Men and women are not “heroes” just because they put on a U.S. military uniform, and they don’t want to be called heroes. They simply want the rights and benefits that their government promised them when they signed up with a recruiter.
What they don’t want is a government that forces them to fight unnecessary imperial wars of aggression in the Third World, then can’t provide long-term care for the wounded and traumatized when they come home. What use is honoring yesterday’s fallen if we don’t provide for those who are falling today – falling into unemployment, depression, addiction, suicide and despair?
The long road of healing has just begun. No one will pay the cost but you and me. We can begin by electing representatives in 2014 who will raise taxes, not for weapons but for veterans benefits.