I've written my first bit over at Big Peace on this subject- and going into further detail over why I think we should 'quit' the VFW over staying in to fight it. Suffice it to say- the organization is too bloated, too entrenched, and would take far too long to do it that way at this point. Removing their funding sources (dues/membership fees) goes a LOT farther, a lot FASTER than just waiting UNTIL A FRIGGIN' CONVENTION NEXT YEAR. This is what politicians do when they are resovled to maintain a position- toss that turd around until it no longer stinks.
Well VFW, this stinks now, its going to continue to rot, and we'd like a solution NOW.
Commander, resign. PAC leadership, step down. Waiting for a convention next year doesn't cut it.
Oh, and BTW, none of us have heard from you trying to explain yourselves (my email is in the sidebar- other authors do the same). Silence is golden, eh?
Above the line UPDATE 3:
First off, thank you to all who have written and commented on this topic. A nerve has been struck here, and it's important we understand exactly what is going on, and what has transpired in the last 24 hours. Keep up the pressure- it's working and getting noticed!
I've corresponded with several people on this, and yesterday, I received in my in-box a copy of a letter from the Florida Commander of the VFW to the National PAC Commander stating:
On behalf of the Department of Florida, I am writing to object to the manner in which the Veterans of Foreign Wars Political Action Committee made its endorsements for the United States Congress.
Yes. The Dept. of Florida is at odds with what has transpired at National. Think it's just the PAC they are concerned with? Think again- look at this closing line:
It is evident fromthe tone of the received emails that the VFW-PAC and by association
the Veterans of Foreign Wars is not sewing the interests of some members and potential members. This regional firestorm could have been avoided if the PAC board and staff remembered the old adage that all politics are local.
I disagree with one element of this- it ain't regional. It's all over the US, from the emails and comments we've received here and at Ace o' Spades and This Ain't Hell and others. People.Are.Pissed. And like I stated below, the Allen West snub was the last straw. What's worse, he's not the only excellent candidate out there who happens to be a Vet. He's only one of the more visable and well-known guys. Here is the document in full: Download Dept of FL Response to PAC Endorsement (2). It is evident that the process is broken, that they won't listen, and most cerainly, they are after only one thing- money, and not the support for the vets and communities they purport to serve. To endorse some of the most VILE, anti-military politicians over stalwart veterans with REAL experience and community support is the worst. ADDED: 2 other reasons this isn't just a VFW-PAC problem- remember the DHS memo issue? Where they listed 'veterans' as possible security risks? And Obama's admin wanting to shave 540m off the budget by charging veterans for their health care? Where was the National on that? I'll remind you- supporting the administration, and not backing the local vet's who were extremely upset then, too.
I'm going to be hitting up many more venues and outlets on this- stay tuned, and watch over at Big Peace, Ace, and Hugh Hewitt for more to come. I'll post more links as they come up. Keep the pressure on- we need to let them know that, in this electoral cycle, with the 'temperature' of the electorate being what it is, the status quo won't work. I'm calling it the VFW's version of the TEA Party, in a way. It is apparent that they have gone so far off-track at the national level, just like our elected officials, that they've lost touch with who really matters- local guys.
One other thing- I'm serious about burning my card if this doesn't get 'fixed'. And by 'fixed' I mean the endorsements pulled, and those at the top GONE. Both at the National level and the PAC. Taking it back won't work- it takes too long, and they will not change. Resignations and removals need to happen NOW. If anyone at the National level is reading, my contact info is in the sidebar.
This will not stand....
UPDATE 2 AT BOTTOM
Last night, we received an interesting email from Bev Perlson, who heads the Band of Mothers group. She's got an awesome email list that is good for keeping up on what's going on around the country.
You read that right.
His opponent? Democrat Ron Klein. WHO HAS NEVER SERVED IN UNIFORM.
You read THAT right, too.
People, I've been pissed before. Mad, even. Upset. But this? THIS is treasonous to me. For a 'so called' veterans organization to pick a NON-SERVING, NON-VETERAN over one of the MOST PROMISING veterans running in politics is heinous. Disturbing. And shows just how far off-track the VFW has become.
As you may recall, when I returned from Iraq one of the first things I did was join VFW and Legion as 'life members'. Now, it seems, the time has come to rip, burn, and toss my Lifetime Membership for the VFW. I feel like they have completely left us at the station here. Over at the Farm Team, Jonn Lilyea lays out just who the VFW has announced they are supporting:
Barbara Boxer, Alcee Hastings, Barbara Lee, Steny Hoyer, Barbara Mikulsky, Chris VanHollen, John Dingell, Chuckie Schumer, Pat Leahy and Patty Murray
In addition, they support Perlmutter over Bailey (former USAF) Frazier (former Navy) for Colorado; to their credit, they do support Mike Coffman (Marine) in his race in CO. But the rest of the list is disgusting. To me, it reads they are 'supporting' or 'endorsing' only those they see as WINNING. It appears they don't give a RATS ASS who supports vets or who WAS a vet.
I am asking all of you to join me in contacting the VFW to protest this development; supporting a non-vet over LTC West was the last straw.
Call the VFW at 1-202-544-5868. Email them at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oh yeah, and before I forget- Remember when Obama wanted to charge wounded troops for medical care? VFW supported him on that, too. READ IT HERE.
VFW- we are done here. Fix it, or be gone as a veterans organization.
UPDATE 1: Keep hitting them- word is they are getting calls. Write. HIT THEM HARD. Given the climate that's out there, and what they are doing to veterans behind our backs, this should not stand. I suggest the following in any statements you send/make:
I, my membership, my money (the money I set aside to give to PACs) and every friend I can bring along are switching to the Legion. And I will be doing my damnedest to convince every veteran I know to do likewise.
I hate this- I know there are locals that do great things. But, if they are willing to sit by, and let their national organization do this over their objections, then they are complicit in it. I'd like to see the locals boot the national guys out. Really would.
UPDATE 2: Getting questions and emails on whether we realize there is a difference between VFW and VFW-PAC. Well, there is and there isn't. Let me just say this- if the local VFW chapters, to include the states, are willing to let National allow their PAC to push this type of agenda and these types of candidates, well, bad on them for just standing by. They should be rioting over it. Holding their dues payments where they can. Put pressure on National to adhere to what the LOCALS want, not what National may think 'is best'. Because to do otherwise is utter bullshiite.
To us, this is not an issue of VFW-PAC vs. VFW. They are the same- don't let anyone tell you otherwise.