From my buddy Del:
A group called BeforeTheyGo.com has put out a really slick video that you
can see on You-Tube, which is a tribute to Vietnam vets. Here's the
While it is certainly well intended, the makers fell right into accepting
the totally bogus set of statistics published originally by "The American
War Library", a scam operation set up by one phony vet in southern
California. The claim is that over 2/3 of us have died already, and
we'll all be dead in 5 more years, that we've had an horrendous level of
suicide, divorces, and getting thrown into jail. None of which is true,
about 3/4 of us are still alive, we had an elevated suicide rate shortly
after the war that then leveled off, we aren't any different than any
other group in terms of divorces or going to jail, in fact some studies
show we are on average less likely to have jail time. A lot of this
false information has been floating around for many years, pushing that
image of the average Vietvet as the shaggy old loser with the joint in
his mouth (or maybe the needle in his arm).
Many of us carry baggage from the war, some a lot more than others, but
so did the vets from every war we've been in, even though people have
forgotten the difficulties even the WW2 vets experienced. (And that was
the Good War that we helped win decisively.)
But we have overall done our part as good citizens, most of us are proud
of our service, and most of us don't want anybody feeling sorry for us.
And what we can be proud of is that our activism has made sure that our
guys, our younger brothers so to speak, coming home nowadays from their
service are getting the respect and appreciation they deserve.
So enjoy the video, but don't swallow one tiny bit of the bad stats they
got fooled into using.