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A sincere and personal Memorial Day "Thank You" to our nation’s heroes

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Too often during our challenges and struggles to express our self politically we end up bastardizing the service of our own family members and friends who unselfishly risk life and limb in order to protect our nation’s security and economic interests.

It’s always debatable whether or not the nature of their service is to protect the interests of the American people or the interests of trillion dollar corporations that rake in hundreds of billions of dollars in the name of “righteous wars”.

However, whether you stand politically to the “Left” or you stand politically to the “Right”, it is undeniable that our country’s military warriors serve with a clear conscious believing with all their heart that they’re (1) fighting for the preservation of liberty and justice, (2) fighting to save the life of their buddies and (3) fighting to one day soon return home alive and “whole” to their own family and friends.

In truth the far majority of America’s military warriors are men and women of uncompromising honor and uncommon valor and our country owes them a debt of gratitude for their countless sacrifices. Not only do they deserve our sincerest admiration, respect and support, but they also deserve medical facilities that are not decrepit, understaffed and ill-managed. Let’s not just give lip service to our wounded warriors during the lifespan of a “news cycle”, rather let us vociferously demand from our elected officials better / professional treatment for ALL of our veterans.

In observance of this extended holiday weekend, I’d like to take a moment to tip my hat to the memory of my Uncle Roy who fought courageously in Patton’s Army for a Jim Crow United States that never appreciated his blood, sweat and tears that he left behind on the battlefields of Europe.

Additionally I’d like to salute my Uncle Edison who served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War and witnessed first-hand the genesis of forced integration in the U.S. Armed Forces; after 82 years of living most of his life in Northern Mississippi, he is still a warrior at heart and I often call upon him for sound advice. Thank you Uncle Edison for being the upright man that you are, it’s an honor to be your nephew.

And last I’d like to honor the memory of my father who served 20 years in the U.S. Navy during an era in America when most Black men in the Navy could only serve as cooks and personal valets to the ship’s captain; by the way, daddy was a machinist mate and a leader of men and women, it is he who taught me to lead by example. In hindsight I fully realize that it’s because of my family’s innumerable personal sacrifices to America that I am able to stand firmly on my two feet as an African American and demand all the rights as promised to me in the U.S. Constitution.

I too am an American veteran who has been tried and never denied and I will not be undervalued, underestimated nor will I be marginalized by racists, bigots, crooked politicians and puppet-masters who wish to strip away the rights of tens of millions of bonafide Americans solely for their own amusement and benefit.

In closing, I’d like to wish everyone a very happy Memorial Day who respectfully honors the memory of incalculable numbers of Americans of all races, religions, gender and sexual preference who honorably served their country and have given their very best to represent the country they so dearly love, they are without question the best of the best that America has to offer and they deserve to be treated as the heroes that they are.

To the fallen heroes…sleep well, you deserve peace. To the living heroes, live long and live strong it is your courage and commitment that allows the naysayers in America to sleep well at night and although they may not appreciate you, I do. Hoorah !!

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