REFERRED TO AS THE MY LAI MASSACRE

Discussion in 'Vietnam Memories Forum' started by rooter, Mar 16, 2017.

  1. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    Jim please remind me of the DAP...was that the bumping of fists? Actually there were few
    blacks in the Seabees...the few that were rather attracted many of the blacks from the
    Marines, being our close association with the Corps... I was the Utilitiesman rate and
    of all the time in the working ranks I knew only one black ...Thompson from NYC...nice
    guy and skillful with all aspects of the trades incorporated in that UT rate. Chief
     
  2. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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  3. jwdurf

    jwdurf Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    In the Marines there wasn't black or white, just light green and dark green :rolleyes:.

    I was raised in a very white area, and my first real personal exposure to both blacks and racism was in the Marines. This was in '78, and the social structure was definitely segregated. In my observation, the black enlisted personnel segregated themselves and by their choice would not socialize with whites. This was far less pronounced among Officers. Now, I've heard all the sociological bs about white privilege and generational racism but the reality was that the blacks would not interact socially with their white counterparts, not the other way around.
     
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  4. jim brady

    jim brady Well-Known Member

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    JW - I saw the very same thing in the Army, starting with that Dap thing.

    Chief - the Dap was seen as pretty funny when it first started. A couple of black guys would meet and do these silly hand slaps and fist bumps. Very soon it became clear that all of this was a distancing ritual (on the part of the black soldiers doing it). A very close friend of mine for about 3 or 4 months got into this crap and suddenly we were no longer friends - and I didn't even exist to him.

    I grew up in an area in the 50s and early 60s where the only races were white, Hispanic and Hawaiian. When we were kids, nobody cared what tone your skin or hair color was, and it was nothing to go into this house or that house regardless of who lived there. When I got In Country and met a guy about my age who was also new there - it was natural to become friends. In the end of it all I learned a lesson - it was that anyone can be prejudiced and hateful - and that you don't need to be white to be a jerk.
     
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  5. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    Hollywood attempted to handle that 'racial-in-the-ranks' very delicately...Forest Gump and
    Bubba...I was mentioning E-6 Utilitiesman from NYC Thompson...met him on Bermuda though
    I was there with a Mobile Construction Battalion and Tom was there on shore duty Public Works.
    After that tour I was assigned an advanced UT school at the Seabee base in California..Tom had caught the class also...My girl friend(wife of 63 years now) worked at RCA Los Angeles and had this black friend who wanted a date with a serviceman. Tom and I double-dated several times with Mary and her friend... After class this last time Tom and I was heading down coastal 101 and at the Trankas gas station this old pickup truck pulled across our travel lane...the
    CHIPS officer carried us back to our base hospital...no damage but my 1950 Buick was a
    total loss...after school Tom and I served in the same battalion on the British West Indies
    island of Antigua...short months later I was transferred out to Morocco where my then wife
    joined me...BTW, on legal hold there because of the accident, right after school she and I
    eloped to Mexico and got married...Tom really kicked up his heels with the native gals there
    on Antigua!!! Chief
     
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