I am stunned after watching a report tonight on ABC about a man whose "bad luck" included losing his job, 20% of his VA benefits, and then his home in a fire caused by a candle memorial to his son who died in Iraq. While I commend the station on publicizing a collection on this poor couple's behalf, the idea that the offense which needs to be corrected by legislation is prohibiting war protesters from protesting near a funeral (sensible enough) is astouding. Friends, look again at this man's "bad luck."
An economy crafted by an administration that values its richest citizens put this man out of a job.
A policy decision to save money by cutting VA benefits deprived him of enough to get by.
A war which a majority of Americans now believe was waged on false premises and wasn't worth the sacrifice claimed his son.
Folks, these events were not some freakish tsunami. This man's life has been devastated by the wholesale neglect of the welfare of plain folks like this man by a government that does not hear the cries of folks like him.
War protesters are the least of his problem. Imagine his life in a world in which job security was valued by the government enough to act upon...in which VA benefits were honored by the government...in which wars were not waged and youth sent to die on faulty premises.
Forget the protesters and get your reporters to put two and two together--bad policy is not bad luck, and ignoring malignant neglect of human beings is not patriotism.
Lori Chinitz has been a Chicago bandleader for the last 23 years, teaches music courses at Oakton College and is a progressive in her spare time. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.