When it comes to repealing Don't Ask Don't Tell, my personal opinion is that this is a good thing. People who do us the honor of serving in this country's military deserve to serve as who they are. But I'm not in the military, have never been in the military, and don't plan on serving in the military in the future, so my opinion has always been based on my personal belief of "respect an equality for all" rather than any kind of practical knowledge. And yet... all the people I've talked to who are in the military seem to feel the same way. So, yay, it's time to move on.
And yet the opinion of those serving in the military TODAY has been shoved aside by opportunist politicians catering to their homophobic voter base...
Original Senator John McCain photo by Wigwam Jones via Flickr
Which is disheartening because the attitudes of crotchety old men like John McCain isn't keeping up with the progressive attitudes of modern society...
Fortunately, this country is moving forward despite those who would hold us back.
Unfortunately this is not always the case. This country seems to have a history of shitting all over those who would serve to protect us... and, just when you think things are changing, something comes along to prove you wrong. Like the politician assholes who are currently working to filibuster the Ground Zero First Responder Health Bill. Or assholes like (surprise!) Senator John McCain who thinks the lives of our heroes is some kind of game.
I am trying... desperately trying... to understand the mindset that would cause somebody to deny much-needed monies for health care to those who risked their lives to save others when this country was attacked. The most common complaint was something like: "Well, that's what they're paid to do! They signed up for a dangerous job and are now crying for more money TO DO THEIR JOB? We shouldn't have to pay for that! I wish somebody would give ME a bonus for doing MY job!"
Give me a fucking break.
YOU TAKE CARE OF THOSE WHO TAKE CARE OF YOU!
There's nothing more to be said. Because if you don't take care of those whose job is to selflessly save lives, GUESS WHAT? Nobody is going to save lives! These heroes accept that they could die doing their job. They know that what they do is dangerous, yet choose do it any way. The least we can do is make sure their sacrifice doesn't ruin the rest of their lives if they should be fortunate enough to survive their service.
And now that first responders continue to suffer horrendous long-term respiratory problems and other health issues from being exposed to the wreckage of Ground Zero, they need to be taken care of when their insurance and worker's comp runs out. Again, it's the least... the very least... we can do for those who boldly go where angels fear to tread. So a bill was drafted, money was found by closing a tax loophole on foreign companies with U.S. subsidiaries, and all we needed to do was pass it. Sure it's expensive, but you do what you gotta do when it comes time to take a stand for what is right. You find a way and you do the right thing.
Except a bunch of asshole politicians think the lives of our heroes really is a game and decided that filibustering for political gain was more important than doing what is right. Despite an impassioned plea for them to do just that...
And so heroic first-responders are left hanging for no other reason except they're apparently not politically important enough to be worth saving. At least until it's politically advantageous to do so. Or some unfathomable tragedy befalls us and it comes time for them to have to run in and save our ungrateful asses.
Typical. So mind-bogglingly typical. Just politics as usual in Washington DC.
If only there was a way to mark all these politicians as "not worth saving" when tragedy pays a visit to their house...
Alexander (R-TN), Barrasso (R-WY), Bennett (R-UT), Bond (R-MO), Brown (R-MA), Bunning (R-KY), Burr (R-NC), Chambliss (R-GA), Coburn (R-OK), Cochran (R-MS), Collins (R-ME), Corker (R-TN), Cornyn (R-TX), Crapo (R-ID), DeMint (R-SC), Ensign (R-NV), Enzi (R-WY), Graham (R-SC), Grassley (R-IA), Gregg (R-NH), Hatch (R-UT), Hutchison (R-TX), Inhofe (R-OK), Isakson (R-GA), Johanns (R-NE), Kirk (R-IL), Kyl (R-AZ), LeMieux (R-FL), Lugar (R-IN), McCain (R-AZ), McConnell (R-KY), Murkowski (R-AK), Reid (D-NV), Risch (R-ID), Roberts (R-KS), Sessions (R-AL), Shelby (R-AL), Snowe (R-ME), Thune (R-SD), Vitter (R-LA), Voinovich (R-OH), Wicker (R-MS).
What repugnant pieces of shit.
Without regard to their own safety, there were people who worked tirelessly to search for survivors and help where needed when America was in its darkest hour. Now it's their turn. Their darkest hour has arrived. These people are facing health crises and financial ruin as a direct result of their service. It's time to return the favor and help them now that they need us. It's time to do what's right.