Today’s Veterans on the March was a very special event. Although the turnout was small, the crowd was solidly a veteran one. The rally lasted more than two hours, but people did not drift off, attesting to the great line-up of speakers and musicians. The Fugs’ exorcism of the White House was a high point at the end. Chanting “Out, Demons, Out!” the crowd shook its fingers toward 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. The march to the White House was greeted with supportive honks, even from those who were stuck in traffic waiting for us to clear an intersection. At the White House, we had a few more speakers and closed with Holly Near’s hopeful and uplifting “I Am Willing.” We got good press, including one reporter who was in the White House at the daily press briefing, which ended early because Sean Spicer apparently got irritated by some of the questions. He said they heard a noise outside and he came out to see what was going on and ended up filming us as we ended our event. Photos are here and here by Ellen Davidson.
Veterans For Peace Portland Chapter 72 members, at the Vietnam Veterans of Oregon Memorial.
Vietnam Veterans of Oregon Memorial
4000 Southwest Canyon Road, Portland, OR 97221
VFP members who had every right as any other veteran or civilian in this public event to participate in this supposed solemn occasion were not welcome by the annual organizers of the Vietnam Veterans of Oregon Memorial.
I have been at these Vietnam Veterans of Oregon Memorial Day events over the years, including just last year, this so-called “solemn respect for the fallen”, I am sorry to say, has done due disrepect to the soldiers whose lives were sacrificed on the altar of War. They replay the myths and lies that drove the draft and those who joined, as they invent new heroic tales as if to grant sainthood to the warriors whose names are etched into the black granite walls.
Don’t get me wrong, as a Viet Nam Combat Marine Veteran every name of these fallen should not be forgotten, their families have lost a loved one and their grief never fades and thus are due respect and much honor, that should not be cheapened by glorifying war.
While the organizers sanctify these proceedings like ancient priests of the Greek and Roman Empires as they glorify the dead as heroes, blessed by the gods for their bravery in battle, the Oregon Air National Guard Flyover at 11:15 am adds that dramatic thunderous blessing from the heavens above.
The proceedings fail to mention the bombs, rockets, mortars, grenades, machine guns, and airstrikes of missiles and flesh burning napalm these brave men (under orders from above) rained down on innocent civilians or the herbicides including Agent Orange Dioxin that poisoned US Soldiers and Vietnamese alike, a poison that has killed millions, created cancerous illnesses and half a million horrific birth defects, the affects which continues to this day.
There is something terribly wrong when Veterans For Peace are not welcome at a memorial day event honoring our fallen soldiers, veterans who stand fast that wars should be fought no more, no more of our youth should to be sacrificed for fictitious gods, their lying priests, nor for purpose to fill the treasuries of Empires, Corporate Empires and the War Profiteers of the Military Industrial Complex.
Thus I am proud of my brave VFP Colleagues who were not deterred by the shunning of the organizers but stood fast on the sidewalks and found that those attending had no problem at all, no negative comments, all where positive or inquisitive of the Vietnam Full Disclosure T-shirt that our chapter president Jenika Sharon wore.
VFP member Jamie Skinner is interviewed in video an does an excellent job explaining VFP’s reason for being present at this commemoration on Memorial Day.
Memorial Day – May 29 2017 – 11 AM
Veterans For Peace – Chapter 72
Portland Oregon – Oregon Vietnam Veterans Memorial
Video by Joe Anybody
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