Eras of War
It can be troublesome justifying valor, honor, bravery, and veteran status throughout the different wars throughout history. There is respect to be had for each warfare a veteran endured, but it is not a competition. Scars are reminders, but why is it human nature to turn them into competitions? Some would say that scars are like trophies that should be carried with pride. But pride and pain seem to go hand in hand in a lot of ways. This is when a lot of grey areas come about, splitting up the veteran community.
Pride is important but what really lies at the bottom of truth? Pride in serving for the same country we all claim to remain at ready to lay our life down for? World War I & II, Vietnam, Korea all played an important role in American history, and many are aware that the troops were badly mistreated and unappreciated when they returned home. PTSD was not a topic understood nor up for discussion during those wars, but why do we allow stigmas to blindly allow our veterans to hurt in silence today?
The warfare alone is indescribable for our generations today, and I would never pretend to "understand" that at their level. HOWEVER, #VeteransUnite is a hashtag I use often because when it comes to mental and emotional states, as pawns in war, we share similarities.
Depression and anxiety do not recognize skin color, religion, opinions, or politics....when your brain spirals into a darkness where you can no longer decipher how to communicate to those around you--including friends and family--suicide ideations begin to seep in. Now, whether suicide is truly "cowardice" or not is always up for debate, but does it really matter? Whether you're right or wrong, a family just lost a son or daughter...a wife or husband...
What I find more bothersome out of all the stereotypes and stigmas I have seen or heard about within the veteran community is what TRULY MATTERS gets brushed aside without barely a mention.
Social media fuels the confusion and misguided passions that lead our people--including veterans--astray. Okay, so you fought with someone that suicide isn't a cowardice act...now what? Did it bring that individual back to life? Did their family get to hug them again? Don't fall for irrelevant discussions but open up to those willing to MAKE A CHANGE.
If you feel that you survived a war that no one talks about, TAKE INITIATIVE. Generations to come NEED to hear and know exactly what it was like---not Hollywood's perspective. Don't argue if the war(s) you've seen were worse off than those that have taken place in the last few years....Remind active military, veterans, and the American people that it was REAL for thousands who died on and off the battlefield. You don't have to be afraid, discouraged, or feel unworthy...many of us have felt that and it would be nice to open to someone who gets it.
~ Keep fighting the fight ~