Thursday, November 10, 2011

When Veterans Cry

(Warning: This is not just a Veteran’s Day message but an everyday message for all Americans!)

Thank you for your service.  This statement goes out to all active, Guard, Reserves, and retired veterans.  You deserve so much more than a thank you.  Although many of you smile when you hear, “thank you for your service” and appreciate the small token or gesture of gratitude; you know you need more than a thank you.  What you need is support and promises kept.  There are many veterans crying on the inside and some on the outside. 

Now don’t get it twisted, America’s veterans are the strongest and most mentally tough individuals in the world, nevertheless, sometimes the actions of others do hurt.  It is the people that you care about the most that usually end up hurting you the most.  Veterans love this country and they have proved that to all Americans yet, they get short changed.  Many have disabilities that are physical and mental.  Many managed to serve and escape without any injuries, but still have sacrificed time with family, dreams and aspirations just to mention a few.  There are countless men and women who have given the ultimate sacrifice; drive by any veteran cemetery.  Most important at one point all have agreed to fight and die for America.  All military personnel have raised their hand and affirmed to whatever this country has asked them to do.  But those that are still here need that gratitude turned into real action.  

Veterans cry when promises are broken.  Veterans were promised free medical for a lifetime of service; but that hasn’t been true in years.  Although veterans are able to receive medical service at the VA hospital for service-connected disability, veterans may have to wait 1-2 months for an appointment.  Because of the continuous erosion of benefits for the men and women of the Armed Forces after leaving the service, many rely on VA hospital facilities.  Just when veterans may have thought things couldn’t get any worst, here come the budget cuts.  Those cuts instigate hiring freezes at most VA facilities that support veterans, so vacant positions at the VA hospital cannot be filled.  Imagine a four hour wait at the X-ray department due to staffing.  Imagine having medical benefits that you can’t get to, because there are not enough medical personnel.  Do veterans deserve this type of service?

It is shameful that Americans have to be reminded once a year of the worth and sacrifice of veterans.  Veterans should not have to plead for earned benefits and respect.  Veterans deserve so much more.  Please continue to thank veterans for their service but go one step further by speaking up on their behalf every day.  Everyday a veteran needs help.

Go fly the flag and forward this article to all veterans, families of veterans and those that need to be reminded just how important veterans are to their way of life (everybody).  Veterans have already taken one for the team (Team America), they didn’t cry during their service for this country don’t make them cry when they return home America.

A toast to my military family wherever you might be in the world.  God Bless You!