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America's War fought by the Poor

Updated on November 24, 2011

These are the times

which try men's souls...

or so the saying goes...

It's "Common Sense" if you will.

Rich man's War, Poor man's blood

It is an American tradition, if one has the where with all to escape the personal battle of war, then so shall it be. The fact of having skin in the game, say through the draft during Vietnam, spurred Civil unrest, social protest and ultimately the voice of the masses could not be ignored.

It's a reasonable assertion, we all are afforded options. It's also reasonable to contest we do not all have the same options.It's like betting on Papa's Mustache in the 4th at Belmont. Fore you see, Papa is not able to control the growth of his facial hair despite the degree to which his children have faith toward the end result. Such is the case for those whom war is not a viable option. Conversely, such is not the case for those whom financial stability is not ingrained genetically. Of course this metaphor is a sign of the times.

"These are the times that try men's souls: The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman."

As it goes throughout the course of history, we are often best served to look in the rear view to see where we are heading.

Granted this little piece of work by the 18th Century 'Enlightenment' Philosopher Thomas Paine depict a course of freedom going is as relevant today as it was back then.

"Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph."

Living in these times without power and control the tyrannical concerns, force us to look within. That harsh look in the mirror is often quite revealing. As parents, we assume the last line of defence to the continuance of family tradition and the values.

It is as it was and as always shall be;the privilege of financial wealth is as old as Old Money. The current state of affairs regarding class warfare is a discussion for another time.

Take heart in this revival; the revival of American Revolution America. Fore in the words of Thomas Paine lives this notion. ..."So unlimited a power can only belong to God."

Therefore we turn to cliche's a plenty... Stay the course...Steady as she goes...full speed ahead. When the wall blocks your desires to be all you can be, when you can't go over it or under it, one's determination dictates one to go through it. It often involves a great deal of pain, but considering the alternative, the options are limited. Indeed, we started at that very premise in the first place.

Therefore folks, get up a head of steam, if you will, and hit that wall full speed on the run. In the event you bounce off, get up and do it again. Sooner or later expect a silhouette of your body where that barricade once was. Eventually you'll find a crack in that impenetrable wall.

"For though the flame of liberty may sometimes cease to shine, the embers can never expire."



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    • Tusitala profile image


      6 years ago

      Mr. Falcone;

      Yeh. At that time (early 70's) I got to know several of the officers that rode motors - Gardena P.D. or L.A.P.D. Most were returned Veterans that had opted, due to the economic slowdown, post Viet Nam to sign up and take their chances facing a bullet. Many were genuinely interested in simply "doing good". That was a tough time to strike a balance and keep their composure with so many social aspects arising simultaneously to the end of the war.

      That was also a pivotal period to the advent and increase in drugs.

      At times, I've wondered what happened to some of them. In essence I suppose, "we" made the "mistake" of opting for the wrong side of the war and continued post-war, only to find ourselves muzzled or shouted down over time.

      With the advent of all volunteer service I think perhaps it has turned into a huge mistake. Can't help but think if we did as the Israelis and had mandatory service for ALL, we would be better off. Of course the Pentagon wouldn't see it that way. Now, the greatest portion of our coming generations are oblivious to the what and why of service.

      Perhaps we reacted to the extreme and now treat service as an alternative career path instead of a duty and obligation. So, you could look at the decision as weakening rather than strengtheining our National "Sociology"?

      Service was the great leveler; but it was also exposure for young men to begin to learn the "world", themselves and begin forming their personal decisions of what kind of person they were going to be.

      Carrying that thinking forward, we have institutionalized the sons and daughters of the rich being exempted from participation for their convenience?

    • gjfalcone profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Gilbert, Arizona

      Well said Tusitala,

      Thank you as always for adding substance to the topic. Be well my friend.

    • Tusitala profile image


      6 years ago

      Well, by accident? You've posted what was at the core of my latest effort, "Discount". Being "Viet Nam Era" was a learning experience and the basic truth is exactly as you have stated. Such is the way and history of the world.

      With this enforced blackout of all war news that was generated due to what took place during Viet Nam, we now have returning Veterans with a buttoned up mind that will take years to unravel. They are more detached and more likely to stay in service out of simple "kinship" to their fellow compatriots; which serves the rich to an even better degree. We have succeeded in allowing a created class of warriors, just like the "good ol' days" of the Roman Empire.

      I have great empathy and some understanding of and for these Veterans of this new age of class distinction that they find themselves in. Makes a person wonder, where we go from here?

      Does this mean that the perpetual motion machine of "warrior class" is now in place forever more?

      I know you'll get something out of this further observation: "The New Centurions"; because law enforcement is just another extention of the same concept.

    • gjfalcone profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Gilbert, Arizona

      Thanks for your comments WTS.

      Interesting quote you have cited, and I would tend to agree,to a certain degree, can arguably be validated. It sounds like a civil war reference describing Rhett Butler from 'Gone with the Wind'...

      The media and Industrial Military Complex are one hell of a drug. Like any addiction the prospects are not very promising to a coherent future. Pleasure Sir, I look forward to our next conversation.

    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 

      6 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      There are definitely some things going on in this old world!

      What's the old saying, "patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." - Yeah, I think that works, and it's sick to see US Citizens still supporting the wars in Arabia.

      It's a testament to the power of the mass media that folks are so deluded and unaware of the truth of the matter...that the one percent get wealthier and profit on both sides of those wars while the poor die like cannon fodder.


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