Bradley Manning presents a tough, complicated case. Either you believe he is a great whistle-blowing hero or a confused young man who broke every rule in the book. Along the way there were questions about treatment in jail, media involvement, and the role of Julian Assange.
As often happens in what passes for American “public discourse”, everyone has an opinion and clamors to offer it while confusing salient facts.
Today is Veterans Day. I know this because I am a veteran. I also know this because I have a Cold War service medal, which ironically was not invented until about 5 years ago, long after the Cold War ended abruptly. Plus, my daughter sent me a happy Veterans Day email as she does every year.
The nation reveres veterans much more than they did a few decades ago, and they should. It is a tough life putting your ass on the line to save some other person’s ass…or in some cases, asshole. You know who you are. I’ll not get ugly today.
I joined the Air Force in 1977. Viet Nam was still a fresh memory and people tended to look down on saps like me who joined the military voluntarily. A life of gold chains, wooly chest hair, atrocious bell bottoms, and doing the Hustle while teetering on platform heels was supposed to have been nirvana. But if I had it to do all over again, I’d do it in a heart beat. In fact, sometimes I wish I had stayed and weathered a couple of wars. As it is for almost everyone who experiences it, military service is life changing and it changed me, radically, and for the better. Besides, I’m not much of a dancer and I knew better than to wear those ridiculous bell bottoms, even back in the day.