Freedom Isn't Free

Freedom Isn't Free

01 August 2014

R and R

   R&R.  Rest and Relaxation is what it usually means and its important to all of us.  We all have to kick back and take it easy.  In this blog we're going to talk about R&R, in some different ways.
   First, lets talk about all of the politicians in Congress.  They passed the joint house bill on "fixing" the VA Scandal.  Soon, those politicians will be enjoying some R&R of their own.  The question of how well deserved it is may depend on your view of the American government. They, however, will pend their 5 week vacation either campaigning for re-election or kicking back somewhere.  No doubt when they come back to Washington, D.C. they will have forgotten (like the media and probably a lot of the American people) about the Veterans Administration. After all, its fixed, right?
   No way.  Although former P&G exec Robert McDonald has also been confirmed to be the next Secretary for the VA (see, I told ya Congress was busy!) I am sure it will take him longer than 5 weeks to "fix" the VA Scandal.  A lot longer.  The VA has been broken longer than some of the Veterans who are now using it have been alive.  We will keep an eye on McDonald's progress.  Ansd we will keep an eye on those who obstruct his progress. 

   Unfortunately, I know of one service member who isn't on R&R.  That is USMC SGT Andrew Tahmooressi.  He's still locked up in a Mexican jail.  According to his current lawyer, the previous lawyers he had missed a window of opportunity for his freedom.  You can check out that story, and catch up on what is going on in his case, here.
   Efforts continue to help secure his release.  This ordeal has been tremendous for the Marine and his family, as you can imagine.  There have been various rallies and shows of support all across America.  Jill Tahmooressi, the mother of SGT Andrew Tahmooressi, will be at once such rally today in Omaha, NE at 6p.m.  For more details, check this news article. Honor Air, the creator of the Honor Flights to our nation's War Memorials, has gotten involved in Tahmooressi's cause as well.  I hope to have more about their involvement soon.


   Carpe Diem.  That Latin phrase is the inspiration for many.  Take life and live it to the max.  Literally it means to seize the day, and that is what one group is doing for our Veterans, although maybe not grammatically. 
   The group is called Operation SEAS The Day.  The SEAS part is very important here.  Its not just a play on words but a reference to what the group does.  In September of 2013 they brought 25 wounded Veterans’ and their families to a beach front area in Delaware in order to show support for the returning wounded servicemen/women for their service to our country and the sacrifice each of them had made during that service.  It was a tremendous success.  Some of the Veterans, who were selected for the experience by the Wounded Warrior Project, the USO & the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes, called the week at Bethany Beach “magical” and “life-changing” according to the group’s website. 
   This year 30 wounded Veterans and their families will spend the week of September 2-7 at Bethany Beach, DE in homes & condos  donated by local residents and homeowners.  Local businesses have also jumped onboard to donate services/goods for the families who will get a chance to SEAS the Day!  Once again, 25 Veterans and their families have been selected and 5 families have been picked to from the inaugural beach week event to come back as “alumni”. 
   Please check out the group and, if you can, show your appreciation for what they are doing to help our wounded Heroes.
   That is all.
This blog is about Veteran Issues and I hope to cover not just the problems that our Veterans have, but the good things as well.  If you or someone you know is involved in an organization that is hosting an event for our Veterans (a motorcycle ride for homeless Veterans, your American Legion is hosting a crisis center for the VA, etc.) I'd love to hear about it and possibly interview your organization for the Citizen-Soldier Blog.  Please feel free to email me at

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