I’m pissed. Upset. Angry. Irate. Irritated…
That list could go on for a while.. needless to say, something has got my ire up in a dander.
Here’s the thing. I keep reading about how this movie about Chris Kyle is coming under fire because it portrays a military member doing a job that these critics disagree with. Sadly, wasn’t it only a month or two ago a similar situation was occurring over our police force?
Am I against them having an opinion that goes against mine. No. Oddly enough, I fought for those people to have those rights. The same rights that allow people to burn my flag in an act of protest. The same rights that give me the right to disagree with your opinions also.
How did I fight for those rights? The same way my forefathers fought. I donned a uniform and wrote a check that was payable with my life. That’s right, I’m a veteran (big shock to anyone who knows me or has read my blog for any length of time, I know).
I enlisted into the United States Navy in 1989.
I made three 6 month deployments. One to the Med, one to the Persian Gulf, and one UNITAS*.
During my time in the Med, Kuwait was invaded by Iraq and I was part of the initial on-scene group that. Next, I went to the Persian Gulf a little under a year later, in support of Desert Storm, aboard the USS Stark, returning her for the first time to the seas where two Exocet missiles launched by an Iraqi piloted Mirage aircraft hit her and killed 37 men in 1987. During the UNITAS, I was part of a team that helped train and maintain foreign relations with our Southern American allies.
I spent another four years at a Naval bombing range, helping to train our pilots to drop ordnance on targets effectively.
This is a summary of who I am, once upon a time, but still a part of me.
When people attack the military, it hits very close to home. Especially when the people attacking it are the self-same people who refused to put the uniform on in the first place. I saw a hoodie the other day that said:
And for me that says it pretty well. Like I said, I wore that uniform to protect your rights, regardless of whether you agreed with the things we did or not. Whether you agree with the politics or not. Whether you see that I… we… do a job, following orders… or not. Whether you ever say thank you…
So, to my fellow brothers and sisters in arms, veterans and those currently putting your lives on the line, I salute you and say thank you for protecting my freedom. And to all you critics out there who think you deserve the right to bash or disparage the military… I’ll let Teddy Roosevelt say what I’m thinking, cause the boy nailed it. I double dog dare you to read it.
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” – Teddy Roosevelt
Med – Mediterranean
UNITAS-UNITAS are sea exercises and in port training involving several countries in North, South and Central America, conducted by the USA