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War Memorial


I have yet to see anything in the LJW about the proposed Vietnam War Memorial in Wichita that some Vietnamese Americans want to put up. A single bronze statue in honor of those men from both the American and South Vietnamese armed forces. Apparently there is an outcry from veterans locally who say the one Memorial Park is for Americans only. A compromise was reached and it may be put on some city owned land near by but not in the park. The soldiers they wish to honor have no country anymore but the one here. Is this right? These folks are citizens that want to honor this country and their fellow former countrymen that died. Is that so wrong? Sounds rather xenophobic to me. What say you?


Ronda Miller 8 years, 10 months ago

Interesting blog topic, Autie. As usual pye says it all and says it so well and in such an informed manner that I scarcely have anything to add.

I agree that different people because of differing life experiences heal differently. Some people don't heal in this lifetime and others seem to rather quickly. I think base personality traits, religion, values, support, therapy, life experiences, etc. all influence this. I do agree that the last thing we would want to do is to somehow add insult to injury for some of our beloved brothers and sisters, fathers, uncles, mothers, aunts, etc. who may still have not completely healed from their losses, or experiences.

Perhaps something of this order will shed light on thoughts, emotions, actions kept under lock and key for too long - perhaps it will drive them further into the night and their solitude of pain.

I wish them all well, and I hope they manage to live out the rest of their lives with respect for themselves and their fellow humans who were "only following orders".

RoeDapple 8 years, 10 months ago

I thoroughly enjoy eating at the Vietnamese food restaurant downtown.(Lord, did I just admit I DO go downtown at times?) Although I lost friends and classmates to the war in Vietnam, I have no animosity towards the wonderful people who own and operate that business.They came here to escape the fear and violence that claimed my friends and their own friends and relatives.

The Statue of Liberty was a gift from France. Did we tear it down when we could not even say "french fries" a few years ago? No, we look at it as a symbol of everything that makes this country what it is.

Going back a little over 200 years, some of my ancestors were brought from Europe and dumped on the Louisiana and Georgia shores, criminals and beggars in their country of origin, tossed like so much garbage gleaned from the streets.

We are a nation mixed, every nationality, race, religion. Home of many of the wealthiest people on earth, and some of the poorest. As diverse as life in the ocean yet as bigoted and elitist as royalty during a plague. Who am I, or anyone else to say my neighbor, my brother, my fellow countryman is not as deserving for his contribution to the history of any event, shared or not.

My own father fought the Japanese in the Philippines in WWII. One of the few things he ever said about the enemy he fought for 3 years,"It was terrible what we did to each other over there." Even though he had seen soldiers die on both sides in ways we who haven't could not understand, he still acknowledged their humanity, their pride, their need to survive and go back to homes and family. I'm not so sure I could have done the same. If these men and women fought and died alongside the men and women we sent to their country to fight for them, then they deserve to be recognized here for having done so. We are no longer living in the Alabama or Arkansas of the 1950's. Treating these veterans as less than human pushes the clock back, reminding us of where we have been, not where we need to go

Build it. Build it in the Veterans park where it belongs. Someday our ancestors will look back and say,"They did it right."

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