November 10th is the Marine Corp Birthday and November 11th is Veterans Day. On these two days I always reflect on my fathers career in the Army, where he served during WW II and later retired as a Colonel. I think of my first cousin, Freddie, who was killed in Vietnam, while I was in Vietnam. His death impacted my extended family, who has dearly missed him this last 52 years. I think of a high school buddy and fellow Marine, Boogie, who was haunted throughout his life with the experiences of the 1968 Tet offensive and battle of Khe Sahn. I think of John, Iraq War, a multiple amputee, who is embarrassed at how the Veterans Administration has treated him. I think of another Veteran, of Iraq, Willy, or Will Boy. Willy was like a son and his death drove home the meaning of heartache. They were Veterans, they took an OATH, gave their lives, body parts, or were mentally wounded for life. They were VETERANS, not suckers and loser’s, not draft dodgers, VETERANS.

I often ask myself how the hell I made it out of Vietnam. I did have kidney cancer, agent orange, and 14 shoulder operations with number 15 coming up Jan 8th. My VA claim is 53 years old and to this day I am fighting for previous claims. I tell you this because thousands of veterans are tied up in VA claims. They served but they are remembered only one day a year. Where are the politicians, judges, elected officials and concerned citizens the other 364 days a year?

This year I find myself wondering what has happened to the Democracy of the US. Not only the United States but Alabama and Fairhope. I see people supporting elected officials that have betrayed them. I see people believing things that are so untrue that it defies logic that anyone would believe it. I see people questioning our constitution, science, education and even common sense, instead believing social media and quoting it as if it were gospel.

In Alabama, number one in political corruption, the Judiciary is corrupted from the municipal courts to the Alabama Supreme Court. They all took an oath, that they have betrayed, however consider themselves “Christians”. These judges and attorneys today will take part in the remembrance of our veterans, for political points, not for the veterans service. Think of the hypocrisy!

Have we the citizens of the United States, forgotten just what Veterans Day represents? Are we so split down the middle in our thinking that we have put money and party before Democracy? Have we forgot the Veterans that gave their lives to preserve democracy? Today we remember the Veterans and celebrate a holiday. The problem is tomorrow we will remember the holiday and forget the veterans.

I celebrate these two days with pride and fully understand their history and measure. As a citizen of the United States I respect our flag and democracy. Democracy, is for all, and democracy is not easy, but our Constitution is our guide and when we question that, we are all losers.

Democracy is what the United States created and the world tries to copy. The presidential election and covid have divided us even more. Some people refuse to believe covid is real or the results of our Presidential election. Those same people do not understand democracy or the true meaning of Veterans day. Democracy starts with caring for others, when we care less about other people, in the U.S. and other countries, then we are turning our back on democracy.

Democracy is not easy, but it survives by the citizens of the country accepting tough challenges. In the past we accepted expert opinion, education, science and history. Our elections have been reported to the public by AP news since 1848. So here we are in 2020 saying a process we have practiced for 172 years is wrong.

As a Veteran and a Marine I salute all the present and past, men and women, that have served in the United States Armed Services.

As an Independent, I accept the Presidential results and foresee Biden topping 300 in electoral votes and more than 5 million popular votes.

As a concerned citizen I hope people will accept the dangers of covid and the fact that our consumer economic confidence will not reappear until covid is under control.

As a resident of Alabama I recognize the fact that our state is dead last in almost every category except political corruption, where we are number one. Baldwin County is the most corrupt county in Alabama and will remain so as long as it’s citizens have their heads in the sand.