First a bit of history.
I came home from Viet Nam in 1971 after having served for 9 years on four aircraft carriers in 4 oceans. I wont detail them all here for that has nothing to do with my point. Just for reference, my Father served in WWII and Korea. My son plans to enter the Air Force after college. Our family “gave at the office”. With that in mind let me make a few points for which I fully expect some flack.
I find the current craze of “Thanking Servicemen” for their service a little disingenuous. If someone attempted to thank me for my service I would probably say something like; “Thanks but give something back-go join up or do the Peace Corps or Public Health Service”. A bit of advice: if you are going to say thanks at least find a guy that has been shot at. In my nine years I was never shot at unless you characterize a 500 pound bomb falling off the wing of a F-4 Phantom just three feet over my head as being shot at. Those bombs don’t arm themselves until a small propeller on the bomb twists off the arming wire long after it is airborne and way far away from me in my ET shop near Radio Central.
Performing service to America via Armed Services is decidedly a two way street. Confused kids coming out of high school with no immediate prospects can find a home and an education within the services. Its a wonderful way to grow up a little, get an education, make a career and learn to feed a family. It is not altruistic as we tend to think of when visions of WWII’s immediate threat to the country comes to mind. We have not had an immediate threat to the country since WWII and that judgement includes 0911. That was a one shot wonder and I refuse to dig a foxhole for that sort of attack. So in essence, giving a little gets one a lot IMHO by joining in the service.
I learned a trade, I grew a little and I gave a little back for the pleasure of getting a lot. No thanks necessary, thank you very much. Your country needs your help: pay your taxes, join a service and thank your fellow citizens that way.Give a little back friends.
Thanks for reading my Blog. Best, Chas W5PG