Iowa State Lecturer: Soldiers “creat[e] anti-American terrorists in the countries they occupy” and don’t deserve carepackages.
[Picture above is me talking to local villagers about their educational and potable water needs. If my lieutenant sees that picture, I swear this may have been the only time I wore my Red Sox hat outside the wire. Well, that might be a lie, but I swear I had the helmet somewhere.]
UPDATE: I will be on Fox and Friends tomorrow morning at 6:20 to discuss this issue. Also, he is a "lecturer" not a Professor, and I have altered the title accordingly. (Thanks to the tip from Mr. Foster below)
Here we go again.
Thomas Walker, a “lecturer in the intensive English and orientation program” at Iowa State University has gone the way of the Law Professor at Suffolk, and taken issue with attempts to send carepackages to deployed troops. I really wish it hadn’t been ISU as I have an affinity for the school because that is where my friend Past National Commander Rehbein spent the better part of his working life. And the reality is that no one school should be culpable for the actions of one individual. It amounts to a sort of “hecklers veto” where the school gets a black eye for the actions or statements of a single miscreant, while the good work of so many others is largely ignored. But so it goes.
Let’s look at what he has to say:
I read in Tuesday's Iowa State Daily that the College Republicans have begun collecting sundries for U.S. soldiers serving in Afghanistan and Iraq. Why? Doesn't the U.S. Army victual its soldiers? Don't their families send them yuletide goodies? Aren't GIs paid enough to buy what they need, and even what they want?
Yes, the army “victuals” its troops. In fact, we got a lovely assortment of MREs whenever we headed out. A true culinary classic is the spaghetti and meat balls. The sublime experience of eating pound cake in the pouring rain is enough to bring the owner of even the least discerning palate to tears. As I read his statement it conjured to mind the famous question of George C. Scott as Scrooge: “Are there no prisons? No work houses?”
You know why care packages sent from home mean so much? Is it because we were starving? Is it because we were too poor to afford our own food? No, because it meant something. Sure, I could get heaping portions of food from a Mermite, but when you know that someone cared enough to send food halfway around the world, the food nourishes not only the body, but the soul as well.
Some folks don’t have families to send them stuff Mr. Walker. Many of us don’t have an extensive family support mechanism when we deploy. Which is why groups like Soldiers’ Angels exist, and have mottos that encapsulate that:
May No Soldier Go Unloved
May No Soldier Walk Alone
May No Soldier Be Forgotten
Until They All Come Home
"As Republicans we believe in charity," stated Jeremy Freeman, a member of the College Republicans. Donating toiletries, boxed and canned foods, socks and beanies to U.S. soldiers who can already deodorize themselves, who eat better than the poorest Americans and who are gallantly garbed, is an eleemosynary travesty.
“Gallantly garbed?” Really? Are you $#!^^ing me? Let me tell you about my gallant garb. My wardrobe was digitzed and mono-chromatic. Sure, it is trendy among homeless folks you see with cardboard signs, but seldom if ever do I see Giselle Bundchen strutting the catwalk outfitted in a lovely ensemble of digital pattern BDU’s. And our boots are not the Uggs sold to us by her touchdown munificent husband. Also, our accessories are indeed functional, if not downright alluring. Nothing says “I’m ready to party” like a PRC radio, a couple of mortar rounds, and a sleeping bag that hasn’t been washed in months. Love the use of SAT words though, it just stresses to us uneducated grunts how smart you are, more so (clearly) than I am. In fact, based only on your consummate grasp of diction, I would move that we set up some form of Oligarchy centered on folks who can use “eleemosynary” properly in a sentence. In the farrago of human imbecility, typified by the profligate galimatias of useless pontification, you are truly the beacon on the hill. (There, I also used big words, can I join your club now?)
Necessities should be doled out to people who really need them and who might get them if not for the hundreds of billions of dollars being funneled to the Pentagon in the greatest squandering of money on the planet. If anything, Republicans should sympathize with veterans struggling to find employment, a challenge that may daunt the discharged soldier, who might wish he had reenlisted. Soldiers are to Republicans as fetuses are to them: prized. But once out of the womb-like army, Republican solicitude for hapless veterans goes where extracted zygotes go.
There are many of us who do work to help those veterans, and here at The American Legion we have 2.5 million of them all working to do just that. Not sure how this became a partisan issue, except for your obvious antipathy towards the group trying to send these packages. But again, I think this paragraph was meant more to show how smart you are, and less to make an actual point.
"We get to show the troops we still appreciate what they're doing for us," said another College Republican. What are they doing for us? Nothing. But against us they're doing a lot: creating anti-American terrorists in the countries they occupy. Said the same College Republican, "It can't be fun to be away from your family for the holidays. As if American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan had been conscripted? They chose to leave home.
Ah yes, the old saw about how US Troops do nothing but create enemies. Never mind the hundreds of thousands of dollars that US Troops pour into aiding the citizens of those countries we are in, nor trying to make it so little girls can go to school without fear of being killed. No, our true legacy is just creating terrorists. As someone who did in fact volunteer, and who would do so again, I can second the emotion that being away from home on the holidays is (as they say in the infantry) The Suck. But, when you look at the things you are able to accomplish, it makes it worth while.
Here for instance is how my unit (3-116 INF, 29 ID Light) once spent a holiday, look at all the little terrorists we were creating….
Why do Republicans care so much about the military? Because the military-industrial complex is dear to their simplistic laissez-faire fantasies: a bottom-line patriotism that excludes the people at the bottom.
I would say that Democrats care about the military as well, and most the Democrats I know (my extensive family for instance) would dispute that supporting the troops is a partisan activity. Either way, for every one of you that says something asinine like this letter, there are 10 more great Americans who will leap in to fill the void. So, as they say in the army “lead, follow or get the hell out of the way.” Frankly, I think you will lead 10 people that wouldn’t be as likely to send a carepackage to do so, and for that I thank you, even if that clearly wasn’t your intent.
Soldiers’ Angels has lists of soldiers, airmen, coasties, marines and sailors who need adopting, because not everyone has someone back home to lift them up when they are feeling down. The best way to show Thomas Walker just how idiotic he is is to reach out to one of our folks downrange, and ensure they know that they shall not go unloved.