Yesterday was Veterans Day. I attended the groundbreaking ceremony for the Vietnam Memorial to be constructed in Bayview Park. I am glad I did. It was a proud and happy experience.
I would estimate about 400 in attendance. Of that number, roughly 150 Vietnam veterans. Vietnam veterans are in their 60s and early 70s today. Most were attired Key West style. I am sure most would have worn their uniforms if they still fit. Many had pinned to their tee or sport shirts medals they received for their Vietnam efforts. Their heads covered by their former military cap or a VFW cap.
Vietnam was a bad war from the public’s perspective. No one liked the war. It was extremely unpopular. Protests galore. All ages, all stations in life.
Parents did not want their children dying in a war they could not understand. Many parents took their college children and sent them off to Canada. The U.S. still had the draft at the time. Those that went to Canada preferred to be wanted criminals. Anything not to go to Vietnam.
When the soldiers returned from their Vietnam tours of duty, there were no crowds to welcome and cheer them. Their return consisted of insults and being spit upon. These returning soldiers never were rewarded with glory for their efforts.
In recent years, the Vietnam stigma has been removed. Vietnam warriors are welcomed and respected everywhere. The Key West Vietnam Memorial such a recognition.
The Vietnam vets at Bayview yesterday appeared proud. They carried themselves in a proud fashion. When the Star Spangled Banner was played, their salutes were sharp. They were also a happy group. I was happy for them. I was proud to be with them and share their joy for the Memorial soon to be built.
My blog talk radio show last night. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.
My discussion of a new Princeton study drew the most response. The Princeton study concluded American democracy no longer existed. It had slipped away from the people. Replaced by an oligarchy. Rule by the wealthy elite.
The question for you and I becomes…..How do we get back to the American way of life as we knew it?
Enjoy your day!