As a former paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division throughout WWII I would like to submit the following letter.
The chief of staff of the army has decreed that every person in the Army will wear a black beret as of June 2001. This means that the official headgear for all persons in the Army will be a black beret.
By tradition, the Black Beret has become the headgear of the Rangers, our foremost combat unit in the Army. The Green Beret is the official headgear of the Special Forces by a decree from President John F. Kennedy in 1961. The decree from the chief of staff will not affect them.
The balances of the Airborne Forces in the Army wear a Maroon Beret. The chief of staff says that these may continue to remain the same.
A beret in the United States Army is the symbol of excellence and the mark of an elite soldier. A soldier with a beret on his head is Airborne and highly motivated and stands ready at a moment's notice to give his life for his country. The reward for his vigilance and his patriotism is the privilege of wearing a beret, either black, green or maroon, depending upon which unit to which he has earned the right to be assigned.
For the chief of staff of the Army to decree that every person in the Army will henceforth wear a black beret is to downgrade the Rangers, our bravest of soldiers, and to demean all of the Airborne, whose most significant attribute is the wearing of a distinctive beret. The beret to the Airborne is more than just a distinctive headgear; it is a badge of courage. When every person in the Army wears one, it will mean little more than a head covering.
A disservice is being perpetrated on our elite combat soldiers and their accomplishments are being ignored.
Ralph W. Yeager
A message to Bush
I am sure, that the thought has been run by you, either written or verbally, that necessity is the mother of invention. Then also, in any business college course work, you have been exposed to, the fact that a market is the mother of industry.
And, of course you learned that money is a media of exchange, and as such, the denominations hold a symbol of value. That value will hold as long as there is a strong economy behind it. If all you have to sell is labor, mental or physical, and you are put out of work in declining economy, then you are no longer part of the market, and the symbols are meaningless.
If you should have a good supply of those symbols as workers are being laid off, you'd be foolish to invest in inventory for which there is no market. So it is that investing in the financial market, becomes a skies the limit gamble, until the players realize their symbols have turned to match sticks.
Now is a time for finding a way to use labor to benefit society, and not to offer more match sticks to burned out gamblers.
Any rational liberal can help you.
Dennis G. Gordon
A life line
Every parent's worst nightmare. Answering the door to a police officer telling you your son or daughter has been found hurt or dead. Monday, this message was delivered to one of our local families. Tuesday, my daughter heard the news at school. She called me at work, not to come to get her but rather, just to hear my voice. My voice. She needed to know, no matter where I was or what I was doing, that she could rely on my time. She can. She did.
Today, I mourn for the loss of that family. I also mourn for the loss of "time" which busy schedules tend to take away from our families each day. I mourn for the lost voice. The one who can't be reached when it desperately needs to be heard. I mourn for our children.
No one can change yesterday. No one can predict tomorrow's outcome. Today, at this moment, is all we have to be sure of. Where is your voice? Can your son or daughter rely on it at any time? It is more than a voice. It is a life line.
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