Three of my brothers & several uncles & cousins are war veterans. They were all working class kids not eligible for draft exemptions dispensed to the well-heeled. They all paid a hefty price emotionally & some physically; only one became antiwar.
My brothers were naive rookies who went to war with heads stuffed full of patriotism & the romance & machismo of war portrayed in John Wayne movies. They came back with heavy hearts & great confusion from killing–& in some undefinable way, corrupted. The brothel, attached like a barnacle to the military, will do that.
It’ll be a cold day in hell before I ever condemn my brothers for participating in war but I’ll be damned if I’ll ever glorify military service as “fighting for our freedoms.”
Memorial Day is not a time to celebrate the slaughter of other peoples or to vilify (or glorify) veterans but to commit to building opposition to US wars. That is the least young men & women deserve from us.