Note: This article contains coarse language that may offend some readers.
Let's ignore the fact that the American military has been the greatest force of liberation from the yoke of tyranny that humankind has most likely ever known.
Let's ignore the fact that our military is exceedingly diverse in its makeup.
Let's ignore the fact that a massive charge of our military has nothing to do with war fighting and is focused on humanitarian assistance across the globe.
Setting all of that aside, can we at least agree that it's insulting to Americans who choose to serve our country to ask if that service made them racist? That is precisely what the Huffington Post did this week in the wake of the Charlottesville violence led by Neo-Nazis.
The liberal news website published an article from contributor and self-described “Trump Resister” David Fagin with the headline: “Becoming A Racist: The Unfortunate Side Effect Of Serving Your Country?”
It's important to let the author speak for himself, so below is his line of thinking.
- Reporter says some of the white nationalists in Charlottesville were veterans:
In an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Vice News’ Elle Reeve mentions that security for the neo-Nazis was not provided by the Charlottesville police, as one might expect, but by veterans of the Iraq/Afghan war.
To hear that these veterans claim they were ‘radicalized’ in Iraq and Afghanistan during their tours of duty is one of the more unfortunate things to come to light regarding the side-effects of serving your country.
2. Without citing any hard evidence or data that there is a greater correlation between white supremacy and military members than with civilians, Fagin says:
But to learn that these brave men and women over there return with a new-found hatred for those different from them, especially after their mission is one of liberation from those who kill and persecute anyone of different faiths/beliefs, is quite disturbing to say the least.
3. Fagan calls Iraq and Afghanistan 'sh*tholes':
I can’t even imagine the horror one sees serving their country in a sh*thole the likes of an Iraq or an Afghanistan.
4. Fagan, who is not a veteran, now criticizes the military's handling of soldiers who harbor “disgust toward anyone who isn’t white”:
But to think that even a small portion of them are returning from duty harboring feelings of such intense anger and disgust toward anyone who isn’t white, leads one to believe the military isn’t doing enough in the area of outreach, post-discharge. After all, not every soldier returns with a desire to protect and defend those with beliefs and convictions that stand in direct contrast to everything our military has fought against, and fights against as we speak.
5. Fagan blames Trump for supporting military white supremacy, and then casually wonders if veterans will turn on America someday:
There is only one side to this fence, and to think we’re not only welcoming home members of the armed forces whose opinions and beliefs have been shattered and damaged due to their perilous environment, but who find solace in a President willing to condone those twisted beliefs, rather than make it his mission to do everything he can to help them, makes one worry about where the next Charlottesville will be, and who, exactly, we’ll be fighting.
Makes you wonder: Does Fagan know anyone who served in the military? Are any of his friends veterans? If so, I think they'd be stunned at the headline and inference of this article.
Perhaps before writing such a half-cocked, anecdotal thesis on our service members, Fagan could reach out to some veterans himself to see what their war-fighting experience is.
Perhaps he should also recall that minorities are actually over-represented in the military compared to the U.S. population:
Based on the hundreds of interviews I've done with Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans, I've discovered the exact opposite of his conclusion.
Our veterans are the best this country has to offer, not the worst.