Tm Pterodactyl MT Outpost
This is NOT a political post, but the way we, as a society, care for our damaged veterans is a national discrace, and it has been for 50 years. A thank you once a year on Veterans Day is nice, but it fails to excuse the years of neglect.
Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
"The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
82 R65LS - gone but not forgotten
"Oh good, my dog found the chainsaw"
"I finally got my head together, now my body is falling apart."
To my surprise, the draft board allowed me to go back to college for a fifth year to complete two music BA's, one in arts and one in education. I asked what would happen then. "What do you plan to do?" "I plan to teach music." "Well, we are deferring teachers." So I completed my degrees and got a job teaching music at a first-class Junior High. That teaching deferrment was only good for one year, and of course the option of joining the post band was long gone.
I've never regretted my decision to move to Canada. I've enjoyed good careers as a public school teacher, a private teacher, a symphony musician (now in my 43rd season) and a gigging musician.
I regret the treatment Vietnam vets received when they returned home, but I think I understand it. This was a "bad war" both then and in retrospect. I believe serving you country is a good thing - and maybe it should be demanded - but blind allegiance to the current leader of any country is NOT a good thing.
US and Canadian involvement in wars certainly did not end with Vietnam. I believe the question is still open whether the enormous dollars and lives that Iraq and Afghanistan cost both our countries was worth it.
But we do still need a dedicated, well-trained military. I favor a well-trained, well-paid group of professionals who hopefully remain for many years because they find satisfaction in their work and get increasingly good at it. But they know it can be very dangerous work.
The fact that both the US and Canada have reduced their support for damaged vets seems to me the ultimate stupidity. If we are to have volunteer soldiers, I would think they have to know the support will be there when they come home damaged in some way.
Personally, I believe we should follow our leaders only when they are following the Constitution. I don't have to follow them very much.
Just my two cents. If I say any more it will get political, and I can't do that.
Current Ride: 1995 K75 Standard
Past: 1978 Yamaha XS 750, 1976 BMW R60/6
But try to only follow orders if the "leaders" are honest and within the confines of he Constitution. As a Marine NCO you followed orders, did not question them, or you wound up receiving office hours or a court martial!
To answer your first question; no, I never considered moving back to the states. By the time that was an option I had a career as a teacher, a position in an orchestra, friends, and my own modest home in the country.
I don't think the caliber of politics or politicians is much better in Canada, though the countries are definitely different in political systems. We do have decent univeral health care that only now the US may get. I have dual citizenship in these two countries. Want to guess which one I chose to issue me a passport?
I hope none of this is too "political" for any of you or the mod's. If you disagree with anything in my two comments on this thread, I'm more than willing to consider your opinions.
On Veterans day it is great to honor all my fellow veterans.
As it is our duty to defend our country, it is also our duty to speak out about unnecessary wars as was Vietnam. As a veteran and a patriot we should not let our leaders send us into a war that we have no business being in. I saw enough of this in Vietnam.
Veterans For Peace has done a good job of making sure veterans from Vietnam, Iraq and Afhganistan are heard. This is a picture of me with the VFP flag.
Welcome home all vets.
Hoa Binh (Peace)
Vietnam '69 and '70
2012 R1200R classic