"Amid growing controversy over procedures that exposed 10,000 veterans to the AIDS and hepatitis viruses, the Department of Veterans Affairs is now bracing against news that one of its facilities in Pennsylvania gave botched radiation treatments to nearly 100 cancer patients" (FNC).
This is how we repay the men and women who sacrificed so much to keep us safe?
Last night I met two friends at Dunkin' Donuts (it was either that or a late-night run to Wal-Mart . . . or maybe some snipe hunting or cow tipping here in Central PA), one of whom I haven't really seen since graduation. She spent the past year traveling to VAs across the country performing with a group. Even though she still can't tell you who fought in the Civil War and she still thinks Churchill said "The British are coming! The British are coming!," she has learned so much from simply talking with veterans before and after shows. History books only teach so much -- I have learned far more from simply listening to veterans than I ever did in a class. I'm glad that she was able to have this experience. Too often we forget about our veterans, we take for granted everything that we have. And yet, to an extent we should be grateful for the fact that we have so much to take for granted.
On Monday the family and I went to Olive Garden to celebrate both Father's Day and my dad's birthday. As I was enjoying my meal with my family, it dawned on me how eerie it is to be able to sit in a nice restaurant and enjoy a rather nice meal without having to worry about safety or anything that our military men and women worry about on a daily basis overseas. It's odd to be able to sit down at my laptop and type whatever I want on my blog and know that if my wireless goes down for some reason, I can mooch off of my neighbors, because some of them also have wireless Internet in their homes. Meanwhile, there's a war going on a few thousand miles away. How fortunate we are to have the fighting force we do, to have the men and women willing to take our places over there and keep us safe, in spite of our frequent ingratitude.