I read Ralph Hill’s letter and found it interesting, and I would like to respond.
I, too, am a veteran. I just returned from Washington, D.C. where I visited the Vietnam Wall. It was a very cathartic and emotional experience that I will never forget. I was there to honor my squad leader, who died in my arms nearly 50 years ago. Two of his brothers, who I had never met, joined me there. It would be hard to describe the feelings that passed between the three of us.
I also visited Arlington National Cemetery and was in awe of what I saw. Row upon row of headstones perfectly aligned and honoring the brave servicemen who have served our country. While there, I heard four 21-gun salutes in the distance. This is normal for a place where they carry out over 20 funerals a day.
I wanted to preface my comments with these two incidents to help readers understand why I am writing this piece.
There are over 58,000 names on the Wall. There are over 400,000 people buried at Arlington Cemetery. I could not find any reference on the Wall to race, creed, or color. I found nothing that said they hated their president, which I am pretty sure the confederate soldiers did. Yes, they are buried there. There was nothing on their markers that said they were worried about scandal or questioned anyone's patriotism.
Did I mention my squad leader was African American? Through some alignment of the stars I was able to connect with his family about seven years ago. We have never mentioned race in all that time. When I met the brothers at the Wall we embraced as old friends do. I know we will always be friends. They tell me I have more family to meet. Race was never mentioned.
The point of this rambling story is that there is a time and place for everything. The Wall or Arlington will never be the place. People need a place to get away from the problems of the world. No one can take the stress 24/7.
It used to be sports. Now that is being taken away by a bunch of overpaid athletes, many who haven't got the foggiest idea what they are protesting. See social media if you don't believe me.
It appears to me all this has done is widen the gap between races. I may be wrong, but I doubt it.
Millionaires yelling injustice at the common person just doesn't work.