Your time in Iraq makes you a threat to society: Andrew Chambers at TEDxMarionCorrectionalSalon 2013:
Damn. What a sad story. Oh my gosh, my heart goes out to Andrew.
It’s a travesty what’s happening to people in the military and once they come back home. We need to be listening to their stories, because our tax dollars are supporting a fucked up way of being that’s harming folks, and once they’re back on U.S. soil we act like we don’t care what happens to them. But to train someone to be so cold, in that context may serve for their protection, but then to bring them home and expect them to just revert back automatically and seamlessly to civilian life — it’s an unproductive pipe dream and nothing more. They suffer and the V.A. hospitals from what I’ve read don’t appear to give barely a fuck about them. Many are winding up, since the Vietnam War especially, tangled up in the criminal justice system once they arrive back in the U.S. and don’t receive the help they need.
This is why I choose to support the organizations Iraq Veterans Against the War and Veterans For Peace, two of the few groups that give a damn about what our soldiers are going through. May others look into these organizations as well.
We need to be listening to what these individuals are saying, because they’re unfortunately being hosed and mistreated, yet they remain our brethren whether we care to see them or not. Because they succumbed to the government’s propaganda does not make them our enemies. Young people get fleeced into that going down that path, but how can they know really what they’re signing up for? They can only imagine, but unfortunately the reality is seriously devastating for those stationed in the war zones in the Middle East. They signed up attempting to protect the rest of us, and for that I do very much appreciate their level of commitment and selflessness (or that at least plenty do posses, though not all — some have different agendas altogether but that’s a separate topic for another time). And they are rewarded how? Largely ignored until our justice system deems them unfit to live amongst the rest of us. It’s terribly sad what we have going on here.