first published on July 5, 2016 by Josh
First and foremost, I would like to state that I am nothing more than a combat veteran, and an internet blogger in the military community. I spend a lot of time searching the internet for interesting military news stories, and outstanding combat footage from around the world. With that said, I think it’s important to take a good hard look at this screen shot of a post I found on Reddit this morning.
This is what we have done to ourselves as a veteran community. Certain individuals within our space have made it an absolute point to leverage their “PTSD” so hard, that we now have an entire section of civilians who believe we are all nothing more than broken shells. Our minds and bodies are so torn from war, that we can’t even do something as simple as celebrate the Fourth of July, because fireworks are just too terrifying for us.
Certain individuals have gone as far as putting signs in their front yards on holidays. “Please be courteous with your fireworks, a combat veteran lives here.”
Is this the image you really want to paint yourself with? Is this really the best you can do for yourself in life? Do you really want to sit laid up in your house 24/7 – 365 cashing your “PTSD” disability check from here on out? If the answers to those questions are yes, then you really need to head back to the drawing board and rethink your life decisions. You are capable of much more then that. The rest of the veteran community expects more of you.
I’m not denying the existence of PTSD, or saying that dudes who really really got into the shit on a daily basis weren’t impacted by the actions they took, or things they saw. I’m simply stating that a majority of the individuals making these claims have a few simple things in common.
I’ve checked through the profiles of at least 50 guys who posted to the company who makes these signs. They all have a few things in common. None of them have a single image of them outside of the wire in any country that has had an active conflict. None of them have a single image of them in a dress uniform sporting a medal for valor, or even a badge or ribbon signifying that the individual has seen combat in the first place. And, not a single one of them appears to have served in a true ground combat capacity, where they may have seen enough combat to warrant such a reaction to fireworks.
Obviously, there may be some anomaly’s here and there, but that’s not entirely the point. The point is that dudes who missed out on the actual rigors of combat are going out and making the civilian populace think that veterans are broken. While in the short-term this serves their own personal pity parties, in the long-term it destroys the reputation of the veteran community. Knock that shit off yesterday ass-clowns. You’re making us all look like broken cry babies because you want attention.
Employers are looking at veterans like we are broken, because some people want instant gratification and recognition for the time they spent eating at the DFAC. Meanwhile veterans who actually suffer from real post traumatic stress disorder are dealing with their demons on their own, or in small trusted groups. Those guys are becoming better, more well-rounded individuals for coping with, and facing their demons. None of that matters though, because all civilians see is a liability because of your attention-seeking, self-serving attitudes.
Grow up. Don’t be the stereotype. We’re better then this.