I’ve often said that my one major regret in life is that I did not do any type of military service. To be more specific, when I was 19 and living in Israel I was once at a crossroads to which one direction would have led me to Israel’s Armed Forces. I chose the other direction. I regret that. That being said, I’ve always had tremendous respect for the soldier of any free nation, specifically Israel and the United States. Here in America, whenever I meet a veteran I thank him or her for their service, full aware of the fact that my good fortune to live in freedom is given to me by their service and sacrifice. So what has struck me the most, and what appears to be the 300lb. elephant in the room is the fact that the last 2 attacks on police officers, attacks that have left 8 of them gunned down in cold blood, were perpetrated by veterans. The question we must ask is why?
The first part of the question is why is no one talking about that? FOX Opinion Channel-they primarily share Opinions nowadays, not News-a channel that blames the administration for everything wrong in the world, does not seem to address this with any significant emphasis. I’ve heard nothing from CNN either regarding this, leading me to believe that both stations have chosen to focus on the issues that are most politically expedient, rather than such an important factor in what’s happening to our society. Whether you support the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq or not, as an American or a citizen of any free country in the world for that matter, you must support the troops. We may all say that we do, but at the end of the day I can’t help but wonder what kind of support they are getting from our government and society as a whole upon their return stateside. I dare say that if proper structures were in place, structures addressing the practical and emotional needs of our soldiers, it’s entirely possible that both Micah Johnson and Gavin Long would not have committed these horrible actions against law enforcement. Instead, Johnson killed 5 officers in Dallas and Long killed 3 in Baton Rouge.
Is it possible that neither side wants to address this because it does not meet their political agenda, or is not being looked at as an important issue. Either way that’s a major problem. It’s one thing when inner-city children become criminals, growing up with no fathers, no guidance, no concept of right and wrong, but a soldier? Isn’t part of military service designed to teach and mold an individual to do the honorable and correct thing? Sure there will always be those that can’t be helped and turn dark, but when the last 2 major attacks on law enforcement in the United States were committed by veterans, shouldn’t we ask ourselves why? Shouldn’t we as citizens be increasingly concerned knowing that people who were trained to kill bad guys are coming home and being so neglected that they turn on the good guys as well?
I am sure there is enough blame to go around for everyone on both sides of the political aisle, a fact that is most likely the reason neither sides makes it an emphasis in the discussion. However, as an American who hopes this country will maintain its status as the greatest and freest country in the world, I believe it’s incumbent on us to focus on how we treat are veterans, otherwise there is a good chance more of them will go down this very dark path, a path that threatens us all.
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