In a few days another Memorial Day Salute will come and go. Most of the nations citizens do-not celebrate this date or any-other, that honors the living or the dead from all the endless wars this country is always involved (fighting & dying) in.
This long week-end would prove that the average American doesn't give a fiddlesticks about the War-Making-Machine, or the humans who are used to run the machine, that, in the end, destroys it own. (ref: Agent Orange). Citizens are tired of the glorification that surrounds our military dead and some find it fake, if not totally strange.
Yesterday, at the height of my war, fifty years ago, a service-man was buried without the fanfare. Their were no lines of cycles with all the flags or, firetrucks/ladder-truck holding a huge American flag between them, or Boy-Scouts lining highways. It was enough to honor our dead with great-tears, mourning and good food. Today our tears don't carry the same weight, showmanship is the order of the day. We The People grow weary of death being thrown in our faces, daily. The Vietnam War was the first war that we transported our dead by 707's back to the world instead of burying them where they fell.
May 25, 2019, Saturday, Jacksonville National Cemetery, Memorial Day, weekend.
Wasn't hot yet and light winds made for a comfortable morning, at least the morning started out very mild, perfect for my first-ever Memorial Day Service. That's right, my first, and be it known, there a lot of Veterans who do not get involved in 'public-anything' to do with Vietnam or any other war. But, I made a decision, I would see for myself if I had missed anything, in all those fifty-years. Also, I just recently had my truck wrapped in celebration of my new book,"Noble Canine", and wanted to see the effect around a gathering of Veterans.
But, own a serious side, I have a working hypothesis which is the reason for this blog entry. Most Veterans will not agree and argue tell they're blue in the face, but I'll tell you right off, I was right.
Here is a little of what I saw, felt and experienced on Saturday, my first ever event. The service begin at 10:00 on the button. A Navy Brass Ensemble provided the music, and incredible it was. You may not know this, but Armed Forces musicianship is off the charts, good. The six musicians in this small ensemble were excellent and entertaining.
A good start, but as the humans began to talk, everything went south.
I chocked up when 'the Colors' were presented. I got very upset with the humans presented as dignitaries, who began being important and dignified. Thank God I can remove my hearing-aids when I choose to shut-down. The only Woman on the stage was from the VA and her topic was a new VA Clinic being built somewhere in America, and was being named after one of the first KIA's in Vietnam. Her work at the VA centers around 'approving or disapproving claims. Isn't that special!
She's got nerve showing her face in public.
That office has a lot of death on their hands and conscience. Brutal denials of Agent Orange claims, not just for Veterans only, but the families too, they suffer. Agent Orange has been killing millions of people worldwide. Before I get carried away, one last thought about Agent Orange. AO and GMO are kissing cousins. Planet Earth is in grave danger of not be able to support life, and it has nothing to do with 'climate change'. Chemical and Oil Kartels are killing the planet with government enforcement. Limited Liability? no, more like NO LIABILITY.
I was grateful that the service lasted for just one-hour.
The human talking heads made it boring, but the speeches where short and sweet. Again, I choke up as the Color Guard leaves the stage to retire the flags. I choke up as three volleys are fired, twenty-one gun salute. I choke up as Taps sounds and, finally I realize how grateful I am to not being honored this day, and to be alive, is a good thing. I will not take part in another Memorial Day service. Instead, join me and have a chili-dog.
My working hypothesis
Between 200-300 participant showed up for this service. There are over 15,000 graves and each one had a flag and a rose. The community helps out, Boy Scouts did their part, but I was disappointed at the small turnout. As I scan the crowd under the tent, I was having a hard time counting up to 300 people. More likely only 250 people. Where was the thankful nation? You remove old Veterans and new Veterans and family members from the total number present and there is little, NO, tell it true, mostly, NO representation of our Nations citizen. This should hurt me to my very soul, it doesn't, well then? maybe I should be 'really upset'. Not falling for guilt trips, from either side. Time for the last EarthArmy to saddle-up.
Finally I have to ask??! What do G.I.s die for? Freedom, really?? Define Feedom?!!
"Your-Freedom is not worth Agent Orange!!"