Tuesday, November 13, 2018

We Remember - The Vietnam Veterans Memorial

 Veteran's Day isn’t to be a memory,  but a day to commemorate those who sacrificed their lives and livelihood. We may not set aside the memories and respect we expressed only days ago. The gestures may remain silent for another year, but they remain in our hearts.

As we step ahead in time, we look at this day November 13, 2018, as we remember another milestone in history. We look upon this day as a day when veterans of one era finally receive the respect they deserve. They receive the respect that for more than a decade was silenced, by a narrow-minded view, that certain men and women didn’t deserve respect because they fought an unpopular war.

It is on this day in 1982 that the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was dedicated. The “Wall” as people commonly refer to it has become an icon. The black granite “v” shaped wall is a symbol of love and loss, war and peace, and the unending cycle of war. The Memorial is inscribed with 57,939 names of those who never came home from Vietnam. 

The “Wall” has become a gateway to forgiveness. It is a place where the protesters and defenders meet and remember a time of turmoil that separated a people who before the war were friends. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is a place that offered the initial healing. It is one of the most visited memorials in the nation's capital.

I will take a moment today to remember not only the sacrifice our military endured in Vietnam but the humiliation people subjected them to when they returned home. I salute each of you today; those who look upon the names on the Memorial, and those whose names are inscribed within the black granite. Thank you for your service and your sacrifice. My heart goes out to you who suffered in silence. I wish peace for you in your lives. 

Sunday, November 11, 2018

A Sacred Salute

We offer our veterans a salute of respect and honor today. Let‘s salute all those who sacrificed their existence to secure our freedom, and give thanks to those who endured the pain and hardship of war, so we may feel secure.

Many people blindly walk through life. They go about our day not thinking about the choices they have and the voice they take for granted. We have a voice because of our veterans. Each of us is endowed with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; freedoms secured by our original forefathers. We enjoy these rights at the expense of those who live if not fearlessly; they live sacrificially.

From, the Revolutionary War to the Wars in the Middle East that continue to plague the world. Our Veterans along with our Allies, continue to police the world and offer a choice to those willing to step up and defend the freedoms we often forget about.

Today we offer our thanks to the men and women who keep the peace. I offer my gratitude along with thanks to all our service people. I thank their families too, for their sacrifice.

May your sacrifice be the light that shines in the darkness and spreads love across the globe. 

Photo by Holly Mindrup on Unsplash

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Another Voice Another Vote

The citizens of the United States of America are empowered with rights that could move mountains. Such rights should cause us to race to the polls and vote. Unfortunately, not everyone takes this right seriously.

In recent years we have seen a vast change in how we view politics. This blog is not going to be infused with politics in any form. I can’t mention voting without mentioning the elephant in the room. It is the reason we vote. I believe it is also the reason we are seeing an increased interest in voting and the voting process.

There is a long history of suffrage in this country. One equal to that of the vote. The topic has shaken up the masses at different times in history.

The first vote took place within hours of the landing of the Jamestown voyagers on April 26, 1607, according to their calendar. It was the first attempt at voting on American soil. It was also the beginning of corruption. The commanders of 105 colonialists of Williamsburg unsealed a box containing a list of seven men picked in England who would be the colony’s council. They would select one of the seven as president.

We all remember Captain John Smith. They denied him a seat initially on suspicion of concealing a mutiny. Because they eliminated John Smith from the vote, that left six men, less than six percent of the population to take part in the choice for president. Six men were the voice for the 105 colonists. Ninety-nine voices remained silent, choked out by the king’s rule.

This country has come a long way from colonial Williamsburg. We have suffered many growing pains. In the early years, they allowed only wealthy white men to vote. Male landowners controlled the interest of the population. Eventually, that changed, and it allowed all white males to vote.

In 1870 they granted the African American male population the right to vote through the fifteenth amendment. Many things didn’t change for this demographic, but it was the beginning of change. It would be almost a hundred years before the civil rights movement would cause a greater change.

We went through the woman’s suffrage movement. This movement broke down the barriers that had for centuries snuffed out the voice of women. They finally gave women the right to vote on August 18, 1920, when Congress ratified the nineteenth amendment.

The United States is a melting pot of ethnicity. “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” (Statue of Liberty). This country welcomes the masses, through its gates (by means of citizenship), in welcoming them we give them the right to be a voice for themselves as well as for the country.

I hope each one of you finds the time today to make your voice heard.

Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

Monday, October 29, 2018

"Operation Mind Crime" - Let The Tale Continue

“Ways of War” is the first book in the “Operation Mind Crime” Series. The tale begins as the Vietnam War is escalating. Anna Windsor is a new mother who witnesses the turmoil of change during the era that prompted free love and equal rights. The story touches on these issues, but “Ways of War” is not the beginning and the end. It is what begins the enlightened era of quantum reality and the idea that the mind is malleable.

"A Dangerous Truth” expands on mind control, exposing the damage done to our military used in mind control experiments. In “A Dangerous Truth,” we see healing begin. Men speak out about the atrocities of not only the war but the terror inflicted on many who unwittingly became guinea pigs in a race for knowledge and power.

"Days of Doom” (working title) will be where we see a new generation answer the call of change. It will be the children of Anna Windsor and their peers that open their minds and hearts to the damage by previous generations. They will offer solutions that allow healing and prompt the change we need to see in the world.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Book Signing at Book Warehouse

      2018 has been quite a year, and while the year isn’t over, I'm looking toward the new year with great expectation.

“A Dangerous Truth” is complete and ready for publication. While I wait to publish book number two, I will work on the third book in the series, “Days of Doom.” I am also promoting book number one “Ways of War.”I have a book signing scheduled at Book Warehouse in Tilton, NH on November 23, 2018. If you are in the area and would like to support my work I would love to meet you. There are many great books available at Book Warehouse. I’m sure there is something for everyone.

      I look forward to meeting new people and connecting with many new fans. Remember, I will donate 10% of the profits of all my books sold during the signing to local veterans causes. What better way to kick off the holidays than to share the gift of warmth and shelter with those in need of a hand up. 

     I am excited to step into the new year by completing  "Days of Doom" and having it ready for publication by the spring. 

Monday, September 3, 2018

Suicide in Our Military

Did you know September is National Suicide Prevention Month? There is much focus on suicide in recent months. Any life lost is terrible, and the announcement that David Buckel, Kate Spade, and Jon Paul Steuer took their lives was sad, each announcement brought more attention to the epidemic.

Suicide is a national problem that affects communities and families. It also affects our military in a major way. If we look at the statistics of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, they report 20 veterans who commit suicide each day. Veterans’ suicides make up 18% of suicide deaths.
If you look at a research report in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings journal, you’ll read that Army suicides increased 80% from 2004 to 2008. The Army is not the only branch of military affected by suicide. In a recent US Veterans Magazine article, they quoted Dr. Gerstenhaber to have said, “The suicide rate for our veterans and active duty is around 50% higher than for their civilian counterparts, showing what a serious issue we have on our hands.” They quoted him as also having said, “This group of people have a tremendous amount of stress, and they need to know it’s not a sign of weakness to seek help. We have programs in place that have been successful in helping to reduce the suicide rates, and we want to expand those to help others around the nation.”
Dr. Gerstenhaber works with EOD Warrior Foundation to address the need to reduce the suicide rates. Together they continue to study and work closely with families affected by suicide. They established the EOD Warrior Foundation (through a merger of the EOD Memorial Foundation and the Wounded EOD Warrior Foundation) on March 1, 2013. They work to assist the community of Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) technicians. This organization is just one of many working with our veterans to assist our military to eradicate suicide.
We live in a time not so different from our forefathers. The one advantage we have is an openness and acceptance within our communities. We have developed programs to assist those in need. We have taken the time to devote to studies and statistics. Now we have to band together to offer our veterans a hand up (versus a handout). We need to learn to recognize the early signs of suicide and support those that cry out silently for help.
We may not hear their silent cries, but we can learn to recognize the signs and reach out to those that give so much of themselves to their country. We owe it to them, their families, and our country. 

Photo by israel palacio on Unsplash

Friday, January 5, 2018

Amy Harmon - "The Law of Moses" Review

Last week I finished writing the final chapter of “Usher of Truth.”  It’s off to the editor which allows me a chance to focus on something equally enjoyable. With its completion comes the reward of reading a good book. I love to write, but I also enjoy reading. I have a library full of books I have promised to read. Well, this week I read Amy Harmon’s “The Law of Moses.” I realize the book is not a new release. However, it has taken me this long to set aside the time to focus on it. It was worth it.

We all know Amy Harmon is a New York Times best-selling author and doesn’t need me to validate her work.  I have to share my thoughts on “The Law of Moses.”

“The Law of Moses” was an exceptional story. Amy captures the readers’ attention on the first page when she tells the reader she lost him, and that she wasn’t prepared. Lost who? Prepared for what? So begins the tale that grips your heart and brings tears to your eyes. I believe it is through a mother’s heart that this story comes to life in such a way.

It is difficult to talk about a book; to explain the storyline or create a mental image of what Amy created on the page without spoiling the book. I will say she must pull from her deepest self the feeling of a mother who imagines losing something so precious. The expression and imagery Amy portrayed in “The Law of Moses” brings the heart to a breaking point before showing the reader the capacity of the human heart to rebound and grow stronger.

Amy helps the reader identify with the characters as she brings life to each one while they struggle in their way to find a place in a world more significant than any of us. She brings these characters together in a way that causes the reader to struggle with love and loss, and that many things are beyond our control. Amy sets us on our heels as she weaves together the lives of two young people in love who suffer the consequences of their actions while offering a promise of hope and forgiveness.

I enjoyed reading “The Law of Moses” and look forward to reading more of Amy Harmon’s work in the future.  You can find her upcoming release of “TheSmallest Part” on her website.