Monday, August 15, 2005

For Your Consideration

As you know, it's Monday. That means many things, the most important of which: It's time for Seven Inches of Service. Woohoo!! It's a good one this week. We wrote open letters to the United States Army or the Commander-in-Chief. Here's where we say all the things that so far are just to a nameless, faceless entity. As an added bonus, there are audio recording for each post. If you want, you can hear each of us read our letter, or you can just read it for yourselves. We are all about choices here. ;-)

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this is an audio post - click to play

Dear Sirs:

You may or may not know who I am, but I know you well; better than I ever imagined. I am writing today with many things on my mind. I have had close ties to you for years. Most of the important people in my life have served you at one time or another. I have personally played the role of military supporter throughout my life, and for the last three years as an army girlfriend.

I’d like to start out by saying thank you. Thanks for the dedication and bravery of the men and women who serve in the ranks of the United States Army. Thank you to the entity who gave my soldier, Clark, a purpose and direction in his life. Thank you for giving him an outlet to channel his energy and his passion; you gave him a mission and taught him perseverance and discipline. The influence the Army has had in his life, I believe, was, for many years, what kept him alive and out of prison.

He has served you and his country faithfully since he was sixteen, that's over six years so far. In those six years, he has been deployed for over two years…a pretty substantial amount of time since Clark is National Guard not regular active duty. He served a full tour in Iraq and a full rotation stateside. During that time, he has performed every task asked of him, he has risen to each challenge and for that you have promoted him to Sergeant. We are both proud of that achievement.

As grateful as I am for the good you have cultivated in Clark’s life; you’ve hurt him a great deal as well. He’s a good soldier and he would never tell you these things; but they are complaints you should hear. You told him to be brave, so he was. You told him to protect his country; he has. You told him to follow orders; he did. You asked for his unending loyalty; you have it.

Apparently this street is one-sided. While he was serving you, he was severely injured, you gave him two days off. He got sick, you told him to take an aspirin and shake it off. He came home from serving you overseas as an emotionally broken and battered man. You told him he was fine.

If that wasn’t enough, you also lied to him about me. You don’t even know me, yet you dragged me into your relationship with my soldier. You told him that I would cheat and lie and desert him. How dare you! I have done nothing but support you, encourage him to be loyal to you, even when it meant that I suffered for it. How do you thank me? You lie about my character, you do everything you can to convince my soldier that I would be nothing more than a distraction. Little did you know that it was I who kept him sane and focused so that he could do your bidding.

Clark has been faithful to you, even to the detriment of himself; if you value that like you say you do, then show him. Take care of him the way he has taken care of you. Fight for him the way he has fought for you. And as long as you demand honesty from him, try giving a little of it back in his direction. Oh, and if it’s not too much trouble, actually look at his file and his impeccable service record when he sits for your board this Christmas. He really does want to make Staff Sergeant, it will make his decision to go career a lot easier, for him at least.

Thank you for your time,