Just Say Your Are Sorry!

Since Ken Burns released his newest documentary about the Vietnam War I have been following it up with some historic perspectives on the war.

I fought my way through 21/2 years in Vietnam and when I returned back to the US I became a staunch anti-war protester.

Over the years I have had many discussions with others about that war….some served others did not…..at one time some older gentleman told me that I need to apologize to the country for my activism.

I was taken aback and asked why should I apologize?

He told me that it was people like me that tore the country apart with all the protests to the point that the country was weakened by all the division.

My first reaction was…..BITE ME!

I said that I had nothing to apologize for and that he, a supporter of the war, should do it more than I.  Support sending in children to fight a bloody war that was NEVER meant to be won.

This event from my past came to m                                                                                                        ind after I read a piece on Common Dreams…..

How many times have you heard, or even said yourself, something like this:

It was beyond cruel what was done to Viet Nam vets. I protested the war but not the soldiers who’d been thru hell.

That’s a comment made on my Facebook page when I posted Jerry Lembcke’s very insightful review of Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s series, The Vietnam War. Lembcke points out that the series promotes the established narrative that for Vietnam vets, the experience of coming home to a “hostile” public was “more traumatic than the war itself.” As I will discuss here, Lembcke, a Vietnam veteran and Associate Professor Emeritus at Holy Cross College, has dedicated much of his life to countering and disproving that narrative.

Now take a close look at the above statement. I protested the war but not the soldiers who’d been thru hell. The implication is, of course, that while this person didn’t do it, others must have “protested the soldiers,” referring to the ubiquitous stories of soldiers and veterans being harassed, hounded, called baby killers and spat on by a variety of protesters and, as the stories usually go, “long haired hippies.” Actually, this particular comment was part of a string of responses to someone who claimed he was “urinated on while in uniform.”

Source: Vietnam War Protesters have NOTHING to Apologize For | By | Common Dreams

In hindsight I still see NO reason for me to apologize…I did what I felt is morally right.

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The Real Flag Outrage

About nonce a year of so for the last 50 years there has been something about the flag and how it is bad for society.  The latest is a “Trump Two Step” about the knee thing that was all the rage about a year ago….Trump had to find something to divert the attention of the media and the public so why not some made up societal disrespect.

There is a bigger story there than the Trump diversion……

The flag, the Bible, the cross, the ring, the badge, the collar… we are a country rife with symbols, literally wrapped and weighted with the pomp and pageantry of the many things we’ve chosen to identify our beliefs, our memberships and positions.

These symbols are designed to represent ideals, signify philosophies, advertise status, be unspoken statements. Those who wear, bandy, raise and wield them do so because they wish for their memberships, their affiliations, their support of the symbolized groups or ideals to be known.

“I’m a Christian. I’m a married person. I’m a priest. I’m a cop. I’m an American. I’m a…” and so on.

While many who subscribe to these symbols do so with authentic belief, honest dedication, and deep attachment to what’s being symbolized, not a day goes by when someone somewhere isn’t caterwauling about this or that symbol and how and why it should or shouldn’t be worn, waved, wielded or wasted. Given all the Sturm und Drang, we’d like to presume everyone involved understands what these symbols actually stand for. But there’s growing evidence to the contrary, particularly when the words and deeds of those defending those symbols contradict and sully their inherent message:

Source: The Real Flag Outrage? When Bigots And Liars Hide Behind Stars And Stripes | HuffPost

This is all too made up…..the only purpose it serves is to change the discussion when things get a bit a of a drag.

Kneel, touch the earth.

“Oh say can you see . . . ”

The anthem starts. I can feel the courage . . . of Colin Kaepernick, the (then) San Francisco 49ers quarterback who refused to stand for the national war hymn, not when one of the wars was directed at Americans of color. Occupying the public spotlight that he did, Kaepernick risked — and received — widespread condemnation. Rabid fans burned replicas of his jersey. I’m sure as he knelt that first time, as his knee touched the earth, he had a sense of what he was setting off.

This is patriotism.

Source: The Courage to Kneel – LA Progressive

Personally, I have no time for this type of game……I prefer to deal with problems head on and leave these types of things for those of lesser minds.

The Antifa of 1865

ANTIFA!  A term that has found a home in the MSM…..the protesters of the protesters….the group that took on the neo-Nazis in Virginia and made a nmje for themselves in the process…..the protests were put together because there was to be a removal of a statute of Robert E. Lee….and the “other side” showed up and all Hell broke lose…..as they say…..

Let history (you know damn well that there was a history lesson in there, right?) tell the tale…..

“Anybody who would trash Lee and laud Lincoln is either stupid as a post or just plain evil,” said a sage reader. This applies in spades to anyone who would laud the Radical Republicans of 1865, as one TV GOP blonde has recently, and asininely, done.

The Radical Republicans, if you can believe it, considered Abraham Lincoln a moderate (a bad thing, in their book). Lincoln successor Andrew Johnson these fanatics branded a reactionary (punishable by obstruction and impeachment).

Praised these days by the blonde-ambition faction of the Republican Party, the Radicals were stars of America’s own Reign of Terror over the South, at the end of the War Between the States.

Source: The Radical Republicans: The Antifa of 1865 – The Unz Review

Some things change others do not…..

Closing Thought–29Aug17

Adopt A Nazi!

You can adopt a tiger….or an elephant or maybe a whale….now there is a new twist to the concept……

The term neo-Nazis has had a bad couple of weeks…..it all started with the protests in Virginia….

Now a group is raising money for a specific purpose…..crowd funding has become the way of the future for raising the needed cash for this dream or that….and this one is very clever use of the cash raised……

More than 1,800 people have “adopted a Nazi” in the US, raising nearly $133,000 to help neo-Nazis and white supremacists “fund their own demise”.

The campaign, launched by the Jewish Bar Association of San Francisco (JBASF), invites individuals to donate money for every person planning to attend a right-wing rally scheduled for Saturday in the northern California city.

Source: ‘Adopt a Nazi’: How groups are countering neo-Nazis | USA | Al Jazeera

The Prague Spring–1968

1968 was a good year for history…..wars, protests, naval disasters, etc…….

Long before the Arab Spring there was the Prague Spring in 1968…..it was billed in the West as the Czechs attempt to throw off the bonds of communism and step into the light of democracy.

There were volumes written in support of this action here in the West….but was it about Communism and democracy?

On the morning of Aug. 21, 1968, Mr. William Teltscher realized that his trip to Czechoslovakia had ended before it really started. Being a descendant of a traditional wine-trading Jewish family from Mikulov, south Moravia, he decided to visit his native country for the first time since his family left Czechoslovakia in 1939 for England, escaping the Nazi furor. However, he landed in Prague’s Ruzyne airport only to see the tanks being unloaded from Soviet transport planes, so he turned around and left the country on the next plane for London.

He was apparently one of those who believed the Prague Spring might eventually lead to significant changes to the totalitarian system or at least give the citizens of Czechoslovakia the feeling that they are once more able to determine their country’s destiny. Like many other hundreds of thousands, he was deceived.

Source: Exploding the myth of Prague Spring | Prague Post

Once again history was not exactly as it has been painted by the media…..but we already knew that…..right?

The Molly Maguires

We are having our fair share of protests these days but if you look back in history we have always had our share of protests….both non-violent and violent alike.

One of those anarchic type groups that seldom gets any mention when history is mentioned is the Molly Maguires.

Louis Adamic’s history of the Molly Maguires: a secret society of Irish-born mine workers in the US who terrorised the exploitative mine bosses of the time.

In the US in the mid-19th century trade-unionism was tame and timorous. Most of the strikes ended disastrously for the labor organizations concerned. There were labor unions whose membership pledged itself to “avoid exciting topics.” Labor leaders, so called, were for the most part men who neither labored nor led: aspiring third-rate politicians and windy orators who had little capacity for understanding the new industrial forces as they affected the worker; or reformers and lopsided idealists, full of lovely vagaries and longings, who had drawn their original inspiration and their terminology from the writings of the utopian Socialists and the Brook-Farmers. They met in labor conventions to pronounce solemnly upon the nobility of toil and recite verses about the golden sweatdrops upon the laborer’s honest brow, which “shine brighter than diamonds in a coronet.”

Source: The Molly Maguires, 1850-1875 – Louis Adamic

Just another trip down memory lane in the Professor’s Classroom…..there is so much about the struggle of the American worker that seldom gets any attention….it should even if you do not agree with their tactics….it is still part of our national heritage.

They All Fall Down

It appears that we are once again ass deep in the civil rights thing from years ago….and as always we are re-fighting the Civil War….the thing now is that to ward off any possible source for protests governments are deciding to remove the statues of so-called “heroes” of the Civil War….you know people like Lee, Forrest, etc….

I read an article in the Federalist that made some goods points about this mash-up over monuments.

Initially well-intentioned, the movement for historical erasure is picking up steam and will soon be speeding out of control. We should use caution before sweeping too much of our history away from the public eye.

Source: If We Topple Every Statue Of An Imperfect Person They All Come Down

While  I agree that some of the statues should come down but not all of them…..history is history and even ugly history deserves its place.  There is a difference between history and heritage., although the PC crowd would have us believe they are one in the same.

If the monument celebrates a battle, a birthplace or a place of death then these should remain….but if it is a statue to celebrate a white guy that was pissed because he lost a war then it needs to go.

If the monument’s only purpose is hate then it needs to go down and soon.