The political show of support for veterans is often not matched by support for the foundational American beliefs for which veterans are fighting. Then veterans go to VA facilities in which more effort is spent manipulating appointments than on actually caring for combat-wounded veterans.
Earlier this month, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill to honor service members killed while serving their country.
According to the press release:
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today [July 3rd 2014] signed legislation to rename portions of the state highway system and bridges in honor of veterans groups and service members who died while protecting their country. Portions of state roads in Allegany, Erie, Nassau, Niagara, and Ulster Counties have now received new names. In addition, bridges in Putnam and Suffolk Counties have been renamed.
While this is a noble action to preserve their names, the cause they fought for is ignored. It’s not wrong to honor a veteran who has given the ultimate sacrifice by naming a bridge in his honor. It is far greater to share with students in our public schools lessons in patriotism that will help future generations embrace the beliefs that call forth young men and women to defend freedom and our nation. The shallowness of naming a bridge for a deserving veteran will come in 10 or 20 years when the children in the school nearby have no idea who he was, why he fought, and why he died.
There is a dissonance between this true way to honor veterans and the dishonor that has been perpetrated by the recent abuses at the VA. If the political system gave the needs of veterans and military families the kind of attention given to preferred voting blocs — real support and not just the assumption that someone else will take care of them — America’s shameful treatment of veterans could have been addressed long before now.
Enough is enough. It’s time for America to start treating our veterans with the care and dignity they deserve. We need to start by electing leaders to office that will make fixing the broken down VA system a top priority. Too many veterans have died on American soil after suffering through living hell overseas because our own government is too broken down, and too incompetent, to help them. This is a black mark on America that can never be erased. It’s gone on far too long, and has cost far too many lives. We must honor veterans by teaching what America stands for, not just watered-down politically correct history lessons.
VA does not need more money. They’ve been given more and more every year, even as they end each year with more than they need.
Congress and the White House need to dismantle the bureaucracy, making every employee accountable, starting with the heads of regional offices. If every employee were accountable to the taxpayers rather they to their federal employee union, most of the other problems would fix themselves.
But clearly, if money were the issue, there would be plenty to go around. Just today, FoxNews reported that the government spent $200G to study “gender bias” on Wikepedia. Maybe if they took all the money they waste on junk and spent it on fixing down the broken VA system we wouldn’t be here.
They took care of us on the battlefield, it’s time that we take care of them on the home front, and show that America truly does care about our veterans.