Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Throwing Medals

I remember vividly, as a sophomore in high school, watching the soldiers throwing back their medals in Washington back in 1971. It was an event that took place in April, and I watched it with other kids my age at a friend's house. These men and women realized they'd been duped by our government into fighting a war that couldn't be won. I was proud of them.

Fast forward to May of 2012; a full 41 years later. I just finished watching "Democracy Now!", where veterans at a protest of the NATO Conference in Chicago did the same thing the other day. When I was a sophomore I'm sure I didn't cry as I watched it on TV. As a grown man in his mid 50's, I had my own permission to this time.

There were only 45 vets who participated in this display of the hatred of war, and all that goes along with war. They spoke of the civilians killed. They spoke of the harm that came to themselves. They spoke of the way women in the military were mistreated. They spoke of the lies told to them. Their message was as loud to me now, as the thousands back in '71. And if I remember correctly, what happened back then was the beginning to the end of that war. May history repeat itself.

No comments: