Tuesday, August 23, 2005
Into the community
We definitely do more than sit in ditches around here, and tomorrow's main event is proof positive: at 11 a.m. we'll be caravaning from the Crawford Peace House to the VA hospital in Waco to protest its imminent closure. Texas has the nation's third-largest population of veterans, and the hospital in Waco provides what is considered the best post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and blind rehabilitation facilities in the country. Over 250,000 veterans entered the VA health care system this fiscal year; 40% of them are from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a figure that highlights the decreasing average age of vets. Yet Veterans Affairs Secretary Jim Nicholson says it needs to go, along with 17 other VA hospitals around the country. As many Vietnam and Iraq vets here at Camp Casey have asked, "Is this how we treat our veterans?" Think of us tomorrow, and even better, find out about the fate of VA hospitals in your area. After all, when we send our soldiers to war, we'd better make sure we take care of them properly when they return.