I take care of a WWII vet. What does Santorum do?
I take care of an 89 year old World War Two Veteran. Yes, I moved in to his house, and I do the driving, the cooking, some of the cleaning, the gardening, repairing and whatnot that must be done around a house. I did this because he is a good friend of mind. And I promised him, when he was 80 years old, that I would do this when the time came. Two years ago that time came. Now it’s worse; the wheel chair arrived today. Yes, he’s fading; he shall not last long. I shall watch him fade away, and I shall be sad.
Yes, he’s a gay man – who gets a daily recounting of all my wanderings around the internet in defense of our people.
Yes, he was honorably discharged. He enlisted “for the duration” as it was called. Yes, he never saw a day of combat or hardship – but played piano at the Officer’s Club in San Diego, at first, later in Annapolis. Yes, he was a Navy man through and through.
It was also certainly apparent to anyone with a brain he was gay – take a look at pictures of him in his Navy uniform and one does not need to be a rocket scientist or trained psychologist to see reality.
So I stay here at his home of 36 years and will endeavor to keep him in his own place – and off the public dime – until such time as is absolutely necessary. Frankly, I wish him to just go to sleep and not wake up. Time will tell, and the Lord only knows what is in store for him.
But my family is filled with such stories – my younger brother, a veteran of the Air Force himself – is beginning to help with my father – now past 82 years of age. And so my brother will tend my father – Veteran for Veteran – as if, perhaps, in a foxhole, as well, life is like a foxhole and one should assist those there with you.
And my Uncle George, my father’s older brother – a Coast Guard veteran of WWII – whose picture taken in the South Pacific at the height of conflict made the New York Daily Mirror. He never had any children – but his second wife (after Aunt Edith, his first, died,) had kids – and one of her sons and his wife take care of Uncle George.
My older brother joined the Air Force too – he is a veteran.
My Uncle Charlie is a Marine – no “ex-” or “former-” but Marine – he, being divorced, is taking care of my Uncle Richard – his brother – who was a veteran of the Navy. Uncle Richard’s wife died several years ago – so the two veterans live together and give assistance as they can to the other.
My cousin Matthew is often off to Afghanistan – and the whole family awaits in trembles until he returns.
Several of my other cousins are veterans of various branches – though I have so many cousins not all served.
My Uncle Herel, my mother’s youngest brother – also a veteran. And a bit addled from the experience I will admit. Oh well. We’re all not perfect. His wife makes sure he makes it through the day.
And my two grandfathers were veterans of WWI and the aftermath – because when they escaped the Austrian Empire the first thing they did was join the US Army to get on the fast track to citizenship. They both had also been drafted, in their youth, prior to the First Big War, into the Austrian Army – and I got photos to prove it – and then, when the War came – the Emperor sent them letters in New York demanding their return to fight America. When they were done laughing they folded those letters away and we have them still in my family archives.
And so I think – my erstwhile adversaries – Maggie Gallagher, Tony Perkins, Peter Sprigg, Bryan Fischer, Michelle Bachmann, Rick Santorum – what did they do for veterans? What do they do now for veterans? Where is their service to their nation? There is none – precious little even.
Yes, though I never “served” in the military – for when my two brothers joined, and the family looked at me and said “Wouldn’t it be nice to have three boys in the Air Force?” I said – “you talking to me?” No, I could not have served – not because I don’t love the nation, not because I don’t like the military – but in those times, in the late 1970s – they would have asked, and I would have told – and that would be that.
And today, I drove down to New Orleans, and took out my friend Jay for lunch – because he too is a veteran – who made it through his enlistment with out the “big secret” being found out. Yes, I took a veteran to lunch today, and now I’m home taking care of another – and what have any of our erstwhile opponents done for our country?
Nothing – they complain with a deranged bitterness that I am a “threat” to society and “anti-American” – and I take care of an 89 year old WWII vet in his own home – putting my life on hold – as I too, like my old friend – signed up “for the duration.”
And let me tell you – I’m sick and tired of hearing of what a threat I am to my family and my nation when I am so deeply embedded into it and doing the right thing that I can’t imagine any of these creeps against me doing more than me – and I can see they are doing far less.
So let us bless the veterans of our nation – regardless of the wrong or right perceived in any war launched by politicians – and let us realize that without them this world would be such a worse place.
For since the United States became the richest most powerful nation on earth in the history of mankind peace and wealth has broken out all over this globe. Never before have so many had such riches and peace as today. And that so many don’t see this is simply unfathomable to me.
And yes, let us gay men especially thank our fellow gay men who served with distinction in the long history of this nation — and yes, I will even thank Mr. Obama and the Democrats for having finally come to the right conclusion — with a hearty reminder that it was President Clinton and the Democrats who created DADT — and repealing that odious law which presupposed that gay Americans were a threat to our own nation. Maybe we can’t be on the front lines — I can quibble with that — but we certainly can play the piano at the Officer’s Club — and probably far better than any heterosexual ever could, that’s for sure. We all do have our purpose in our lives; we are just made for the more gentle purposes.
Yes, happy Veterans Day and God Bless America.
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