Amendment II US Constitution
A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
When the full might of the American military is unleashed, you can bet the farm on a positive outcome for America. That is not false pride or overt patriotism speaking, that is a simple fact, and the rest of the world knows it as well as we do.
The only reason we are in a war with terrorists and listening to a bunch of crap from resurgent communists in Russia, Cuba, China and South America is because communist collaborators and infiltrators wormed their way into Congress, the White House and the media between the 30s and the 70s. Together they forced a withdrawal from Vietnam when the war was won, and refused to intercede to stop the slaughter of millions of innocents by the communists after the fall of South Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.
Thus the United States government was and is seen as a bunch of weak kneed, simpering courtiers who will cower at the first sign of trouble.
Until George Bush came along that is.
Now this generation is forced to fight an especially dirty war because of the actions of people like John Kerry, Ted Kennedy, Iowa Democratic Senator Tom Harkin, Jane Fonda, Walter Cronkite, and Pennsylvania Congressman John Murtha, back in the 70s. Yet, we are winning, and the world once again is backing off on its efforts to force the US into a corner where it has to negotiate away its leadership position.
The successes of our military are obviously the primary reason for this turnabout. But right alongside the active duty military there is another force in America that gives any potential enemy or invader significant pause - the massed force of our veterans.
Unlike any other country, the United States has tens of millions of trained, experienced veterans, millions of whom are armed with personal weapons in accordance with the rights guaranteed by the Constitution.
Woe be to any force that ignores the American veteran. We can operate weapons ranging from .38 caliber revolvers to nuclear warheads, and a huge percentage of us are combat experienced.
So how do you nullify this incredibly potent force if you are trying to infiltrate and overpower America from within? One theory is that you disarm the vets.
Which brings me to Rush Limbaugh and my pal Melanie Morgan, conservative radio talk show hostess and co-author of the book American Mourning, who appeared on the Hannity and Colmes show on Fox Monday night to defend Limbaugh from false accusations that he is anti-troop and anti-military. Limbaugh had been discussing wannabes, posers and embellishers on his show last week, terms which are all too familiar to our congresspeople, and he used the term "phony soldiers."
Immediately, the left tried to say he was talking about anyone in the military who disagrees with President Bush, which is so far away from the truth - and I was listening as this conversation was aired - that you have to live in a comic book fantasy land to give it any credence whatsoever.
Naturally these claims come from Congress's biggest gas bags, including Iowa Democratic Senator Tom Harkin, himself a wannabe embellisher, and Harry Reid, who makes a career out of disparaging the military. It is a common tactic for the left to divert attention from their own sneaky, underhanded actions, so this latest is not surprising nor unusual.
As expected, Melanie made a spirited and dead-on accurate defense of this latest attempt to smear a conservative talk-radio host, but even as she defended a man who probably needs no defending, her best line was that the entire conversation was ridiculous.
Here's why. Limbaugh, like every other thinking American was appalled and outspoken in his denunciation of the MoveOn.org ad in the New York Times last month that called Gen. David Petraeus a traitor. The backlash against the ad and its producers has been so overwhelming, and the refusal of so many Democratic cowards in the Congress to denounce it has angered so many Americans that the Choose To Lose faction obviously had to create a diversion.
So they jumped when Limbaugh used the phrase "phony soldiers," referring to a poser who was attempting to garner military honors that he hadn't earned and didn't deserve, one of a long line of such scum who have been exposed through the Stolen Valor Act. The left immediately claimed Limbaugh was talking about all soldiers, especially those who had served or were serving in Iraq or Afghanistan, and their puppets in Congress started demanding that Congress pass a measure denouncing him.
The GOP and a bunch of Democratic senators refused, of course, because Limbaugh did nothing wrong, and calling a commanding general a traitor is a long, long way from calling a dirt bag embellisher a "phony solider."
But the over-the-top effort by a bunch of losers who call themselves Media Matters, a phony 'watchdog' organization that Hillary Clinton says she formed, was so frantic that I started wondering what it was they were hiding. These creeps are like the kid in the third grade who hits the teacher in the back of the head with a spitball and then blames it on the kid who is actually doing his assignment. When you see them flailing around screaming like a stuck pig, you know they are up to no good.
Then it occurred to me that I have received several emails from other veterans over the past week expressing major concern over what they are calling the Veterans Disarmament Act.
The bill, House Resolution 2640, on its face is an effort to tighten gun control regulations, including improving inter-agency reporting of people with mental health issues, in the wake of the mass murders at Virginia Tech last spring. It has already passed the House and was sent to the Senate, and if you are a vet, or support vets, or believe in the right to bear arms, you may want to take a close look at it and determine whether it really is a slight of hand.
Its purpose is to prevent people with mental illnesses from obtaining firearms legally. Note that I said legally, because while I agree that we shouldn't be arming people who can't or won't control themselves, there is no doubt that if someone really wants a firearm, here or anywhere else in the world, they will get one. Add to that the fact that it already is illegal for most people with serious mental disorders to purchase firearms and you have to wonder why there is a need for this bill and just who is pushing it.
That is the issue that has some vets pretty upset. According to the emails sent my way New York Senator Chuckles Schumer is pushing the bill hardest, which automatically sends up red flags in the veteran community. Schumer, according to many vets, is the Most Distrusted Man in America, which is saying something considering how many contenders there are for that title in Congress.
But the emails I have been receiving also say this bill declares Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as one of the forms of mental illness that qualifies for a ban on firearm ownership.
Before you go all screwy on me, I should point out that many forms of PTSD are as mild as jumping upon hearing loud noises after a tour in combat, sleeplessness, irritability, or just not liking crowds. Many of these symptoms, which have only the most tenuous connection to the extreme cases of combat stress that once were called by more accurate terms like "shell shock," and "battle fatigue," are manageable, and diminish greatly with time.
The media would have us believe that all cases of PTSD are severe and involve extreme acts of violence by people who are so stressed out by their combat experiences that they can never live normally again. The truth is that most PTSD, which also is common in professions such as law enforcement, nursing, emegency room doctors, fire fighting, EMTs, ambulance drivers and others who have regular contact with violence, is fairly mild, treatable, and people who suffer from it aren't threats to themselves or others.
I looked up H. R. 2640 on the Internet, and the version I found speaks about people who are institutionalized for mental disorders, without specifying PTSD.
But here is what worries me. First, I don't trust Congress and neither do 90 percent of my fellow Americans according to the latest polls. It wouldn't surprise me in the least that anti-firearms zealots in the House and Senate are again attempting to disarm the people who understand firearms the best through another piece of "feel good" legislation.
But beyond the bill itself is another factor regarding veterans and PTSD. Virtually all of the veterans organizations ranging from the biggies like the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Legion, to the special interest groups like the Vietnam Veterans of America and the Iraq Veterans Against the War, are working their tails off to get homecoming veterans labeled as having PTSD.
They say they are doing this to "document" health issues that may not manifest themselves for years or decades, and to get the vets "into the system." But what if vets by the thousands declare they are suffering from PTSD, even in its mildest forms, only to find out much later that they are thus barred from owning firearms?
What if the bill today affects only those with severe mental disabilities, but later is amended to include all vets who are declared as suffering from PTSD? The result would be a severe and totally unfair restriction of the the most basic of constitutional rights imposed on the very people who have actually fought to preserve those rights.
I don't like it. I don't like the worry and concern voiced by my fellow veterans, I don't like the door that is opened, and I don't like the fact that American veterans distrust the US Congress to such a degree that even if their fears here aren't justified, the fact that they have these fears is remarkable itself.
Members of the Senate and President Bush need to take a close look at this bill before it goes one step further and determine whether it is in fact a Veterans Disarmament Bill, or a step in that direction.
If so, it needs to be killed on the spot. It is obvious after the shootings in Virginia Tech that inter-agency reporting needs to be upgraded in the law enforcement arena. But the school shootings that are taking place across America aren't being perpetrated by veterans.
For the most part they are caused by disaffected youth who often needed far more responsible parental involvement in their lives, and far fewer video games. Punishing the veteran community due to the actions of people who aren't veterans, and probably aren't qualified to join the military in the first place, is not right, and is potentially dangerous to our country.
It should end before it starts.
Oh, by the way. I have been examined by Veterans Administration doctors and declared totally free from PTSD in any form, despite my combat experiences. Never had it, never will.
And it is no one's business whether and how many firearms I own.
Tuesday, October 02, 2007