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Veterans

Opinion: Dear veteran community, it’s not you, it’s me

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By Jason Collins

Writing this letter has been one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in years. It’s been a long time coming, but everything that follows comes from the heart.

First let me just say that you’ve been great. When I got back from my third tour and was struggling with alcoholism, post-traumatic stress, and a messy divorce, you were there for me with everything from funny and sometimes racist memes, to irreverent bumper stickers and cool gun videos.

I can’t really place my finger on when I first realized there was a problem, but I think it may have been one morning when I was furiously typing out a rant against some lib-tard whore who had posted an article saying we should treat illegal immigrants with respect. While I hadn’t actually read the article, the link was being passed around all the veteran social media sites and everyone was pretty fired up about it.

Then, under the comment of the second “Democrats are un-American communists” meme, someone posted the author’s hacked phone number and home address.

Yet I was shocked to discover I didn’t want to call and deliver a hate-filled rant to a complete stranger.

So I logged off, slipped on my combat veteran-designed flip flops and DD-214 robe, and went out to the porch swing to think. As I sat there sipping Black Rifle coffee from an “I served” mug and watched my Gadsden flag sway in the breeze, I knew something was seriously wrong with me.

But things only got worse in the weeks that followed. For example, one day a soldier from my old platoon posted a picture of his new tattoo. It was a full back portrait of one of our NCOs who had been decapitated by a rocket-propelled grenade while standing next to me during a gunfight.

While everyone else commented with tearful “He’d love that! RIP Dawg” and “See U in Valhalla bRotHer!” all I could think was, Jesus, that’s a terrible portrait. And Sgt. Smith always hated you.

What was happening?

Then last month I was leaving the mall parking lot, and through my OEF/OIF combat veteran window decals I saw two young Marines home on leave beating the shit out of a 14-year-old wearing a faded camouflage jacket. They were both wearing their issued combat backpacks, tan boots, and dog-tags on the outside of their tucked-in Death Before Dishonor t-shirts.

With spittle flying from his acne-scarred face, the larger one screamed “stolen valor” and kicked the young man in the head, while the other cheered him on and shouted that his grandfather who “butt-fucked Nazis all across Europe” would be rolling over in his grave if he could see what the teenager was wearing.

Normally I would have pulled out my phone and immediately streamed the video to the Spartan Valor Freedom Watch Defenders Facebook page, but instead I called 911 and reported two guys assaulting a kid. After that I knew things were near the breaking point.

During my last job interview I actually forgot to wear all three of my memorial bracelets, and a few days ago I went on a date and didn’t mention the military or combat even once.

It hurts me to say this, but I don’t even enjoy watching former-soldiers-turned Instagram celebrities shoot guns in the desert anymore. And seeing a Medal of Honor recipient shill tactical gear no longer makes me reach for my credit card.

I’ve even found myself questioning a former soldier’s ability to go on cable news shows and comment on global strategic policy despite having a single six-month deployment to Kuwait.

So look, I’m just going to rip the Band-Aid off. This isn’t working.

Please don’t try and contact me. I’ve cancelled all of my monthly t-shirt subscriptions and already finished my first book not written by a Navy SEAL. It actually wasn’t bad.

I’ve decided to get away from all this. I still love you, and you’ve given me memories that can never be replaced, but it’s over.

But please understand: it’s not you, it’s me.

Jason Collins is a former U.S. Army infantryman. After leaving the military and walking around with a chip on his shoulder, he finally decided to stop acting like a pretentious douchebag and reintegrate into society like the veterans of World War II, Korea, and Vietnam before him.

News

“The VA is doing a great job” finds joint study by prescription drug, alcohol industries

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WASHINGTON — The Department of Veterans Affairs received high praise from a study commissioned by the pharmaceutical and alcohol industries published today.

“The VA is doing an exceptional job providing just the right level of care and shouldn’t change a thing,” according the study. The findings stands in direct opposition to earlier criticism from veterans, congress, and anyone else who has ever interacted with the VA for any reason.

The report cites as evidence the number of veterans not receiving care despite their experiences, injuries, or requests to receive care.

“These are heroes who have served their country honorably, so, obviously, if they really needed care, the VA would get it for them,” stated Pfizer spokesman Tom Schnettler. “The fact that so many don’t receive care clearly shows how good the VA is at determining they don’t need it.”

The report also outlines how effective the VA is at managing the delicate transition soldiers have to make from active duty — where trauma is managed via Motrin and beer — to veteran status where pain is managed with opioids and also beer.

The majority of negative sentiment about the VA comes from haters and losers who would rather troops do lame, commie stuff like yoga, according to the study.

“If these fine American’s want to enjoy powerful prescription meds, whiskey, and UFC pay-per-views at many times the national average, they’ve earned that right,” said alcohol executive Nickolas Plum.

The study notes all numbers are normalized to remove accounting for individuals who served but now smoke marijuana on occasion as they are snowflake traitors to the nation and not true veterans.

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Army

Veteran didn’t risk his life at Bagram Pizza Hut just to see U.S. and Taliban sign peace deal

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professional veteran

A local Army veteran expressed outrage this morning over talks of a U.S.-Taliban peace deal, saying he didn’t risk his life during a two-month deployment to Bagram Airbase “just to see the war end like this.”

Cody Bennett started his protest on social media after U.S. special representative for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad began negotiations with the Taliban to end the war. As one of the “elite one percent” who join the military, Bennett says most Americans won’t understand his point of view, but somebody needs to speak truth to power.

“Me and my boys put too much on the line out there just to see these spineless politicians settle for peace,” said the former administrative clerk who was sent home early due to bone spurs suffered on the base gym’s elliptical machine. “Are my blood, sweat and tears worth nothing?”

Bennett claims that he and other veterans often had to combat issues like minimal selection at the base Pizza Hut as well as long lines and limited hours at the dining facility.

“A large pizza for sixteen dollars? I put my life on the line day in and day out, and they’re going to try to swill me for sixteen dollars? On top of that, they never use enough sauce,” said Bennett, who never came within 200 meters of the base’s perimeter and was administratively separated from the Army for being overweight.

“Those guys, the ones like me that held the line for their country despite slightly below average dining standards compared to middle-class American expectations, those are the true heroes,” he added. Don’t talk to me about peace or freedom until you’ve had to live through that hell.”

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Duffel Blog Presents

Duffel Blog Presents: 6 signs that your spouse is a Dudependa

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Due to a variety of policy changes, the U.S. military is witnessing a drastic rise in the number of adult male dependents. While conducting studies about how to best serve this previously overlooked demographic, the Department of Defense has discovered an entirely new sub-classification of the species: the “dudependa.”

The dudependa shares many traits with its closest living relative, the “dependapotamus” but is a unique and beautiful creature in its own right. Here are 6 signs that your spouse might be a Dudependa:

1. He’s entangled in a pyramid scheme selling supplements for a sketchy online supplier.

Sure, he calls it a multi-level marketing “opportunity” and identifies himself as an “independent CEO” on his Facebook, but you don’t quite know what to do when massive quantities of weird, questionably legal chemicals from the former Yugoslavia show up on your doorstep on an irregular basis. At least he seems happy trying to peddle his wares to all the other husbands on base who are already deeply indebted to the same, likely very dangerous people. #Bossbro

2. He’s cheating on you with a Crossfit instructor/semi-professional sugar daddy yacht model named Jodi.

You’re not quite sure why she’s even interested in him since he gained all that beer and Hot Pocket weight during your last deployment. It’s probably some combination of her insurmountable insecurity and the fact that he wears the same cologne as her dad.

3. He shows up at military ball in inappropriately tight tux so the whole unit can talk about the bulge on Monday morning.

And that doesn’t even include the part where he got blackout drunk, started crying and vomited on the XO’s wife. At least he’s hot.

4. He spends your re-enlistment bonus on calf implants.

To be fair, you’d pay any sum of money to get him to stop whining about how he looks like Mr. Incredible or SpongeBob’s “Larry the Lobster.” Other breeds of dudependa have also been known to siphon off their old lady’s cash to buy Xbox games, Nerf firearm accessories, and/or the devil’s lettuce.

5. He pumps out babies (with other women)

Do half of the toddlers on base look eerily similar or is it just you?

6. He attends girl’s night out with your sailors’ spouses but won’t spill their secrets

You’ve never seen this big of a gossip consistently pretend to take the moral high ground in refusal to divulge someone’s dirty laundry. He’s basically a “Sex and the City” character.

BONUS:

He asks for a military discount at the food court.

He cuts the husbands of lower-ranking sailors in line for the bench-press

His favorite phrases are “Do you know who my wife is?” and “We made chief.”

 

Blondes Over Baghdad, The Shammer, and LT Original G contributed to reporting

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News

VA tells veterans to use self-aid, buddy-aid before asking for appointment with doctor

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PHOENIX, Ariz. – Overcome by congressional inquiries, bad press, and the smell of decaying bodies in its waiting rooms, the Veterans Health Administration released a statement today telling veterans to use self-aid and buddy-aid before attempting to make a doctor’s appointment.

“We figured out that we didn’t need to improve our processes or hire more physicians,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. “We just needed to reduce the number of appointments to lower our waiting times.”

Wilkie told reporters that mandating self-aid and buddy-aid prior to requesting an appointment will help patients get seen within the VA’s current “Golden Year” timeline for routine appointments and “Platinum Ten Months” for patients with more life-threatening ailments.

To assist veterans in helping themselves and their comrades in arms, the VA is launching the “Pre-Hospital Assistance Program.” PHAP (pronounced fap), is modeled after the Army’s “Combat Lifesaver Program” where soldiers deploying to Iraq or Afghanistan learned how to give IVs, apply tourniquets, and get shot down by the sturdy female medics who taught the class.

In addition to training on emergency medical techniques, veterans enrolled in the rigorous ten-minute PHAP course will learn how to dispense kidney-quivering amounts of Motrin, apply snake oil to cancerous tumors caused by burn pits, and other pain prolonging measures to help their former brothers and sisters in arms.

“I think it’s a super idea,” said retired Army Spec. Alan Carnegie as he applied a makeshift tourniquet to a CPR mannequin’s neck. Carnegie, a signals intelligence collector who was medically retired for chronic vaginitis, is one of the first trainees in the pilot program.

“I’d just be sitting in my truck, posting rants about respecting the national anthem or stolen valor. Now, I can help Smitty over here manage his Rip It induced diabetes.”

The VA says it remains dedicated to caring for the nation’s veterans. They just need to take care of themselves and each other first.

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Marine Corps

Camp Lejeune residents invoiced for any superpowers developed after water poisoning

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SMALLVILLE, Kansas — Past residents of Camp Lejeune were recently sent invoices for any superpowers they may have developed from a series of incidents starting in 1953 that led to the toxic contamination of the drinking water supply in base housing, sources confirmed today.

The invoices arrived after the Department of Veterans Affairs received several reports of superpowers concerning an aging population that was living on base at the time. The exact source of the contamination was never determined, but rumors link it to a combination of fuel farm leakage, off-base dry cleaning mismanagement, and runoff from excess motivation of second lieutenants.

The Beckett family received invoices in the mail for a combined total of $45,000. Stephanie Johnson and her husband Glenn, 65 and 68 respectively, developed their superpowers about 10 years prior.

“I can understand billing my husband. He got teleportation,” Stephanie said. “But all I got was an enhanced sensitivity to race relations. What am I supposed to do with that? I’m a Republican!”

The controversy has increased over the years as various internal investigations have cleared the U.S. government of accountability while some whistleblowers still insist that base officials were aware of the problem and attempted to cover it up. One retired service member said he submitted an official report — which showed water toxicity levels up to 3,400 times over the recommended safe amount — to the base commander.

The commander “crumbled up the documents, stuffed them underneath his shirt, and pretended they were boobies,” the service member said.

James Holder, another local resident, received an invoice for $8,000. At first, he attempted to contact Defense Financing and Accounting Services to negotiate payment, but after being routed through several different departments, he was told that since he directly benefited from the contamination the U.S. government was entitled to reimbursement and garnishment of his disability payments if necessary.

“I guess the laser eyes aren’t that bad,” Holder said. “I can’t look in the mirror anymore or gaze lovingly into my wife’s eyes, but hey, at least I don’t have cancer.”

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News

Obese veteran agrees with Supreme Court on transgender troop ban

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One large veteran is praising the 5 to 4 Supreme Court decision that allows the Trump administration’s ban on transgender troops to go into effect while the legal debate moves through the circuit courts.

The ruling sparked a significant uproar on social media, but not everyone disagrees with the policy that has been criticized as exclusionary and misguided. Nick Tollhouse, a veteran with two tours of service, commended the Supreme Court for its critical legal analysis of the issue and sound decision regarding the future of the military.

“I just really think it’s about lethality and combat readiness,” he said, squeezing an entire tube of raw cookie dough into his mouth. “How am I supposed to serve in war next to someone who doesn’t even know their own gender?”

The sudden change in policy occurred after Trump tweeted that transgenders would not be allowed to serve in the military in any capacity. Previously, transgender service members could serve openly after a year-long study resulted in a change by the Obama administration.

“I just don’t think American tax dollars should go towards unnecessary surgeries that keep a Marine from properly serving his country,” he continued as literal bacon grease began to pool under his armpits. “My wife served too. And sure, she was pregnant for her entire enlistment, but at least she knows she’s a woman.”

Tollhouse served in the military from 2007 to 2015. His last unit deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom where they suffered numerous casualties. At the time, Tollhouse was selected by his command to remain in garrison after having undergone surgery to remove a sandwich that had lodged itself under a service-related fat roll.

“The military isn’t a money pool where you can just join up for free gender reassignment surgery because you feel like it. It’s for those people who want to defend and serve their country. Medical care like the mobility scooter the VA is providing me — that should go to the real heroes,” he said.

Tollhouse was unavailable for further comment as he was then rolled out of the interview room like a giant blueberry.

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News

Point/Counterpoint: If Colin Powell were alive today, he’d be 82 years old! vs. I’m Colin Powell, and I’m not dead

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The following is a Point/Counterpoint concerning the enduring reputation of retired Army General and former Secretary of State, Colin Powell.  Amanda Cartwright, a senior at Valley Forge High School and editor of the school newspaper, will be presenting the point. Powell will be presenting the counterpoint.

Point: Colin Powell was a retired four-star Army general who served as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and secretary of state. He was an American hero and a true patriot. If he were still alive, today would be his 82nd birthday.

Counterpoint: My name is Colin Luther Powell. I am still alive, and my birthday is in April.

Point: It is important for us to reflect on the life and accomplishments of this great American soldier and statesman. Who knows how the world might be different if he were still with us?

Counterpoint: I am flattered to be remembered so fondly, but I would like to reiterate that I am 100 percent still alive. I did an interview with Fareed Zakaria last October.

Point: We are so sad to have lost Mr. Powell. His impact on American military doctrine and foreign policy cannot be overstated. We can only wonder how he might feel about the present state of international politics. Standing here outside of his former home, one cannot help being overwhelmed.

Counterpoint: Are you standing outside of my house right now?

Point: An accomplished statesman, Mr. Powell maintained a strong presence on the international arena and stayed active even after he left office. Once he retired, he published a best-selling autobiography and even started restoring old Volvos. Here’s one of them in the driveway.

Counterpoint: Don’t touch that Volvo. I spent six months fixing that car. I am this close to calling the police.

Point: One can almost hear the sound of his thoughtful, resolute voice echoing through the neighborhood. Let’s pause for a moment and listen.

Counterpoint: That sound is my actual voice. That is me yelling at you from my upstairs office to go away. Please go away.

Point: In closing, we should all take time to reflect on Colin Powell’s contribution to our nation. He was, without a doubt, a great American.

Counterpoint: Is a great American.

Editor’s Update: As of press-time, Colin Powell is still a great American.

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News

Supreme Court torches appeal in giant, toxic burn pit on front steps

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Supreme Court building provided by Supreme Court.gov
Site of the Federal government's latest toxic burn pit. (Source: U.S. Supreme Court)

Washington — In a stern rebuke to 60 veterans’ lawsuits, all eight fuctioning Supreme Court justices dismissed “burn pit” appeals by torching them in a massive blaze on the front steps of the court’s building Monday.

The military used burn pits, located in Afghanistan and Iraq, to destroy waste, including batteries, tires and millions of collection agency letters, as well as evidence of extra-marital affairs and bribe-taking from Fat Leonard. The burn pits have been linked to illnesses in thousands of veterans.

The eight justices lit a humongous inferno at the steps of the high court that cremated the concerns of thousands of veterans suffering from cancer, tumors and asthma. 

While liberal-leaning justices set the conflagration with fast-burning JP4 jet fuel, conservatives preferred to dump drums of old-school kerosene. A resulting “firenado” was seen for miles across Washington, prompting hundreds of 911 calls to the Taxation Without Representation Police Department.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg did not participate. Law clerks reportedly whisked her away before Justices Thomas and Gorsuch added her to the fire.

“This isn’t a funeral pyre despite what Faux News wants you to think,”a Ginsburg law clerk told reporters. “She’s not even technically dead, just mentally, and that’s not the same thing.” The clerk then clarified that Ginsburg is being pickled by wine, not embalming fluid.

As hazardous fumes wafted across the District, Toxins overwhelmed both unfurloughed Department of Homeland Security employees still manning its 24/7 National Operations Center as hazardous fumes wafted across the area. The two reportedly became overwhelmed by toxins (or by having to work for no pay). They left the center to seek medical treatment and to beg food from homeless people they used to ignore.

In addition to relieving the nation of noxious burn pit lawsuits, the Court also charred pending cases deemed supremely tiring to the public. The cases included yet another gun rights fight, another suit targeting cake-bakers case, and a decade-old argument that Lady Gaga is untalented no matter how much money she makes.

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