Back in the late '60s and '70s, those of us who served in the military were looked on by many with suspicion, and by some with outright hostility and hatred. Some called us 'Baby Killers' and murderers. Out crime? Serving in the United States Military during the time of the Vietnam War. The war had fallen out of favor with the public. Protests tied up the streets of big cities and the seats of power. Sit-ins were held on college campuses across this great nation. People burned flags and draft cards, and chants of "Hell no, we won't go!" were heard nightly on the news. Through it all, the servicemen and women kept their dignity and, in most cases, their cools. One thought ran through our minds: There is a price to paid for the freedoms that all the protestors enjoy, and that price has been paid by every member of the Armed Services, no matter what branch. Some paid much a much higher price than others, in blood and lives. Still, the name calling and the protests continued.
The Vietnam War ended in '74. There were no parades, no welcome homes. No one met us at the airports and commended us for a 'Job Well Done', or thanked us for our service; but it was OK, because all we wanted to do was get on with our lives and put the ugliness behind us. Many of us did. Many of us went on to successfully raise families and, in turn, see them start families of their own. For some, however, there were ghosts that haunted them throughout the decades. They saw the inside of mental institutions, and when the President closed them in the mid'80s, they saw shelters, drug addiction and madness. The call it PTSD now. Whatever you call it, it is an illness suffered by many veterans who could not put the horrors that they had seen behind them.
In the mid '80s, something happened. America started to feel guilty for the way that they had treated the war veterans. There were many 'Welcome Home' parades and events across the country. It was supposed to be an apology to the veteran for the shoddy way that they had been treated. It was a little late, but not unappreciated.
When the new Volunteer military went off to war during Operation Desert Storm in '91, the public enthusiastically supported them and called them heroes. Groups would meet returning troops at airports to thank them. They were saluted at Major league sports games, and recognized by the host's of the late night talk shows. They were saluted and toasted everywhere they went. It was as it should be for men and women who volunteered to go to war and keep their fellow citizens safe. It was a touching thing for this old Marine to observe. They are, after all, my brothers and sisters in arms, and I support them with all of my heart.
When we were attacked on September 11, 2001, there were no shortages of those who volunteered to help bring down the enemy. When President Bush called for the brave men and women to step up and track down these terrorists, the brave men and women volunteers did, and off to war they went. Off to Afghanistan and Iraq they went. They toppled Saddam Hussein in Iraq and were cheered. The President declared "Mission accomplished!" and the public loved the spectacle. In Afghanistan, they chased the Taliban from power and into the mountains. The US public loved it.
But then, the wars dragged on. Stories of US troops humiliating the POW's started to unnerve the public. Congress jumped on the opportunity to rant and rave and called for hearings. Meanwhile, people still welcomed the heroes home
Lately, however, there have been disturbing rumblings from both sides of the political spectrum. The fact that the military was now using drones to kill the enemy disturbed many.. as if someone actually piloting a plane in the air was any less fatal than the drones. The American Military's support was not as strong as it had been. They are still recognized at ball games and some are still met at airports, but not as much. Then, the Bradley Manning affair hit. Here we have an active duty soldier who took classified and secret documents and released them to Wiki leaks. This, dear reader, is treason. Yet there are those who, while enjoying the freedom of speech and all the freedoms in this country, there are those who call him a 'Hero' and a 'Whistle Blower.' He is neither. He is a traitor. He took an oath when he joined the military. He comes under the jurisdiction of the military courts, and the Uniform Code Of Military Justice.
Yesterday, he was found guilty of most of the charges and sentenced to 30 years of hard labor. Reading the reaction from some cut me to the quick. Some called the military "Blood thirsty". The military personnel are again starting to be called 'killers and murderers'... by both sides of the political spectrum. There are people building arsenals to go up against our own military to overthrow the government.
It angers me and breaks my heart to hear citizens of the United States, who enjoy the many freedoms that enable them to call protest and call names without fear of reprisal, call for civil war and the downfall of the government and the military because of talk of the NSA listening to their phone calls. Whether this is a fact or not has not even been determined. It angers me to see the brave men and women who act to protect this country, cursed and called names. This is history repeating itself. To those who think Manning is a hero, remember this: Those that want to destroy the US, and you with it, loved the secrets that this traitor released. The military needs secrets to keep you safe.
I want to say this to all would who like to see the military fall, and to those who would tear down this government. Most of you have never seen war up front and close, as I have, and I am telling you that these men and women are brave and they are putting there life on the line so that you won't have to lose yours. I hope that you never have to see a country torn by civil war. I hope that there will never come a time when anarchy reigns in the street of every town an village, because that will mean that you have gotten your wish, and the military will have been reigned in and rendered ineffectual. Then, you will wish that there was someone to protect you.
To all those who served and still serve, no matter what your political affiliation, I say "Semper FIdelis, comrades, and thank you for your continuing service." One day, I hope that wars are abolished. Until that day, I thank the forces that control fate for the United States Military men and women. And although I am a man of peace, I recognize the need for our military
Footnote: I tried to proof read this. However, I feel so strongly about this, that I probably missed several mistakes. Take it as a sign of my passion about this. Also, I have been called a Communist and a Liberal recently. Let's see what other names people who don't like my views can think of.
Thursday, August 22, 2013
Saturday, August 17, 2013
The following is my Blog on my Sensa Profile Page. I felt that I wanted to share it with everyone:
Still, I enjoyed smoking, and had no intention of quitting. Then, my wife was diagnosed with COPD, and there was no question that I had to quit, both so that she would quit, and that she would not be inhaling second hand smoke.
When I talked to my cardiologist and my Primary doctor about the weight gain, both told me that they would rather see me fat and not smoking, then thin and still smoking. Besides, they said, your weigh will level off and begin to drop once your metabolism adjusts to not having the nicotine.
Well, it didn't. I would say that my metabolism just said "My work is done here!" Packed up and left town. I didn't eat any more, but I didn't eat any less, either. It got to the point where just bathing every day was an effort. Despite the fact that my lungs were fine, I was always out of breath. My back, which has been bad from working as a telephone universal tech for years, was getting worse despite two surgeries. I could not stand for long, and my knees and hips were giving me fits. I then decided to look into weight loss surgery. I went to the seminars and had an interview and my BMI qualified me for the surgery, which Medicare and my secondary health insurance would pick up 80% of the tab for. It was the 7 other doctors that I had to see, plus the co-pays and tests that would cost me a small bundle. I got all the prescriptions for the docs, but in the meantime, I heard about Sensa and did a little research. I watched the good doctor's appearance on Dr. Oz, and researched his successes. I decided to give it a try, since the first couple of months were free. It seemed to be working, because I dropped down in weight. However, I still was not sure, because I had seen fluctuations in the past.
By the time of my July weigh in, there was no denying it. I had lost 16 pounds. I was ecstatic! I kept sprinkling and ignoring the call of the in-between meal hunger pangs, and ate a decent meal three times a day. I switched from a dinner plate to a dessert plate for my meals. I cut out most bread, except for the occasional sandwich on a Pita, and one slice of toast in the morning with coconut oil spread instead of butter to go along with my two egg breakfast. I allowed myself two spoonfuls of no sugar added Perry's ice cream at night. I still drink a couple of pots of coffee a day, as I have my whole life. I am not addicted.... I just love it, and always have.
Still, I was a bit apprehensive when I got on the scale for my August weigh in. First thing in the morning on August 16, 2013, I got on the scale. The dial whirled and eventually settled. 210! 210! It appeared that I had not lost another pound. I had not gained, either; but the thought that I had not lost at all in the preceding month deflated me. I told my wife, and she said not to be discouraged, that I had just plateaued for a bit, and that the weight loss would resume in a short time. This, she said, was normal. She had just gone through a remarkable weight loss herself, so I agreed to keep going and not give up.
Later on, I took my shower and groomed my goatee, doing my daily ministrations. Before I got dressed, I stepped on the scale again. The dial spun again, like my own personal wheel of fortune, and stopped on...205! 2----0----5! Two hundred and five pounds!!!! I could not believe my eyes. I got off of the scale, got down on my hands and knees (Something that would have been very difficult and caused me great distress just a few months ago) I checked the adjustment dial, making sure that the scale was on the money. It was, but I moved it anyway, and then zeroed the scale again. I got back on... the dial spun.... Two Hundred and Five pounds!! I don't know what had happened that morning, but I checked and re-checked again, and this was correct. I had now lost a total of 21 pounds! I posted that I had lost 20, just to be on the safe side, but I had lost 21 pounds in just three short months.
I have to tell you, I feel better. I can do normal things without huffing and puffing. My back pain, while still there, does not keep me from moving around freely. The same with my knees. My face and head, which just a couple of months ago looked like my neck(s) were in a straight line, no longer looked bloated and like a pumpkin. An added bonus: The rosacea which I have suffered from for years, is just about gone!
Sensa works! There is no doubt in my mind about that now. It's not cheap, but it's cheaper than surgery, and not dangerous and invasive. I love it, and will continue to use throughout my life. It's a beautiful thing!
I will check back with you all again next month.