't run. I didn't look for some excuse or some way out. I still have that uniform in a storage box and
    I will put it on again if the need arises.

    Some call me stupid. Some call me brave. Some call me uninformed. Some call me a hero.

    I call myself a veteran, and I am different from you.

    In the morning, when you see me at work, you should thank me.

    In the evening, when we're in a bar together, you should buy me a drink.

    On Sunday, when we're sitting together in church, you should thank our God for me.

    I don't want any parades. Walking makes me tired.

    I don't want any medals or ribbons. I have enough already stored in a dresser drawer.

    I don't want any monuments or memorials. They only cause controversy.

    Don't call me a patriot. Don't call me a criminal. I only did what you wanted done. I did it and you didn't.

    That makes me different from you.

    LEWIS M. PASSEN
    Little Rock


    oneknight
    Moderator
    Posts: 981
    (5/25/01 6:48:10 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: I am a Veteran
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    Beautiful! Very well said. Thanks for posting the
    eye opener and for some, a rude awakening.

    Rons Toys
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 47
    (5/25/01 8:49:24 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: I am a Veteran
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    I got this off another site
    Ron



    They carried P-38 can openers and heat tabs, watches and dog tags, insect
    repellent, gum, cigarettes, Zippo lighters, salt tablets, compress bandages,
    ponchos, Kool-Aid, two or three canteens of water, iodine tablets, sterno,
    LRRP-rations, and C-rations stuffed in socks.

    They carried standard fatigues, jungle boots, bush hats, flak jackets and steel
    pots.

    They carried the M-16 assault rifle.

    They carried trip flares and Claymore mines, M-60 machine guns, the M-70 grenade
    launcher, M-14's, CAR-15's, Stoners, Swedish K's, shotguns, .45 caliber pistols,
    silencers, the sound of bullets, rockets, and choppers, and sometimes the sound
    of silence.

    They carried C-4 plastic explosives, an assortment of hand grenades, PRC-25
    radios, knives and machetes. Some carried napalm, CBU's and large bombs; some
    risked their lives to rescue others. Some escaped the fear, but dealt with the
    death and damage. Some made very hard decisions, and some just tried to
    survive.

    They carried malaria, dysentery, ringworms and leaches. They carried the land
    itself as it hardened on their boots.

    They carried stationery, pencils, and pictures of their loved ones - real and
    imagined.

    They carried love for people in the real world and love for one another. And
    sometimes... ...they disguised that love: "Don't mean nothin'!"

    They carried memories for the most part, they carried themselves with poise and
    a kind of dignity. Now and then, there were times when panic set in, and people
    squealed or wanted to, but couldn't; when they twitched and trembled and covered
    their heads and said "Dear God" and hugged the earth and fired their weapons
    blindly and cringed and begged for the noise to stop and went wild and made
    stupid promises to themselves and God and their parents, hoping not to die.

    They carried the traditions of the United States military, and memories and
    images of those who served before them.

    They carried grief, terror, longing and their reputations.

    They carried the soldier's greatest fear: the embarrassment of dishonor.

    They crawled into tunnels, walked point, and advanced under fire, so as not to
    die of embarrassment. They were afraid of dying, but too afraid to show it.

    They carried the emotional baggage of men and women who might die at any moment.

    They carried the weight of the world.

    They carried each other.

    Remember them this Memorial Day, May 28th.


    dap22
    Senior Chief Moderator II
    Posts: 588
    (5/25/01 8:49:41 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: I am a Veteran
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    Amen brother! Should be required reading for all citizens.

    Indybear57
    Moderator
    Posts: 316
    (5/25/01 9:34:03 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del
    ezSupporter
    Re: I am a Veteran
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    Stan and Ron-good posts by both of you. We must never forget. Also recommend "We Must Not Forget" on the Chief's page if you haven't read it already.



    Edited by: Indybear57 at: 5/25/01 10:37:04 am

    Misterstan
    Moderator
    Posts: 175
    (5/25/01 9:42:19 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: I am a Veteran
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    Ron,

    I believe it was Sharon who posted the same article prior to our losing the Vietnam Memories Discussion topics.

    Thanks for finding it and putting it back on the board for us.

    You sure do find some interesting sites on the Internet. I, for one, am grateful for you sharing the best ones with us.

    Stan Lambert
    St. Clair Shores, Michigan

    LarryJK
    Senior Chief Moderator III
    Posts: 18
    (5/25/01 10:31:16 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: I am a Veteran
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    "Two Thumbs Up" to you all!!
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