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PTSD: Don’t repeat mistakes of Vietnam war

Letter by Susan R. Cornwall, Puyallup on March 16, 2012 at 9:11 am with 27 Comments »
March 16, 2012 9:54 am

Since we were lied into these never-ending wards, I have been questioning whether all the knee-jerk patriots with their yellow “I Support the Troops” stickers on their cars would be so “supportive” when the wounded warriors returned.

We are about to find out. We have the recent debacle at Madigan Army Medical Center about the soldiers having to fight for benefits for their diagnosis of post-traumatic stress syndrome and wonder why so few of them seek help. Really?

As for the massacre in Afghanistan, we know little about the soldier who committed this act, but I have been waiting for the name-calling to begin. Our troops have been overextended for 10 years, sent back for tour after tour. Many have sent back into battle after traumatic brain injuries, and thousands suffer from PTSD.

I was an Air Force brat, hold no animosity towards the military and I have experience working for the Veterans Affairs system. The VA was overextended prior to these wars.

I read online comments by people upset by the financial cost of caring for these soldiers, and the name-calling and disbelief that PTSD is a real condition has begun.

This country failed the veterans from the Vietnam war, thousands of whom live in our state. They came back damaged and continue to need care. I have heard the label of “another crazy Vietnam vet” enough to fear that the Iraq/Afghanistan soldiers will face the same animosity and dismissal.

Shame on this country if we allow it to happen again.

Leave a comment Comments → 27
  1. sumyungboi says:

    Then do something besides writing letters complaining about your country. Open your wallet and load up


  2. LornaDoone says:

    The government of the United States of America OWES the veterans. Non-profits are nice and all, and some of them take too much off the top, but this is not an issue to be outsourced to anyone. Americans need to quit passing the buck and make damned sure that our elected officials are not balancing the checkbook on the backs of our veterans.

    Eliminate oil subsidies and put ALL of that money in veterans benefits.

    Then we’ll talk about donations to non-profits.

    As to wounded warrior, from the BBB rating:

    Public awareness 22,784,679
    Adaptive sports 1,760,879
    Benefit service 1,395,878
    Alumni association 958,984
    Soldier ride 955,984
    Veterans policy 724,951
    WWP packs 651,598
    WWP outdoors 646,522
    Patient/family support 596,969
    Transition training academy 550,271
    Combat stress recovery 510,384
    TRACK 463,628
    Warriors to work 340,780
    Peer mentoring 278,672
    Total Program Expenses: $32,620,179

    68% for “public awareness”? That leaves only 32% for programs. Sorry, bad investment.

    Get Congress off their collective posteriors and quit cheating those who put their lives on the line.

  3. sumyungboi says:

    Yes, there’s no sense in _you_ helping out, when the federal government should simply collect more taxes from “the wealthy” for the cause. Of course, the government is much more efficient when it comes to “taking a little off the top”.

  4. LornaDoone says:

    What good is a non-profit that spends 68% of it’s annual on “public awareness”?

    That’s not putting benefits in the hands of the veterans that need them.

    Veterans don’t need icing on the cake, they need flour and water.

  5. LornaDoone says:

    The link to the disabledveterans.org story talks about a $4 billion cut by Bachmann and the GOP.

    Now imagine this:

    “Mar 01, 2012 · In New Hampshire, President Obama called on Americans to contact their representatives in Congress and demand a vote to end $4 billion in subsidies.”

    Look where the $4 billion is available.

    Poor wealthy Americans wouldn’t get touched one cent.

  6. sumyungboi says:

    I wonder how much money would be in those other columns without the initial ad blitz? Which will assuredly be decreasing somewhat since it began.

  7. LornaDoone says:

    Non-profits have little to no problem getting pro bono advertising.

    Spending 68% of your annual to tell people about the great stuff you are going to do for veterans is a sure way of losing donors. Usual budgets are about 15% for administration and that would include direct costs for public awareness over and above pro bono donations.

  8. LornaDoone says:

    According to their website, Wounded Warriors was founded (by their current CEO) in 2003.

    The operating budget I posted is from 2010.

    We are not talking “start up” initial ad blitzes

  9. sandblower says:

    I wonder how much he pays himself.

  10. sumyungboi says:

    I had not heard of the Wounded Warriors Project until within the last year, one anecdote, but there you are, nevertheless.

    And noted is the fact that two leftists loathe a charity that helps wounded veterans.

  11. concernedtacoma7 says:

    Good point. Rather than pointing out a charity they ‘approve’ of, they make veterans a political tool.

    Fisher House is another option.

  12. tellnolies says:

    A better, more direct, solution was offered, it just doesn’t fit with lousy fare ideology.

  13. concernedtacoma7 says:

    There are 2 Fisher Houses in WA alone. How smart do you feel now, tough guy?



    And many of these charities go above and beyond what the govt offers, or should offer within reason (like assisting the family’s travel, i.e. FH). And nice that you ask 50.5% of citizens to support the wounded, since the other half pays nothing.

    And in all your calls for higher taxes are incredibly selfish. You operate in a cash based business, most under the table. Selfish and pathetic.

  14. LornaDoone says:

    I see, Fisher Houses all over the US, or at least a lot of them. I wonder why they haven’t registered with BBB for their non-profit rating. (501c3)

    Let me check the one that did.

    Hmmm….BBB has different information than earlier today. It now says:

    Your search for – “fisher house foundation” – did not match any Charity Reports.

    It could be that the didn’t register because they don’t meet the BBB criteria. Maybe too much administrative overhead, or an unwillingness to offer up their financial data.

    Oh gawd. Fisher House isn’t a charity. No wonder.

    By law, there is no charge for any family to stay at a Fisher House operated by the Department of Veterans Affairs; and Fisher House Foundation uses donations to reimburse the individual Fisher Houses operated by the Army, Navy, and Air Force. No family pays to stay at any Fisher House!

    Making donations to the Department of Defense and complaining about taxes? This is ripe. Thanks for the laughs, CT7. LMAO

  15. concernedtacoma7 says:

    Laughing at wounded vets and their families. All class, Mr Nos.

    Saving this one

  16. LornaDoone says:

    I’m still laughing at Mr “NoNewTaxes” making donations to the Federal Department of Defense.

    It’s smart to check out where you are donating money before you do it.

  17. The number and percentage of veterans holding federal office continues to decrease with each Congress. The 112th Congress (January 2011) has 90 veterans (90/435) in the House of Representatives and 28 (28/100) in the Senate. Expect the budget slashers to take it out on the veterans.

    Already the Republican agenda includes stopping the Department of Veterans of Affairs from designating ‘presumptive’ illnesses. Their agenda would require the veterans to make a direct nexus between any illness and their service. How would a Vietnam veterans be able to demonstrate a nexus between Agent Orange and illness? How would Gulf War veterans demonstrate a nexus between Gulf War Syndrome and illness? Depleted uranium munitions and future illnesses? Radiation exposure and atomic bomb tests?

    Keep in mind only 1% of the population is making sacrifices by serving in the military. In World War II fourteen million served out of a population of 140 million.

    Once the current wars are over or fought with drones and special ops, expect the public to forget the vet.

    I worked for the federal government and had a supervisor state right in front of me she/he would not hire a veterans because they’re unbalanced. Just give them a courtesy interview and pass over them. Yeah, for veterans preference.

  18. I’m thinking that donations to IAVA would be better spent than donations to Wounded Warrior Project.

  19. LornaDoone says:


    A MUCH better use of funds. Only 22.5% administrative

    Also there is a huge difference in gross revenues of the two programs. I’m betting that wounded warriors is getting corporate funding, but doesn’t seem to manage that resource well.

  20. sumyungboi says:

    Then donate to them, don’t talk about it. People volunteered to serve their country, went off to war, and came back gimpy in some cases. I don’t care what charity you donate to, no one does, but it’s our duty and our responsibility as Americans to take care of them. Service people and veterans are my brothers and sisters, and when they hurt, we all hurt somewhat, don’t we?

  21. LornaDoone says:

    As long as my donation staves off the possibility that you won’t have to pay 5 cents more in taxes to make sure that those vets are taken care of?

    You got it. My check is off today, as well as an email to my missing congressperson telling them to take care of vets, not oil companies.

  22. concernedtacoma7 says:

    Donating to these non-profits or straight to the DoD is a way for 49.5% who enjoy our freedom but pay nothing to contribute.

    You, LDnos, are the only one here being cheap and petty. You insult the service at any opportunity. Do not pretend to care about Servicemen and women. That is a lie.

    The ‘I support the troops but not the war’ line is BS. You judge Servicemen for participating and really only hate freedom.

  23. sumyungboi says:

    Thanks lorna, you’re a good person for contributing to charity. I mean that.

  24. LornaDoone says:

    I’m a good person for not complaining about paying taxes.

  25. CT7 and Sum – why should our wounded veterans have to relay on charities?

  26. LornaDoone says:

    amen, xring

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