The Aftermath of War

Can I support veterans without supporting disastrous wars?

Disabled American Veterans of Cincinnati, Ohio, sent me a 2012 planner three months late.

The front cover shows a glowing mansion, with a glowing lighthouse in the foreground and a glowing sunset to the side, and a supersized Old Glory blowing horizontally towards a chimney blowing vertical white smoke amidst peak foliage. What jerk painted this bad imitation of bad painter par excellence Thomas Kinkade?

Gold embossed letters hail, “SEA to Shining SEA.” I used to know which sea we were talkin’ ’bout. Now I’m not so sure.

The impassable divide between this patriotic pablum, this obscene flag porn, this airbrushed, Disneyfied, unnatural, maudlin, misleading, sanctimonious pimping and my understanding of what’s really going down makes it hard to process the marketing materials.

Disabled veterans are no joke. They’re a tragedy that feels unfathomable. They are the double, triple, quadruplecrossed. Suckered into signing up, programmed to brutalize a fabricated enemy, shamed into commiting crimes that now haunt them, they’re a collateral damage no one stateside cares about.

Elisha Cook, Jr., sensing that Humphrey Bogart is on to him.

They’re the Elisha Cook, Jr. of war.

Why did they go? What were they thinking? What are they thinking now? Why is National Commander Donald L. Samuels asking me for 2ยข a day on their behalf?

What a clustermindfuck.

How do you sell compassion for volunteer soldiers returning from unprovoked assaults on countries half a world away, orgies of destruction that enrich corporations, decimate the treasury, and empower the fascists?

Who are these poor sons of bitches who went to war?


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