Protect Those Who Protect Us…

I think we tend to be numb to things we haven’t experienced ourselves or don’t know someone who has experienced.  Until yesterday, I truly didn’t realize just how messed up our country is.  We expect people to fight for us and protect us but, as they age… we tend to forget about them.  

I have a very dear friend who is a 87 year old Korean war veteran.  Recently his 90 year old wife passed away and he is alone so my girls and I have been spending a lot more time with him.  Before his wife passed, he worked for a company and was her caretaker.  He didn’t receive his most recent paycheck so he went to the company and asked why it hadn’t been direct deposited and they informed him that it couldn’t be and wrote him a check.  He then took this check and deposited into his bank account.  Later, he went to get cash from his account and was informed it was frozen.  He called to ask why his account was frozen and was informed because his paycheck had bounced so his account is over drafted.  He then told me: “I have $120 in that account and I can’t access”. 

Honestly, at that point, I didn’t think a whole lot about this at that point.  I felt bad for him that he only had $120 but, I didn’t really think about exactly what that meant… until… I got a chain letter in my Facebook inbox with these numbers:


Salary of retired US Presidents .. . . . . $180,000 FOR LIFE.

Salary of House/Senate members .. . . $174,000 FOR LIFE

Salary of Speaker of the House .. . . . . $223,500 FOR LIFE.

Salary of Majority / Minority Leaders . . $193,400 FOR LIFE.

Average Salary of a teacher . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. .$40,065

Average Salary of a deployed Soldier . . .. . . .. $38,000

I researched these numbers and while they are not quite accurate, the idea of the message is correct.  The leaders of our country serve a term or sometimes a few terms making laws and attending fancy dinners in fancy suits that cost enough to pay most of our house payments or more… and we pay them for their service… for life.  A comfortable salary that actually pays for them to live life.

I’m not even going to get into teachers but… the people who go to war and offer their LIVES for our protection… to protect OUR LIVES…. we barely offer them enough money to get by.  They literally took a chance on never coming back to our country, never seeing their family, losing their life in a violent war… yet… we don’t repay them with enough to live.

There are homeless Veterans all over this country… yet we pay those who served in Washington D.C. a more than ample salary… It makes no sense to me.  

Why? Why? Why does an 87 year old Korean war veteran have to live paycheck to paycheck?  You can tell me he didn’t prepare and so on and so forth… but, he did his time… just like the leaders of our country did… he and all of our servicemen should receive a living wage if those who serve in government do.

Granted, the money has to come from somewhere… I truly believe there is a lot of corruption in this country and most of our leaders are motivated by money.  That being said, I believe money is being spent elsewhere where it could be going to those who truly need it.  Think about it… the money spent to host a single dinner would cover the entire living expenses of many Veterans… 

I think our country is numb to the fact that our servicemen are living in poverty.  For me, I have heard it many times but, it never truly hit home until I saw the effects on someone I know and love.  It is heart breaking to think about it. 




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