Usually I would have no question about what cause I would throw myself behind. My first thoughts go to what I am most passionate about, which includes two of the most controversial topics: abortion and capital punishment. I have no problem stepping on people’s toes and am not scared to hurt people’s feelings, which I’m sure I would. I have chosen, instead of being a “pot-stirrer” to look a little bit deeper into myself and find something more than my usual argument.
So…what cause would I throw myself behind?
Ladies and Gents, this is a cause very close to my patriotic yet civilian heart. As I’ve mentioned before I have quite the number of family members serving our Armed Forces. The most prominent branch is the United States Marine Corps, but we have a couple other branches sprinkled in the mix.
Sure, we have come a long way from how our men were treated when they came back from Vietnam, but our men and women of the military, I feel, are still getting the short end of the stick.
Here are just a couple things I see wrong with the stance the USA has towards the armed forces:
1) It is okay for a professional sport’s player or celebrity to make more than someone who is willing to die for this country, literally. I don’t mean just a couple hundred or thousand either. I mean really, it’s pitiful in comparison to even the least paid position in sports. For example, the Tight End on a professional NFL team makes roughly 860,000 DOLLARS a YEAR. (I don’t even want to talk how much “low paid” actors make. The lowest paid actors in Hollywood are still making millions.) Juxtapose that to a FOUR STAR GENERAL who has to serve a minimum of 38 YEARS to make 230,000 A YEAR. Do you see where I’m going with this? I might just be a modest law secretary but I am also a proud citizen of this country, and an even prouder relative of some of those men who have put their life on the line, and I think this is an outrage. One of the highest and most respected ranks the in the military makes 3 times less than the lowest position of a NFL team member. Disgusting.
2) It’s okay for groups like the Westboro Baptist Church to protest not only homosexuals and other religions, but the funerals of our dead servicemen. The Westboro “Baptist Church”, protests against the troops and show up shouting obscenities at their funerals. Their website address is http://www.godhatesfags.com. Does that say anything about their morals as “Christians”. That brings me to the point that, yes; I meant to put the quotations around Baptist Church, because in my heart I don’t think these animals qualify. They are not Christians; they are evil incarnate and are allowed to get away with it under the protection of the First Amendment. I wonder if they realize that the rights they are counting on to keep their assess out of jail is what the very people they are protesting died to protect. The irony…it kills me.
Side note: I just came to the conclusion this topic might be offensive and somewhat of a “pot stirrer” itself. Oops.
Anyways…3) There is a disease that runs rampant in the military although it is usually swept under the rug. It’s taboo. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. What some people call being weak is another person struggling to survive. My oldest brother, closest cousin, and partner have all completed tours to Afghanistan. They all, thank God, came back without any appendages missing, even though they watched as good friends lost them. Their stories are not mine to tell, but what I have witnessed is the heartbreaking sob of a man who is haunted by untouchable demons, the drowning in alcohol to blackout so as not to be visited by memories in their dreams, the struggle to fit in after coming back home from war. I know as only an outsider can what PTSD looks like, and simply put…what it looks like is hell. Watching the struggles the beautiful men in my life, and their buddies, deal with is like watching someone fall overboard on a huge vessel. You want to do anything and everything you can to help them stay alive so you throw them life float after life float, but you can’t do anything really substantial. In the end it is up to their own will to survive, and besides the little help you can offer, the only thing you can do is watch. I feel in my heart that these warriors, these avenging angels, need support. I know there is some out there, but most people roll their eyes when they hear someone say they have PTSD, or they treat them as though they have a contagious disease.
These are just three examples of why I would hurl myself into trying to make these men and women’s lives easier. Even just more fair would suffice. Their sacrifice and courage is not met equally. I know you can’t really put a price tag on that sort of thing, but it has to be worth more than a game on TV. If I had more time in my day to do whatever I wanted, I would take some time to advocate for those who provide me that liberty. The problem with Syria is coming to a head and I know many men and women are preparing themselves for the worst-making sure they are ready to stand in the face of war. While they do this I will go shopping for groceries, watch my favorite TV show, Supernatural, and sleep warmly in my apartment curled up to the man I love. I can do all this because they, our heroes, both fallen and lucky enough to survive, have sacrificed everything. If there is one cause worth pursuing, it is to give those who survive, and those who are willing to put their faces toward our enemies a more wholesome future to look forward to.