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Link Posted: 5/3/2004 9:40:08 AM EDT
I went to see Apocalyse Now when it first came out with a couple of long-haired dope smoking friends of mine (SoCal right after we had graduated from high school).

We were at the old theaters off of Chapman in Orange.
A lot of the people watching the film were Jarheads from Tustin and El Toro.

It was great, almost all of us were cheering and yelling during the good parts.

There was a couple of guys who were sitting behind us who made a couple shitty remarks about the movie, the war and about the Marines.
At one point me and my buddy Mike (both of us sons of retired Marines) turned around and told them to keep their fucking mouths shut, which they did for the rest of the movie.

After the movie a couple of the Marines came up to us and thanked us for shutting them up.
A couple of the older Marines were pleased that a couple of long hairs stood up for them, one of them even tried to talk us into enlisting.

At one point I couldn't relate. Little story...At the end of my basic training, I got my base pass and went to see this new movie called "Saving Private Ryan" at the theater. I was waiting in line with these dirtbags and they were going to see the movie with me. Well, I thought that after the movie, most people would warm up to the sacrifice that the soldiers made and still make, but NO. I was walking down the hall after the movie(I was in uniform), and all I heard from the dirtbags that went in with me and many other people was that it was all bullshit and they said that our guys deserved to die for being where they don't belong, etc. I was deeply, deeply insulted

I grew up on stories of how the vets from the wars were the best people and their sacrifice was so that I could be here today. Now I hear this garbage coming out of peoples mouths while a member of the military is walking with them out of a very patroitic movie pissed me off (This all happened during the Clinton era mind you). What was I? I was invisible, and according to Clinton policy I wasn't needed. So I felt like the rest of the country let me down as well as the vets before me. I grew to hate civilians and didn't leave the base for some time since civvies pissed me off with their ignorance towards me and my comrades in arms. I didn't talk to civilians, eat with them, look at them, or watch tv. That lasted until Bush got into office. Then I knew that something may change for us. No more neglect, no more being invisible.

Then Sept 11th happened. We were once again put into the front pages and called "heroes". Humph! Were was all that love and respect during Clintons reign, huh? Hypocrites!!!!!!!! Where were those letter from kids telling me how much they love their country befor that? Where was the flag waving on tv, and the thanks from strangers? I felt like those old feelings of resentment were coming back up when I saw how everybody got on the "support our troops in Afganistan" wagon. The military isn't a bunch of rent-a-heros to kill the boogie man, they are ALWAYS heroes. Damn civilians I calmed down after I got out of the service, but as you can tell, I will never forget being treated like a piece of shit by the average joe for being in the military.

Link Posted: 5/3/2004 5:20:30 PM EDT
That is great to hear! People in uniform really can't be in shouting matches with civilians, since they have to represent the military in a good manner at all times. Maybe now that I am an IRR civilian I can do it for them.
Link Posted: 5/3/2004 5:46:07 PM EDT
I have found a few twenty year types at the airport that still have the built in confidence (ie. I flew A-10s or F-15s and therefore know more about airplane mechanics than you do). They do not realize that they do not have to impress us with what they know. They usually make fools of themselves in the process. From observation I have learned that four year military mechanics know nothing other than the one item they were specialized in. They get pencil whipped into a civilian aircraft mechanic job and literally know nothing about the equipment the are presented for repair. Some admit to the deficeincy, others really screw up a lot of equipment. As with all things in life, it depends on the individual. This is one of the reasons that I believe that military service may provide someone the opportunity to be a hero but it does not make you become hero material. Planerench out.
Link Posted: 5/3/2004 6:25:26 PM EDT


"Military types, ever feel like you no longer can relate to civilians?"
I am a "civilian" and I have a friend that lost a leg in Viet Nam. He does'nt look down his nose at me, we are very good friends. I think the "I can't relate to civilians" is a mentality that is new to the current generation of (limited few) enlisted folks. It's funny what a uniform does to some people. Now I think I'll go put on my pilot uniform and go grocery shopping. Huuahhh!

Look around you.  The civilians have changed too.
You don't even have to be in the military to notice that.  You have to be careful saying anything about guns at all, or some soccer mom will "engage" you in lively debate.  God help you if somebody thinks you might have a rifle or a pistol in public, even cased/concealed.  You will probably find yourself talking to the cops because somebody got scared you were there to kill a bunch of people.
I've lost count of the people who are so afraid of guns that they can't even be in the same room with somebody who said the word.  This wasn't a problem when you had the majority of people understanding and respecting guns, and being relatively proficient with them.
You can tell that has been lost when damn near every antigunner you run into thinks that firing from the hip is the ideal stance, and has never heard of shouldering a rifle.
My conclusion?  It isn't the servicemen who changed.  Its the civilians.  More specifically, the civilians turned into sheep.
Link Posted: 5/3/2004 7:30:38 PM EDT

Well, it's a good thing all you "heros" look down on us so much. It will make it that much easier for you to turn your guns on us. Your "SS"mentality comes as no surprise to me. I served for 8 years in two services. They fed me that BS too. The only difference I suppose is that I have my own mind. I never lost sight of why I was serving.  You see, my mother was a civilian. My brothers and sisters are civilians. My best friends are civilians. Most of the people I love are civilians.  I never looked down on any of them. I never put myself above them. That's the general idea of serving your country.

Wound more than just a bit tight huh? Nobody is looking down on your mother, brothers and sisters. They ought to look down on my brother though as he deserves looking down upon as do some other people.

But then you lose as you brought up nazis - AR15.com rule one is always in effect.

I haven't been "fed" any BS and nor have I seen "them" feed anyone else BS either. Having a life might help but I really haven't been told shit about how to "feel" about shit. I've been told lots of stuff but never been told to hate or look down on civilians - fact is the Commander In Chief is a civilian as are the next two steps down the chain of command.

Of course we're not smart enough to figure anything out by ourselves now are we?
Link Posted: 5/3/2004 8:56:28 PM EDT
It was 1970 when I came back to the world.  We had been told stories of being spit upon at airports and such and were even encouraged to travel in civies to avoid such problems.  I took it personal when old friends and I didn't have much to talk about anymore as I thought they hated me for what I had been up to since we last saw each other.  I was wrong.   I related a story where I had blown a guys brains out the back of his head then my buddies and I high-fived and cheered each other over it.  It went over like a turd in a punchbowl around a bonfire and a couple of joints a year later when I was partying with friends.  It made perfect sense to me that we would do that.  To them their friend had come back a monster.

Today I have learned that you can't describe the color red to someone who is blind and thankfully I don't have to.
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