Here is a story of one man's path to citizenship that I can admire. He's paid not only his dues, but many others as well. Welcome, citizen Walt Gaya, I'm proud to have you here!
Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
What do you do when Milbloggers come to town? When they bring their firearms (sorry Lex), you must go visit the range, of course!
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Last night was a special evening, as BCR and I sped off into Seattle to meet up with our favorite Naval Aviator, Neptunus Lex. We connected with Lex at the appointed time, and whisked him off to the local chowder house, where we nourished body and soul with food, drink and great conversation.
Monday, May 22, 2006
I started reading this post at Smash's place, about a weasel claiming to be an anti-war soldier. An Army Ranger, no less! (Hey, if you're going to impersonate a soldier, do it in style.) The first link in the post takes you off to the web site of a group that I recognize. I ran into some of the folks from SocialistAlternative-dot-Org 1 year and 1 day ago, outside of an Army recruiting office on Jackson St. in Seattle.
Thursday, May 18, 2006
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Check out the new Milblogs DB site - thanks to Greyhawk and Mrs. Greyhawk. Our favorite milbloggers posting more great stories to augment (NOT replace) the high-quality posts on their own blogs. The Armorer, Smash, Blackfive, Sgt. Hook and many more - think of it as the Castle's H&I Fires on steriods ... or some kind of hormone, anyways!
Monday, May 15, 2006
Generally I don't understand the flap over school prayer. If you didn't pray silently in school (for good grades, for the teacher to please not call on you, whatever), then that's between you and whatever deity or providence you hold highest. Personally, I prayed all the time, I just didn't do it out loud.
Committee will propose guidelines for issue of prayerHat tip to Andy MacDonald at Sound Politics.
For the record, I agree with Andy's viewpoint - the schools should have nothing to do with prayer, neither denying students the opportunity to take their own time to use for this purpose, nor setting aside time for it. Whether or not to pray is a highly personal decision, the school is there to teach, to offer information and an environment which encourages learning and mental growth. Period.
I wonder if there is anything postive that is possible to come from this discussion? I don't see a possibility of it. What are your thoughts?
Local KOMO (ABC affiliate) commentator Ken Schramm is on this one. He says that Dr. Hollins lied to him.
Friday, May 12, 2006
Congrats to Deborah Scranton's The War Tapes, which won the international documentary feature competition at the Tribeca Film Festival this week! This simply demonstrates how valuable it is to get boots-on-the-ground stories from our troops to counter the doom and gloom of the major news outlets. Bravo, Deborah!
Sunday, May 07, 2006
I read Capt B's review of United 93 this morning, and some thoughts that have been swirling in my head came to the forefront and demanded equal time.
No surprises in the movie. Yes, it ends like you're fearing and know it's going to. BUT, it does give a very good detailed description of what they have pieced together of the occurrences that transpired that day. As events unfold and footage from the attacks on the World Trade Center are shown, I began to get that nervous chest tightening feeling again as I experienced in theater before going out on convoys. I knew what was coming up in the movie and although not sure of the details I knew the tragic outcome.
Not that I have any idea what it's like to rev up to go 'outside the wire' in a war zone, but that tension in the chest was there.
I left the theater with that pissed off I wanna go stomp some more Monkey Ass feeling in my gut!. Angry as the movie reminds people in the theater WHY we are still in Iraq and Afghanistan. Angry because in the jumbo theater I was in, Flt 93 was only in one theater of 12 in the building. Angry because the theater I was in was only half full. Meanwhile little girlie man "Tommy Cruise" is running around with his wireless mike trying to complete MI III. There should be a line outside of people wanting to see the movie Flt 93. Not ready for it? Scared? Not wanting to face the ending all over again because you know the result?? Bullshit. Get you ass out there and see it.
That's it, folks. The bottom line is that you must see this movie, to prove to hollyweird that we value true stories about real heroes far more than high-paid actors playing at being heroes.
Waiting until the movie hits DVD will not help deliver the message Right Now.
The Huntress recently gave a run-down of the kinds of stories that the film industry is working on.
Not one story about the daily inspiring heroic accomplishments of our troops...just stories about one man's failure, one man's dissent, one man's controversial assertions about Pres Bush and the military, the underside of the situation in Iraq with the kidnapping of a journalist; the challenges soldiers face when returning from war and trying to find the "new normal", and the pain that families face when their loved ones pay the ultimate price.
Every time we go to a theater and buy a ticket for a little entertainment, we are voting for more of the same. We send messages straight to the movie makers and elitists in the film industry to make that kind of film again. We all know how filmmakers like to repeat success - and that they care about two things : money and recognition. We can't give the right movies Oscars, but we can vote with our feet and wallets.
The message we need to send about United 93 is that we aren't satisfied with watching fake heroes - we have real ones, and we want to see more of them. So enter your vote by buying a ticket, even if - like Varifrank - you can't bear to walk into the theater and watch the movie.
If you can convince someone to go with you, all the better. And if you know people who are not so firm in their resolve that we are at war, and must win it - buy them a ticket and take them with you. It'll be good for both of you.
Some other sites with reviews and links:
Friday, May 05, 2006
Orson Scott Card writes some of the best science fiction to be found, but he is very in touch with the current events of the world as well, as he proves in his World Watch column of April 16. He gives his viewpoint on the retired generals v. Sec. Rumsfeld, on the view of the military in television, and how it all affects the perception of U.S. citizens and others around the world.
I wish I had a hope of writing as well as this:
Go here to read the whole piece.
Monday, May 01, 2006
How do You show your appreciation the members of our military, and for their families? Maybe you connect through Soldiers' Angels, AnySoldier.Com or BooksForSoldiers, or greet returning troops in your area, or volunteer at your local USO, or help the families of serving military to deal with the long absence of their loved ones.
Maybe you haven't taken any of these steps because you weren't sure how to do so, or didn't realize how much good you can do, and how easy it is. Showing support doesn't have to cost a lot of money, as literally every Soldier, Marine, Airman or Sailor will tell you that all they really want when deployed is to hear from someone back home. Letters and cards are greatly appreciated. And, in case you haven't discovered this yet, I'll tell you a secret - you get as much out of it as they do! Sometimes, you even get a Blogson ...*grin*.
Our lawmakers in Washington have decided to designate the month of May as National Military Appreciation Month:
This really should happen all year around, but a month is a good start! Check out the website for National Military Appreciation Month 2006 , complete with suggestions on ways to show your support:
Here are some other suggestions, many of which regular visitors will recognize from my sidebar. (I'll be adding the new ones as soon as I update my template)
All of these good causes can use financial help, some let you connect with serving military folks, and if you can only afford the cost of envelopes, paper and stamps - send a letter ... make a connection. Let's show our military community how much we appreciate and support them!