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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.

Max Butthurt feeds on the comments of morons. He is very fat. Hate him on Twitter @TYFYS84 or stalk him on Instagram @jc_burgess

Army

Retiring E-9 shocked to discover private sector has no seats at table for abrasive, stupid people who stay around for long enough

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CAMP COURTNEY, Okinawa — Retiring Headquarters Battalion Sgt. Maj. Joe Perkins expressed outrage and disgust on the hallowed literary digest LinkedIn over the lack of high-pay, high-power jobs available for veterans with no discernible skills aside from interrupting loudly and expressing themselves incoherently, sources confirmed today.

Perkins elaborated to reporters on the lack for opportunity for “real hard chargers” as he plans to transition to life in the civilian world.

“It’s just plain dumb,” he barked in a raspy voice scarred by decades of smoking Marlboro reds, his overly aggressive high-and-tight sitting atop a beet-red face. “Can you honestly look me in the eye and tell me that these corporations don’t need someone with no real job description to walk around, disrespect their superiors in public, tell stories about lifing staff sergeants, and have temper tantrums over seemingly small mistakes?”

Perkins seemed to be having trouble articulating his value added to would-be employers.

“I went to one place, got out of my car, and immediately said, ‘Oh. My. God.’ People were walking all over the parking lot without reflective belts and most of them without buddies. People walking on grass. I stormed right into the CEO’s office and said, ‘Listen sir, you need me here to tighten this shit up ricky-ticky, roger?’”

John Evans, CEO of service supply company ServiceCorp, found Perkins’ behavior appalling for an industry that does not pay people to spend 15 minutes correcting junior workers on executing a proper salute.

“I thought maybe a crazy person or a bum with a weird haircut had come into our building,” Evans said. “He was grabbing people’s laptops and throwing them, screaming ‘tie your shit down!’”

Perkins storied career includes one six-month deployment to Kosovo, and people in his current workplace lovingly refer to him as “worthless sack of shit” and “fuckface.”

“Anyone out their want to support a real VETRAN??!? Years of leadership experience & maintaining the standard r a linkedin clik away!!!!1,” he wrote, wrapping up his post.

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News

Senator proudly cites DNA test to prove he’s nearly 1 percent veteran

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BOSTON — Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Dickard Rosenthal has released the results of genetic testing to add legitimacy to his claim that he is “basically a veteran” and “should be treated as such”.

The DNA test shows that he has a distant grandparent that may have possibly fought in the Thirty Years War, the French Revolution, or was a member of a Mongol horde terrorizing eastern Europe in the 13th century, Roesnthal said in a press release and a subsequent CNN-sponsored town hall event.

“I am proud to show the American people, and especially Donald Trump, that I am indeed pretty much a veteran, and the sacrifices on behalf of my great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great (possibly) grandMOTHER’s (sic) service, between 300 and 1000 years ago, should not go unrecognized, or unrewarded,” Rosenthal’s press release reads.

“I am proud to possibly be tangentially related to someone who may have served something somewhere,” he added.

Rosenthal, a progressive firebrand widely considered to be a front-runner in the Democratic Party for the 2020 presidential primary, has faced repeated criticism for his decades-old claim of veteran status.

Records indicate the senator used his claim to be a veteran as a means to gain crucial status within a minority group as he applied to prestigious positions at Ivy League institutions and subsequently in his successful Senate run.

“Frankly, my previously uncorroborated claims were all I needed to be a veteran. But with this DNA test, I can now conclusively say I am distantly related to a veteran, which is basically the same as being one. It is now the responsibility of Donald Trump and his Republican allies to prove that I am not,” Rosenthal said.

Blondes Over Baghdad contributed to this report.

Image courtesy of the Department of Defense.

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Army

Former PT stud now lives in barn

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CLARKSBURG, W. Va. — A retired 82nd Airborne soldier who was once known for having the fastest two-mile run time in his battalion currently lives in a barn, horses confirmed today.

Thomas Chatterton, 32, of Clarksburg, entered basic training at Fort Benning in 2004, where instructors quickly noticed his speed and endurance on the track, said one horse who lives in the barn with Chatterton.

“We do three things around here. We run fast, eat oats, and we piss all over the floor. Anyone who wants to be a part of that, well, we’re happy to have you! Damn happy! We certainly don’t discriminate based on race, gender, orientation, or ability to take shits so big that a team of professionals has to come clean them up with snow shovels,” he said.

Chatterton got serious about running in middle school and remained dedicated in high school, according to his mother.

“Tommy was always a fast kid,” said Wendy Chatterton. “His 1600-meter time is still the state record for boys under 14. He went through the usual phases high school boys go through, you know. He grew his hair out into an enormous tail he could flap at flies, he slept standing up.”

She added: “I have to admit, though, we were somewhat surprised when he began soiling his pants wherever he was standing.”

Horses claim that Chatterton’s dedication has inspired them to be better competitors on the track.

“Tom’s an athlete through and through. Incredible focus,” said one horse who has raced with Chatterton. “Back at the barn, he’s the nicest guy you’ve ever met. But, the moment that gun goes off and all the other horses blow immediately past him, he’s all business.”

At 32 years old, Chatterton is a bit of an anomaly on the track, according to Crackling Thunder, a gray-spotted horse. Especially, he said, after a horrific trampling accident that occurred last year.

“The average life-span of a horse is about 25-30 years, so Tom’s really got guts to be mixing it up with these younger studs,” Thunder told reporters. “We take injuries pretty seriously here. They can mean life or death. After he got trampled that last time, I knew he was having some second thoughts.”

Video of the incident, which happened at the Hollywood Casino’s Charles Town Race Track near Charles Town, West Virginia, gained popularity after airing on America’s Funniest Home Videos, said one horse who was there.

“Oh, it was awful,” he said. “Here’s a competitor who only draws breath out of the love of the sport, and these jackals are putting slide whistle and boing-boing sound effects on the video of him getting trampled by 16 race horses charging at full speed? It makes me sick.”

Horses say that Chatterton wasn’t fazed by the incident, though, and his recovery has gone well.

Although he declined to speak to Duffel Blog reporters for this article, he did release a statement through his trainer, telling fans that any paper mail they send him is usually eaten or used as bedding by other horses.

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Air Force

Nike apologizes for forgetting military monopoly on sacrifice

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BEAVERTON, Ore. — Nike has issued a public apology to the military community after creating an advertisement featuring the text “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything,” over a picture of a football player who is not a military veteran, sources confirmed today.

“We completely forgot that the only sacrifice that means anything is that of our brave men and women in uniform,” Nike CEO Mark Parker wrote in a tweet on Thursday, days after a backlash erupted over an ad campaign that featured Colin Kaepernick.

“I failed to remember that until I saw a meme where conservatives appropriated the image of fallen warrior Pat Tillman’s face in our ad instead of Kaepernick’s. It highlighted how mutually exclusive their two sacrifices are and emphasized the military monopoly on sacrifice.”

When reached for further comment, Parker also cited the success of images and videos on social media protesting Nike’s ad by showing service members cutting the Nike swoosh logo off their apparel.

“It’s a well-known fact that companies can’t bear to watch customers disrespect their symbol,” he told reporters. “To put it into perspective, it’s almost as painful for us to witness as it is for others to see someone kneel during the national anthem.”

Parker followed up with another tweet after his original apology was well received.

“Thank you for leveraging the image of a deceased hero to remind Nike and its leadership of the only manifestation of bravery and expression of patriotism, which is service in the armed forces. I’m sure Corporal Tillman would appreciate you speaking up on his behalf in a hotly debated topic like this.”

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Army

Dishonor Flight brings veterans back to the bar tabs they never settled

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c5 galaxy

WASHINGTON — An innovative new veteran’s non-profit is using private donations and support from several national airlines to reunite veterans with the shady shit they did in the past in their final days, sources confirmed today.

The program, called Dishonor Flight, has now helped more than 200 World War II veterans get back to the bar tabs they walked out on and women they lied to in order to sleep with.

“It was so inspirational,” said Kaycee Spisak, a flight attendant for Southwest Airlines who volunteered during a Dishonor Flight coming in from Duluth, Iowa. “These brave veterans, mostly in wheelchairs, were greeted by literally dozens of bartenders, bookies, pimps and landlords. That kind of passion is really inspiring.”

Dishonor Flight was off to a shaky start after several older veteran service organizations like the U.S.O. and Honor Flight refused to support the cause.

“I’m glad I did it,” said Battle of the Bulge Veteran Edwin Puller. “I heard about that Honor Flight, but it’s not worth missing 60 Minutes to see a duck pond in D.C. a bunch of no-good politicians built. But when Dishonor Flight called and reminded me I never settled up with my landlord at Camp Lewis when I left in ‘42, I got a good chuckle out of that. Good luck outliving me, chumps.”

Puller was shocked and surprised when not only his landlord, but a card shark and phony life insurance salesman were there to greet him, too.

“I wanted my grandchildren to see this. Grandpa went for one wild ride in ’42. After all the issued benzos and PX beer I’d roll into town and get deep into USO bitches. I’m surprised these are the only people I owe money. They must not know about the jazz clubs I snuck into.”

The Dishonor Flight ended with the old veterans and retired creditors kicking back some shots, reliving old times, and pointing out the errors in Band of Brothers.

Dishonor Flight plans to expand in the near future to set up flights to help Vietnam vets meet their middle-aged kids in Saigon and smoke a joint together, according to officials.

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Coast Guard

Coast Guard nervous over upcoming disabled veterans sailing race

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cg disabled

MONTEREY, Calif. — Local Coast Guard officials say they are a bit nervous about an upcoming event involving dozens of disabled military veteran racers competing in a Wounded Warrior Sailing Race, sources confirmed today.

“If we’re going to start together then we’re going to end together,” said Marcus Distelrath, a former U.S. Marine who lost both his arms in an IED blast, before starting the race.

“Um…yeah, about that,” said Petty Officer Stacy Hearn, a Boatswain’s Mate at Station Monterey. “We’re really supportive but this seems a bit dangerous and excessive. I mean, there’s one guy who’s using just his teeth to handle the lines.”

She added: “I’m pretty sure he’s just a life jacket with a head.”

Distelrath is part of the veteran non-profit organization, Sailing For Freedom, which provides veterans with sailing lessons as they begin their transition from military to civilian life.

“I’ve always wanted to do a sailing race, but I was always uneasy and terrified to do it on my own,” said Matthew Estes, who has been learning how to sail for the past six months despite having lost his legs and his right eye in a fire fight in the Middle East. “But Marcus has really given me the bravery that I can do whatever I want despite my disability.”

“Look, we’re not going to cancel the event,” said Hearn with her hands positioned in a defensive manner. “But let’s just say we’re going to be like a parent watching their toddler tightrope walk for the first time.”

Bob Cohen, who’s also a disabled U.S. Marine, has post-traumatic stress disorder and suffers from epileptic seizures.

“My brain just kind of lights off like a fireworks factory catching fire, but I’m still physically fit, and there are veterans that are perfectly capable of doing a race like this. Just because my mind is like a spastic Tasmanian devil, I would like to help these vets achieve something and not have their injury define them,” Cohen adds.

Some of the veterans will have their service animals with them in case they suffer from an episode that impacts their ability to sail.

“Oh, Christ,” added Hearn.

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Pentagon

VA Study: Getting shot in head may lead to brain injury in some troops

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doctor

WASHINGTON — A new report released by the Department of Veterans Affairs has revealed that some troops who have been shot in the head may suffer mild to severe brain injury in certain cases.

The comprehensive study took chief researcher Dr. Rich Meecham and his team decades to perform, and Meecham says there is a chance the results may impact the disability ratings of a small number of qualified veterans.

“We looked at the data from those troops who have suffered gunshot wounds to the head in the past, and we determined there is at least a moderate chance of those patients suffering some sort of cranial injury,” said Meecham. “This is especially true in those without proper diet and exercise.”

Meecham added that tobacco use and violation of grooming regulations greatly increased the risk of suffering an injury after receiving a bullet in the skull. He and his team pored over hundreds of files and X-ray images to determine just what the side effects of such an injury could be. Their ultimate goal is to establish a set of guidelines for diagnosing and treating gunshot wounds to the head, but they say the project could take decades.

Currently, the only VA-approved treatment is Motrin and hydration.

“You can see with this patient there is clearly something wrong with the front part of the brain area,” Meecham told reporters, pointing to what was clearly an X-ray of a left foot. “That can’t be good.”

The study has also looked at previous research that certain at-risk populations of service members who step on IEDs may face potential trauma to their lower extremities.

“The results are inconclusive, but it does appear that stepping on IEDs may lead to foot and leg injuries, and even death,” he added. “Especially if you don’t blouse your boots.”

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Veterans

American Flag wears hat with a veteran patch on it

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FORT BRAGG, N.C. — Since separating from the Army after three years of guidon duty, a local American flag has been seen sporting a hat with a patch in the shape of a veteran on it, sources say.

The flag says the hat helps signal to others that he is both a patriot and a veteran, and that when people see it they know he is deserving of their respect.

“I never go out in public without my operator hat and 5.11 cargo pants,” said the flag, who spent the majority of his enlistment in a supply closet on Fort Bragg. “You never know when the situation is gonna turn tactical.”

The flag claims that, in addition to the subdued coyote brown veteran patch he typically wears on his hat, he also carries infrared-reflective veteran patches on him at all times, in case he needs to signal a helicopter for a night extract from the local mall or Food Lion. He keeps his “flagout bag,” which contains essential flag survival items like extra swivel snaps and a reinforced brass guidon ferrule, on him at all times, too, he says.

“I flew colors for an SF unit one time, so I’m basically an operator,” said the flag, who has grown a beard and gotten dog tags tattooed on his bottom stripe since leaving the service. “And I never go anywhere without my Z87.1-rated Oakley flag case.”

Lieutenant Dan contributed reporting.

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