The following is an opinion piece written by Jason Sievers, a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan now living in his parent’s basement.
I just want to thank you, America.
From Detroit down to Houston, and from New York to LA, I have seen the pride in every American heart, and it’s time I stand and say: thank you.
Because for once in my career, if only for a single, flash-in-the-pan moment, you actually gave a shit about us. You remember that? It was just a couple of months ago, when you wrote letters and called into radio shows and griped at your congressmen about how bad the VA was treating us. Those approximately three weeks? Those were great. Thanks for that.
I know you have since lost interest, and my plight has sunk back beneath your bovine, torpor-sluggish attention. That is to be expected — one cannot simply keep giving a fuck about somebody who is not himself. Not when there are newer shiny baubles and bits of string to play with.
The president has traded a bunch of terrorists for a defector! Macklemore turned out to be an anti-Semite! Ray Rice and Roger Goodell are bad, bad men! And Kanye … well, I’m not sure what he did now, but knowing ol’ Kanye, it just has to be both endearingly oblivious and also a display of massive, almost inhuman amounts of overweening hubris!
So these things have eclipsed our story, the story of how we, the people that bleed and die for you, who watch everybody we know and care about get cut down around us by the enemy, who pay for your freedom by sacrificing years and marriages and time with our kids and the opportunity to get a real job, have had our own government break faith with us. How our appointed and elected officials failed us and then lied about it. How government-run health care has proven to be wildly ineffective if not outright evil.
That’s okay. It’s not like we do this for any greater reward, appreciation or payoff.
You have already more than made our sacrifices worthwhile. The way you conservatives thank us so profusely for our service and pay for our meal at Hooters, although not as effective as if you, say, picked up a rifle and served yourself, that still makes us feel really warm and fuzzy. I’m sure glad for your support as I lie in my twin bed alone while my ex-wife fucks a guy my age who was smart enough to go into finance instead of enlist, and now makes $200k a year. My kids call him Daddy.
And you liberals, the way you protest against sending us to fight people who fuck goats, practice slavery, commit genital mutilation on little girls, and blow up schools, that also is just the bee’s knees. We really appreciate your “Where are the WMDs, Bush?” bumper stickers, especially those of us being treated for exposure to mustard, sarin, dioxin and chlorine gas.
So you’ve done your part — don’t feel guilty about turning your attention elsewhere, the way a small boy gets distracted from Dora by a lollipop. It was bound to happen.
I don’t expect you to go out and make any kind of effective change to the VA. I’m just happy that for a brief while, you kind of, sort of, gave a fuck about us.
That was just great.
Thank you, America. Plus, next week is Veteran’s Day, which will be cool. I need a new mattress.
Check out After Action with Max & Paul, an awesome new podcast featuring the creators of Terminal Lance and Duffel Blog.