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Veteran urges support of act
Dear Hartselle Enquirer:
I ask for your support of the Honor our Fallen Prisoners of War Act, introduced in the House by Representative Filner as HR 2369 and a companion bill to be introduced in the Senate by Senator Boxer Dec. 12.
I, like the majority of veterans and the public, wrongly believe that those unfortunate members of our Armed Forces who are captured and who die while a Prisoner of War are awarded the Purple Heart Medal. Not so. These brave souls who suffered long and died a horrible death were not awarded the Purple Heart. Remember that those in their late teens and early 20s who are otherwise healthy normally do not normally die of natural causes. Their deaths were premeditated if by nothing other than intentional neglect. There were many causes but the main causes of death were prolonged exposure, beriberi, freezing, diarrhea, pneumonia and starvation.
Since Dec. 7, 1941, approximately 17,000 service members have died while in the custody of the enemy and their deaths have never been appropriately recognized.
HR 2369, Honor Our Fallen Prisoners Of War Act, and it's to-be-introduced companion bill in the Senate, would change current regulations governing the award of the Purple Heart Medal to include all who die while in the custody of the enemy as a prisoner of war.
The next of kin of these people recognize the Purple Heart Medal as final closure. No other medal says it like a Purple Heart. Most of the next of kin of those who died as prisoners of war have been told very little about their loved ones. They are searching for closure now. Where mothers and fathers, now passed, have searched for closure, their siblings and children now seek that closure.
Because the implementation of the Fallen Prisoners of War Act does not require significant funding, I suggest that it be included in the 2006 National Defense Authorization Act, which is now pending resolution in Joint Committee.
I again urge your support … it is the right thing to do.
Gene Aittala, USN Retired
Illegal immigrants cause problems
American citizens be warned: we are victims of an epidemic and it's not bird flu. It's an invasion of illegal immigrants draining – not contributing – to our society.
They're driving around with no license or liability. They're receiving better medical care than a lot of our tax paying citizens. They're paying not one cent towards Medicaid, Social Security, unemployment, state or federal taxes. Now, also they get a great rate on a new home loan with, of course, a fake picture ID that can be purchased for $50.
How can the state and local government keep up with the child molesters and terrorists flocking across our borders when they don't even show concern toward them taking over our cities job by job.
I'm sick of the illegal supporters saying they are only taking jobs (others) think they are too good to do. The truth is they are too good to work for half the wages they used to earn before their throats were cut by industries that are successfully getting out of paying insurance, taxes and yes, the other half of that wage.
These citizens have families, mortgages, insurance, car payments and lives that have gone to financial ruin. These companies need (to be) fined.
It's bad enough Bill Clinton sold us out to NAFTA and now George Bush has sold us out to CAFTA and our precious borders. When is enough enough?
Citizens, call your mayor, president, congressmen, representative, police chiefs, retail businesses, industrial managers, all companies large and small, and let them know it's against federal law to hire these invaders. In reality, they are harboring fugitives.
If I were living tax free, drawing food stamps, WIC, living on Medicaid, living in a house, sharing my bills with the other families living with me, I would see the American dream that they see from across the border. Sounds good, huh?
I can't have that dream. I pay around a third of my money on taxes to support their American dream. Make them line up for military duty. They don't realize how much blood has been spilled over decades so they can be free. These (people) are disrespecting our veterans and the forefathers of this country.
One voice matters. Your voice matters. Look at what Rosa Parks did. She was one voice. Your job could be next. Think about it and act on it. Make the calls. You matter. If you're a citizen, be proud of it and live like it. Fight to secure our borders.
June Lawrimore