Thurman P. Woodfork

ON GOD AND COUNTRY

Thurman P. Woodfork: On God and CountryI put in a lot of years doing my duty to God and Country. Matter of fact, I did well over the prescribed twenty required for military retirement. Along the way, there were good times and bad. I boogied my booty off in places as disparate as Barcelona and Bangkok, Billings and Biloxi. I also almost froze said booty off on the frigid tundra of Alaska within sight of Russian Siberia (the Sarah-cuda was right; you can see parts of Russia from some places in Alaska). And, in addition to the continual, nation-wide carnage going on around me, I very nearly contracted terminal crotch rot in Vietnam’s heat and humidity.

All in service to God and Country.

Why, then, am I constantly harried by people I have never seen and do not know who demand I prove my fealty to that same God and Country over and over? It seems I must forward endless messages declaring my steadfast love of God (the Christian one, of course) and devotion to my country or I’ll be considered an atheist, a commie, a hippie, a deviant, or worse. Is there something worse? Perhaps one of them durned guv’mint revernooers, maybe.

Why am I expected to prove anything to anybody? Aren’t these United States of America supposed to collectively be the world’s shining exemplar of freedom, particularly personal freedom? Doesn’t that freedom include not having to ostentatiously wave the same Flag I spent so many years serving – and still serve in my mind and heart of hearts? Doesn’t past faithful service count for anything?

I joined these discussion groups in search of information and like-minded individuals with whom I could be comfortable, people who had seen and experienced many of the same things I have and made some of the same sacrifices – and mistakes. Had I wanted to be nagged daily at various hours until I gave up the ghost, I’d have gotten married years ago.

If you people just have to test somebody on God and the Pledge of Allegiance to the United States of America, go harass some lizard-lipped, double-dealing denizen of Wall Street, or plague a thieving, Ponzi-scheming ‘investment advisor’ like Bernie Madoff. Demand they prove their loyalty to God and Country, and maybe give back some of the trillions they’ve stolen from their fellow Americans over the years.

Those rapacious, conscienceless bastards have done grievous harm to America and its citizens. They don’t seem to be suffering a whole hell of a lot as a result of their cupidity and greed, even though we know who many of them are and what they’ve done. They’re the ones who need to be reminded of duty to God and Country, not us. I suppose it’s too much to hope the vast majority of them will ever be properly punished for the damage they’ve done to America and the world.

So, stop preaching to the choir and kindly leave us honest, God-fearing, tried-and-true old patriots the hell alone. We’ve already proven ourselves without any external urging, and we’ve been doing it for years, now. We don’t need to be tested, cajoled, threatened, or reminded of our duties or obligations. We’ve never had any problem reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and meaning what we were saying.

The mealy-mouthed people who blithely parrot the words, pontificate about patriotism, and then slither off to loot the country are the ones you need to worry about. You know, the super patriotic political hacks and their ovine adherents who never put on a uniform but who love to foment wars in which neither they nor their kin participate. Send them your checklists on God and Country; I don’t need one. I wore the uniform. I went to war, and I went voluntarily; I rather thought of it as a priority.

“I had other priorities in the '60s than military service.” -- Dick Cheney, former Vice President, United States of America