color: SOME SOLDIER'S MOM: Sons, Saddam, Women & Pepsi

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Sons, Saddam, Women & Pepsi

A Wonderful Son
Been traveling… visiting the oldest son who graduated from college this weekend SUMMA CUM LAUDE (WHOOO HOO!) while fulfilling his fulltime duties in the US Navy, including a few short-term deployments… and selling his house… and getting ready for a PCS (permanent change of duty station) this week… He’s an amazing son… and sailor. We’re so very proud to call him son, and the Navy is lucky to have such a dedicated defender! Bravo Zulu Sailor!

The Son in Iraq
It’s been nine days since we heard from the Army son. I received an IM from one of his buds – one of “my guys”… just a “Hi, Mom.”
So I respond, “Everybody OK there?”
Soldier: Yeah, everyone’s cool mom… your son hasn’t been on lately 'cause he’s been away.
Mom: Away? Good or bad away? Like jail away LOL? or a mission away?
Soldier: I saw him today and he seems like he’s doing good… he loves the guys he’s with so I’d say good… good away LOL
Mom: a perm re-assignment or temp?
Soldier: just temp… he’s just helping another plt [platoon]… and R… they needed more man power
Mom: kk [OK]... he sure likes going out... I know... you do too... well if you see him, tell him to check in when he can... we worry (of course LOL)
Soldier: he'll be back in a few days and I’m sure getting on the internet will be the first thing he does LOL you know how he loves his technology! LOL

I think I’m glad I didn’t know he was outside the wire or I’d have been crazy with extra worry at every news report… Now I only have to be extra worried for a few days. I won’t sleep now until I know he’s safe.

The Saga of Saddam
Leaving aside the Geneva Convention issues… Let’s see if I’ve got this right: Saddam is the guy who had men, women and children raped, maimed, tortured and butchered and had it all filmed so that he and his sons and henchmen could view it later for their enjoyment? And some people are outraged about a couple of pictures of Saddam in his undies? Not me. Fully clothed or in his undies, he’s still a vile, ugly cuss.

Women At War
I am a WILD WOMAN about this! What century is Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) living in? The House Armed Services Committee Chairman pushed through legislation that would require the Army to prohibit women from serving in any unit that provides support to combat battalions. While not retroactive, the measure, if enacted, will block the assignment of women to thousands of positions that are now open to them. This simpleton’s justification for this Neanderthal inspired legislation? "The American people have never wanted to have women in combat and this reaffirms that policy.” I have news for you: he’s not speaking for this American, Kemo Sabe.

Then we get this: Subcommittee Chairman John M. McHugh (R-N.Y.) said the legislation is aimed at enforcing a "no women in combat" policy, and denied it is a "Neanderthal initiative to keep women out of the Army." Deny all you want, sweetheart… it’s Neanderthal.

There was a day not so long ago when any woman that wanted to serve in the military could be a clerk/secretary or a nurse. All other career options were off limits. Then the military – under pressure from women – slowly opened other career paths to women. Not only have women filled positions as pilots, mechanics, avionics technicians, cooks, truck drivers, fuel handlers, supply officers, medics, and military police (to name but a few), but they have done so brilliantly, honorably, bravely – hell, heroically! They will tell you that they want and need to be there. They train just as hard as the men. They work just as hard as the men. They make it possible for MALE soldiers, sailors and airmen to do what they do. They don’t just serve the military – they serve the American people.

To exclude or prohibit women from filling these 22,000 positions (just 2% of the military force) would not only be a great disservice to the men in our armed services, it would be a great wrong to the people of this country – not just the women. The positions these women now fill so skillfully not only support the defenders of our country, they provide these women with skills that in the civilian world pay significantly better than traditional female positions.

As we all know, not everyone that joins the military does so as a career. Many soldiers come in to serve and to acquire training (marketable job skills) or money for education, or both and stay just long enough to earn those benefits. To deny women these support positions denies them the opportunity afforded male service members to make a decent living post-service. These women aren’t blind to the fact that they will serve in dangerous situations. Terrorists didn't discriminate at the World Trade Center, they don't discriminate on the basis of sex as they wage war on civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan and other places in the world, and neither should we discriminate in the war on terror.
Is there a possibility these women could be killed? Yes. Since the Iraq war began two years ago, 35 U.S. women have died and 271 have been wounded. But should we protect and care about these soldiers more because they have ovaries? What about the 1,763 men killed in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan? Do Messrs. Hunter and McHugh portend to tell mothers that their sons' lives are worth less? Or just that women’s lives are more valuable? No one wants any of our soldiers to die… men or women.

There are courageous women in this world who want to be soldiers. They volunteered. We should not go back to a time where we felt that women needed to be “protected” from the world… Congress should butt out and let the Army and the rest of the military do their jobs.
Pepsi V. Coke
The people in my family have always been Pepsi people. In fact, when my dear mother died, she was buried with a can of Pepsi – her constant companion. We won’t be drinking Pepsi again for a long time, nor will we be buying any other Pepsi products as a result of PepsiCo’s President and CFO’s unpatriotic -- and IMO anti-American -- remarks at the commencement of Columbia Business School last week. If you haven’t read those outrageous remarks look here:
http://www.pepsico.com/Speech-ColumbiaBusinessSchool.pdf . To read the story further and what’s been happening check out THIRDWAVEDAVE
http://thirdwavedave.blogspot.com/

Copyright 2005. All rights reserved.

2 Comments:

At 5/22/2005 5:20 AM , Blogger Mom said...

Love this post. It is good to know your son is doing good. We have like views on woman in combat. And I am glad I have paid my money into Coke all this time.
" Behind Every Good Man is an Even Better Woman"-who said this?

 
At 5/23/2005 7:30 AM , Blogger Call Me Grandma said...

Congrats to the Navy son. Glad the army son is safe.
You go girl. I agree 100% about the women. "I am woman hear me roar". and you roared so well, great post!

 

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