I wept today....
I returned to the World from Vietnam 49 years ago last month. I was physically unhurt, but more than a little traumatized by my tour. I never considered that I may have suffered from PTSD, or any other service related illness that was recognized back then. I don't even remember being aware of that acronym. PTSD. I'm still not sure WHEN it was coined or when I first became aware of it's official designation. But I KNEW some of my brethren were having some real "head" issues. Not that I didn't have some pretty bad nightmares, and got real weepy over silly little things that made no sense, ( especially when drinking or getting stoned. ) but I was ok compared to many. After all, I was assigned to a MASH ( 7ih Surgical ) and did not face combat on a daily basis. I saw the results of said combat. Vicarious living......
We all have met or know of a combat Vet that suffers in some varying degree. My Grandson came home from Afghanistan about 4 years ago. By then, we all knew about PTSD. I knew the moment I hugged him he was suffering. I knew it was a permanent situation. Clearing IED's is a messy business. He's on the edge and I fear the moment.....
When I heard about Donald Trump's statement about sufferers of PTSD was because they/ we ? are WEAK ? it stopped me in my tracks. WEAK ?? WEAK?? You son of a bitch !!!!!
White hot rage !!
But I heard VP Biden speak this evening, and I wept. I wept for every one of my brothers I served with as well as those who followed. I wept for my grandson and his brothers. I wept for the families that sent whole men and women off to war and got back their bodies before losing them to booze and dope or whatever refuge they sought to escape the recurring dreams, sights and sounds that lives in their heads. THEY ARE NOT WEAK ! They're lots of things, but WEAK is not one of them.
Donald Trump, you are FUBAR... and at my advanced age, I'd still like to put my foot up your sorry ass.
He should know that is why we have a "Veterans Day" and not a "Frat Boy Who Avoided the Draft With After-War-Healing Bone Spurs" Day.
You and all the other vets should not have to suffer fools like Trump.
he also pays no taxes to assist our military
he needs to SHUT THE FUCK UP
THAT makes me cry.
Bless you who have served, like my dad 23 ...years USAF.
I'm sure in his mind, visiting vets is a burden. They don't offer any possible means for him to scam money out of them. But maybe if they help elect him, they'll serve a purpose. So he goes to wherever, a grifter in search of his next mark.
Sorry Donald. You're not welcome here.
And I never served.
I'm in my 40s and female, but I did spend two years doing national service. My service was easy compared to service members-- I taught for two years in my city's Title I schools. Not easy, given the minimum 50-hour-a-week requirement and the $900 monthly stipend, but nothing compared to combat.
The reason I got so angry is that my Grampa was in WWII. (FIL in Viet Nam, GM was a WAC, brother in Iraq... many family members in the service but all lived and mostly survived pretty much intact.) My Grampa was a navigator on a bomber and was shot down over Germany. He ended up at Stalag Luft One (after the great escape.) My Grampa was liberated by Russian forces and lived but was so traumatized that he was almost lost for the rest of his life after he came home. Back then we called it 'survivor's guilt.' He could never even speak of his experiences.
I saw that Trump garbage tonight and thought of my Grampa. That ignorant, useless man has never served a minute of his life and he had the GALL to to characterize my WWI navigator POW Grampa as "not strong" because he suffered terribly in a German POW camp? Is that really what the right wing is saying about our service members? They're WEAK?
Thank you for your post, and thanks for the opportunity to express some feelings I wasn't sure what to do with.
My wife spent two years working in some super-depressed areas as an AmeriCorps volunteer. It has had a profound impact on who she is and what she believes (and has trickled to me too, I'm sure).
I never understood why the focus for service is always focused on the vets and war. A lot of people do a lot of hard work and make a difference in our country and nobody gets hurt as result.
For what it's worth, I'm totally disabled as a result of PTSD from Iraq. I hate it when I'm thanked for my service. My service was squandered and in no way made our country or the world a better place. Some veterans have done some great and selfless things, but that wasn't me and my era of Iraq veterans. Bush and company wanted to kill as many Arabs as they could after September 11th and were pissed off to discover that ethnically Afghanis aren't Arab. So they had to go somewhere else to get their Arab blood.The war on Iraq was about nothing other than revenge on Arabs in general for September 11th. It didn't matter that none of the terrorist responsible for September 11th were from Iraq. They were Arab and they are all the same to a large swath of our citizens.
I live in a very veteran rich (and also, inexplicably, red) area and I noticed at least five Trump signs came down today. Now, whether that means these people are going to vote for the correct candidates or not, I don't know. But, they sure as hell aren't voting for Trump.
This may very well be the end of the road for Trumpski.
regarding the removal of the signs. I have always believed that people that put them up will vote and my guess is that some of those probably will continue to do so, but they may skip the top of the ballot and just vote in their State and local elections. I would think that most will not switch party, but simply not vote.
I believe that Mr. Trump's comments (and his business issues of losing almost $1B) need to be discussed at great length with those who would possibly vote for him. If those voters choose another candidate, skip the top of the ticket or stay home, it will be better for the country overall.
He is a mother f***er! And yet, look at the members of our Armed Forces - they support him.
When you remove your foot from his sorry fat ass, I will be in line behind you.
I was an Army Medic in Vietnam 1969 and dealt with so many casualties I can't remember them all. Not even close. But the ones I do remember were horrific and stick in my mind like super glue. Upon my return from Vietnam I was told by another returning 'Nam Vet in the San Francisco airport to get out of my uniform as quickly as possible because I was a moving target. It was downhill from then on. I have struggled over the years to get on top of the memories, but it has been really, really hard. But back in 1978 a group of us 'Nam vets (Army and Marines mostly) got together and decided we were going to each-one-teach-one in hopes of educating people on the struggles we were having trying to readjust from the war. The media at that time were portraying us as drug crazed killers who were ready to go off on a dime. It stuck and now that orange-colored monster has stirred up that old stereotype of war veterans being weak if they suffer from the war. This from a man-boy who never was in the military and never set foot in a war zone. Thanks for your posting jaysnub. You're not alone even though we feel as though we are. Trump may have set us back, but we'll get past this one as we have since the 'Nam.
Stuff I read rarely ever illicits a true laugh from me, but your comment did. I'm going to have to repeat your line!
Let me just put this short and righteous bit by Malcolm Nance here.
(Army, U.S. 69-71)
I've always been convinced that people who say that they want to get tough with foreign policy have no idea or experience what it really means.
Veterans that support trump and that position obviously never saw or experienced what a weapon they fired does to another human being up close and personal like a combat veteran does.
He's on my twitter feed. People need to look at a world map sometimes, with the Middle East, its like objects in a mirror are closer than than they are.
My second most fervent hope related to the OP is that Trump is crushed and humiliated on Nov 8.
My greatest hope is that suffering veterans receive all the help they need and that our citizens in uniform are no longer sent to war for lies and greed.
as I wanted to serve my country. I had many friends who were in Nam...at Danang air base when the Tet offensive happen and all of them years later were still haunted by what they endured as a member of the Air Force. No where close to what our soldiers constantly were under duress with in combat then and now. For trump to say/imply those who suffered PTSD are weak is as a despicable of a message as I have ever heard...
even more despicable are US veterans and military personnel giving trump another free pass on his obvious contempt of all us who served our country
First wave at Guadalcanal. My grandmother said that after he came home he woke up the house every night, screaming, for over a year. He had occasional nightmares for the rest of his life. He was an avid hunter before the war, but never killed another creature after he came home. He said he'd caused enough death to last 10 lifetimes. God only knows what he saw and did. He contracted Malaria in one of those south Pacific hell holes he was stuck in. Suffered reoccurring bouts until I was about 10. He died of ALS in 2000, and when mom sold the house, I found quinine water in the cupboard--even in the year 2000, he was never without it. He had a lot of scars from his time in the Marines, but he was this little girl's HERO, as he will always be.
So here is a colossal FUCK YOU, Donald J TRUMP, you flaccid, dishonest, cowardly, despicable, vile sack of shit. You aren't fit to whisper any soldier's name in reverence, much less calling them "weak."
After this, I have absolutely no respect for any of his supporters either. They're the worst of America, so fuck them, too.
I miss you every day, dad.
and was on a ship to the pacific a week after the bombing. He spent 36 straight months over there.
When he came home, he got a job, married my Mom, and never spoke about the war.
One night, I rented 'Saving Private Ryan,' and somehow got Dad to watch it with me. He hated sitting
still long enough to watch a movie. Anyway, that night, he had nightmares for the first time in years.
(That he would admit to.)
I felt horrible because I had talked him into watching the movie.
Dad wouldn't talk about the war, the 'things he was ashamed he had had to do in order to stay alive.' But
he would share funny stories about his buddies, and the still he made, the 'jungle juice' that came out of
that still, (must have been 90 proof,) and he kept all the dark memories to himself.
The day before he died, in December of 2012, he finally told me a few of those dark memories.
I think he knew he was dying. Maybe telling me some of the bad stuff was a way of confession for his soul.
He was supposed to have been awarded the Bronze Star. I have the paperwork for it sitting right next
to me. He wouldn't let me submit it because 'he was not proud of what he had to do to get that Bronze Star.'
Dad got Malaria too. He kept quinine pills in the house for years, as he had more than one bout with Malaria.
When the pills were no longer available, he kept tonic water in the house, as it contains quinine.
About two months ago, I came across the bottle of tonic water in the pantry. I figured that after at least four
years of sitting there, it had to be flat. So I tossed it out and went to the store and bought more. I don't drink it.
But I have to keep it in the house, in honor of Dad.
I think of the hell my Dad went through for thirty-six straight months. He told me one story that in real time,
on an island in the pacific, maybe took up two hours of one of the 1,095 days of his time over there.
And I think of every veteran, retired, passed away, still serving, and I could never, EVER, think of any of them
as being weak in any way, shape or form. If anyone dares to talk to me about Trump after this horrid man has had
the gall to talk about our men and women in uniform in such a disrespectful way, they will hear of the hell my Dad
went through, all so they could have the right to keep voting. And I will keep talking until they hang their heads in shame and walk away.
catbyte, thank you for bringing back some memories for me, memories of my Dad, MY hero, my best friend in the entire world. I miss him every day. Hugs to you, from one little girl to another. (Who just had her 60th birthday not too long ago, and still can't wrap her head around the fact that her Daddy wasn't here to celebrate it with her.)
That anyone could be that stupid. That cruel. That insensitive. These are OUR veterans. Whether you agree with the wars they fought in, they put THEIR lives on the line to go into harms way to carry out the policy of the United States. To imply that those who saw the horrors of war close up and personal and who suffered TRAUMA because of it somehow aren't strong enough is too horrible for words.
And this from a privileged, elitist, narcissistic asshole who thinks that going to a military prep school is somehow better than serving, and who got a deferment so he wouldn't have to serve is just so beyond reason. Can we finally, finally say: "At long last, have you left no sense of decency?"
I weep for my brother-in-law who was a helicopter pilot in Viet Nam, got shot in the head (thank goodness for that helmet) and suffered lifelong effects both physically and emotionally.
I weep for my cousin's grandson who killed himself upon returning from his second tour in Iraq.
I weep for my friend's husband, a Viet Nam vet struggling every day with PTSD.
I weep for the 22 soldiers a day who die by their own hands because of their wartime experiences.
I come close to weeping for anyone who supports Donald Trump--clearly they know not what they do.
But I do not weep for Trump, that soulless sociopath who would dare to call those soldiers dealing with PTSD weak. Words almost fail me except to say: Shame on you, Trump. Shame. On. You.
or "shell shock"
It has existed as long as people were compelled to do things to other people that just should not be done. It is as old as war. It needs to be treated, and treated seriously. . . Until mankind has grown enough to stop hurting itself.
I want to believe that eventually that POS will find a line that even his supporters think shouldn't be crossed.
Some statement or action that would finally make them say that enough was enough.
If this wasn't the line then nothing will be - except perhaps if he denounced racism in public, I'm pretty sure that would chase many away
Peace to you and yours
You are both honorable Americans. Honorable Americans who should NEVER have to listen to disrespect like that which Trump has been spewing.
So many honorable Americans have answered the call, paid the price, suffered in silence.
I'd like to help you put your foot up Trump's sorry ass.
And sad you, or anyone, had to go through this.
If a person doesn't know about something, they should shut up about it. I'm sorry he has not learned that.
"THEY ARE NOT WEAK!" This is the first time I've seen all caps used appropriately.
We should all weep for those Americans who worship wealth, greed, violence and lies. I am thankful that they are a minority. Mrs. Clinton said half of rump's supporters are in this group. That implies that even if we have 100% voter participation, 25% are bat shit crazy in love with an authoritarian, vulgar, criminal loser.
if its not about him, he just doesn't get it, nor does he care it it doesn't fill his pockets.
Thank you for sharing.
I was a medic and still can see some of the faces. I was fortunate in that after five months I was wounded and I lived spending 10 months rehabbing. Afterwards, it was a year wandering around drunk and stoned hoping what was in my head would fade with drugs and alcohol. Alone, broke, sitting in jail, something had to change or I was heading for a very bad place. I didn't wake up one day and start the rest of my life. Only in Hollywood that happens. It was one step at a time, sometimes falling, sometimes not wanting to get back up. I slowly began not to replace those memories but to look another way. School and books took me out of that valley. That was my way. But I still can see the faces and tears well up in my eyes at how senseless war is. And I look at these kids today and tears come to my eyes at how senseless war is. We don't want to see what we have done to these beautiful young people. If we do not recognize them what does that say about us discarding the children of our people onto a trash heap because we can't help them one step at a time? Are we that weak?
My best friend's dad who did 2 tours in Vietnam and still wakes up with night terrors almost 50 years later fuck Trump. None of you are weak.
He is incapable of understanding, empathy or compassion. He's a caricature of a human being who feeds his id with hate for real human beings.
I can not understand how any veteran or active duty member could be in the same room with him, let alone support him. Clue burner troops: He hates us. Every weary or horror filled day we did and experience things he could not bear for second, let alone months or years and deep in his rat filled subconscious he realizes this. He is weak, without substance, and in his envy and fear he lashes out.
I share your rage toward the Great Orange Hope on behalf of all my comrades who are still affected (and always will be) by the horrors of combat. Weak, indeed.
What is it with this THING that Americans have about rugged individualism, making it on your own without asking for help? Why has asking for help, any help, been turned into a sign of weakness and some sort of a moral stigma. It's not just vets asking for help with mental problems, but poor people asking for food stamps, and low income workers asking to raise the minimum wage, and voters asking for an easier way to vote, and minorities asking for better schools, and kids asking for subsidized school lunches? Why is that?
Republicans don't want to help anyone, except themselves and their cronies.
I think to myself, no one,...NO ONE....can be THAT free of empathy or understanding to say the kind of things he has repeatedly said since starting his freakshow campaign...
Capture and tortured? Not a hero...
Actually accepting another man's Purple Heart? Always wanted one but this is easier...
Lost a son or daughter? Not a sacrifice greater than his...
Come home with PTSD? Not strong enough to take it...
For his defenders trying to blame the media for Trump's inanity...stop it, you're embarrassing yourselves.
For the people thinking of voting for this monster, stop it, history would judge you very harshly for what he would do.
For the nation looking for a solution, VOTE HILLARY CLINTON and do it without a second thought.
There is one candidate for President of the United States of America.
There is another asshole running around insulting everyone he can and mocking the very people he should be licking their boots.
Donald J. Trump is unfit to hold ANY elected office, anywhere.
We, the people, deserve better....but our wounded veterans deserve more from ALL OF US. Gratitude is surface level stuff...anyone with a pulse and a conscience should be able to understand that they deserve our thanks...but when they return home wounded and broken in our names, then goddamnit these men and women deserve to be receiving the best care, the best benefits, the best rehab and the best treatment options that this so-called "Greatest Country on Earth" can find. We should never be sleeping soundly and comfortably while those who were sent into harm's way are dying and living on the streets. It should be the kind of shame that collectively is intolerable.
The state of the VA, the stress placed on the military in the 16th consecutive year of active combat war, the status of so many wounded (recognized AND unrecognized) should shame the nation and should be an albatross around the neck of ALL sitting politicians...but if we act as a nation to install Trump as the Commander-in-Chief, we deserve much, much worse than shame...and we will get it, too.
The Viet Nam Memorial - 58,307 heros made the ultimate sacrifice - so many more are still suffering - my brothers came home - our neighbors son did not..we weep...I was 19, 49 years ago...we weep for our generation...
My wishes for your family to heal - strength and support for your wonderful grandson -
When this election is over my hope is for NO MORE WAR EVER - and Donald J Trump's name will never be spoken of again....
Joe Biden does have a way of calming the waters...much beloved
I can't even come close to imagining the feelings you have. I was the angriest I have been after the idiot's comments, and that is saying a lot considering all the garbage he has spewed. Thanks for posting this.
and never really understood the damage done until someone directed me into the VA's PTSD program. It turned my life around.
Having spent many nights in an NDP (night defensive position) I can attest that what we said back then is true today. "There are no tough guys in the NDP.
I only wish I had Donald Punk there with us. He would have had an "accident" or handed a map, binoculars, a compass and a radio to be a forward observer. We had our ways of dealing with jackoffs like The Donald.
I'm so sorry his sociopathy caused you pain and other veterans too.
Almost all of these murderous and horrific episodes in history are due to psychologically unhinged people in charge of huge machines.
Only the real experienced warriors who have had to fight to survive are the ones that should be allowed to voice opinions about what wars we should fight. And those opinions should be debated with experienced representatives, not clucky neocons or ideological pacifists. All of our lives depend on this.
I think the real weak ones are the chickenhawks. Like Trump.
Viet Nam Army Vet......it never leaves you.....I am mostly OK, but I feel very badly about the young men and women that were lost in Nam as well as the young people we have lost in Iraq and Afghanistan......but I remember well the trauma that my brothers and sisters in arms went through mentally.......PSTD is an illness.......it is a sickness that never leaves people and they live those nightmares over and over.......so as far as I and many of the people I served with during Nam, if t-Rump thinks all of us are weak, he is extremely weak minded......he has not business anywhere near the oval office in my opinion.......
Sort of. My father was in Vietnam pre-Gulf of Tonkin. He was a French linguist (everything between Hanoi and Moscow was in French), and he was evidently part of some sort of surveillance mission. He went to his grave never telling us what happened to him.
I do know, though, how much it impacted him. It impacted the rest of us along with him. I won't go into details.
So I, a default pacifist who was ineligible for military service (medical reasons), take any suggestion that someone suffering from PTSD is somehow "weak" as a horrific insult.
I also thank and respect everyone who served our country with honor - and I realize that what counts as "honor" may vary on a battlefield.
We considered ourselves "lucky" as a family. They all got wounded but somehow, they all made it home when so many they served with did not. A few eventually died of their wounds.
As a young boy, I developed an unusual bond with one of them. It was the only time in my life when I could say "we knew each other without speaking". I stuck to him like glue and we hardly ever said a word to each other. There was just immense comfort to be in each other's company. But it was far too brief. He'd been away for decades. He visited. We bonded. And he left and never came back. I wanted to go after him but my parents wouldn't allow it.
After he left, I started on a journey to try to find out what happened to him. I was relentless. That journey started around 1964. I researched, talked with family and traced his life and military activity. That journey ended about two months ago at a war museum with an officer specialized in PTSD reviewing his history and records. He fought the entire war for four plus years in a number of horrific situations. The intriguing thing for the military (which kind of bothered me) was because he was so messed up with classic PTSD, they wanted to understand why he hadn't killed himself when most others that badly messed up had.
The answer for me that they readily accepted was quite simple. His father had died in a farming accident when he was eight. He was a naturally protective person. He became the "man" of the family, quit school and got a job to support his mother, little brother and sister - at 8 years old. During his military service, he sent his pay home to take care of his mother and sister. And that's what he did when he went to live in the woods for 45 years after the war with this nasty undiagnosed and at the time, not treatable case of PTSD. The love for his mother and sister kept him going when he determined he was too mentally unfit with PTSD to live in society with people.
I asked the officer specialized in PTSD what I should tell family members about his service. He said (contrary to Donald Trump) "tell them he was one tough son of a bitch".
I'd add this about PTSD: it's a pretty bad wound for family members to endure when a loved one is afflicted with it. It's haunted me much of my life and caused considerable emotional pain.
If I'd seen Donald Trump yesterday, I might be arrested by the Secret Service. I wanted to punch him in the face and lay him out. You've heard it like a broken record: this man is so ignorant, he has no business being commander in chief of the men and women in the military. I was a Bernie supporter and I flat out am no fan of Hillary but she's a heck of a lot better alternative to this asshole.
Looks like the initialism "PTSD" started to show up around 1971 and took off around 1980: https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=PTSD&year_start=1800&year_end=2000&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2CPTSD%3B%2Cc0