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Old 02-22-2015, 01:28 AM
 
Location: San Francisco
2,267 posts, read 1,375,392 times
Reputation: 3731

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dechatelet View Post
And saying nothing could easily come across as cold indifference.

And spitting in someone's face (Vietnam) could be taken as hostility and ingratitude.

All of this reminds me of the old psychiatrist's joke:

If the patient is late, he's hostile.

If he's early, he's anxious.

If he's on time, he's compulsive.

You just can't win with some people.
The problem with 'thank for your service' it could sound a bit patronizing, how often in contemporary civilian society do we bandy about terms relating to duty? If a guy just told me he'd returned from combat, an option say, in a bar, might be to offer to stand the guy a drink. Silence might be taken for indifference, but the 'commendation' on service sounds trite.
Again, if someone's fine with that - fine - but I can see how it could be grating.
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Old 02-22-2015, 02:11 AM
 
11,987 posts, read 10,689,330 times
Reputation: 9899
Quote:
Originally Posted by ks5692 View Post
The guy's a jerk. Anyone who gets pissed off by someone's thoughtful comment is a jerk.
This guy is a jerk, agreed. He should just keep his mouth shut. That said, I'm a vet, and I don't like to be thanked for my service either. It usually feels smarmy. I smile graciously when thanked, however. I don't complain to the media.
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Old 02-22-2015, 02:12 AM
 
11,987 posts, read 10,689,330 times
Reputation: 9899
Quote:
Originally Posted by modernist1 View Post
The problem with 'thank for your service' it could sound a bit patronizing, how often in contemporary civilian society do we bandy about terms relating to duty? If a guy just told me he'd returned from combat, an option say, in a bar, might be to offer to stand the guy a drink. Silence might be taken for indifference, but the 'commendation' on service sounds trite.
Again, if someone's fine with that - fine - but I can see how it could be grating.
Exactly. A lot of times the person given the thanks does it in a perfunctory way -- like they are obligated to say it or else they're not patriots or good people.
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Old 02-22-2015, 05:08 AM
 
43 posts, read 43,770 times
Reputation: 23
Default I will always thank veterans

I admit. I am one of those annoying people who thank veterans, especially Vietnam vets. My husband spent 30 years between The Marine Corps and the Navy (EOD). He was in conflicts from Vietnam to the Desert. When he talks about the way our Marines and Soldiers were treated when returning from Vietnam, I want to puke. All these free love hippies taking their political gripes out on these guys, many of whom were DRAFTED, is beyond disgusting. These no-loads were home smoking pot,listening to The Stones, experiencing free love, while our servicemen were getting their asses blown off in the thick Asian jungles of Nam. And then to come home and be spit on by the ingrates who were home dancing and doping is unforgivable. So when I see a Vietnam veteran wearing a hat announcing his service, I go up to him, and I won't apologize for it. I'd rather take the risk of offending him if there is a chance that he would appreciate it. I also don't just say, "Thank you for your service." It's too cliche. I usually tell him that the way they were treated when they came home is just not right. And it usually prompts a conversation or at least some recognition. So for me, I'll take my chances and keep approaching the older veterans in chance that a kind word might be comforting, even if it's in the smallest way.

P/S I'm actively involved with helping local veterans who need assistance with academic writing.

Last edited by popduff1; 02-22-2015 at 06:36 AM..
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Old 02-22-2015, 05:52 AM
 
19,237 posts, read 11,152,570 times
Reputation: 8386
maybe what you say " thank you" should be put into action-!!
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Old 02-22-2015, 06:25 AM
 
Location: South Seattle Suburbs
3,348 posts, read 5,815,315 times
Reputation: 3523
Quote:
Originally Posted by WestCobb View Post
Exactly. A lot of times the person given the thanks does it in a perfunctory way -- like they are obligated to say it or else they're not patriots or good people.
Yeah, that's the problem I have with it. We've gotten to the point of de facto worship of the military, so that if you happen to be critical of our foreign policy and that our current military actions might hurt more than they help, you're met with outright hatred and vitriol.

But yeah, I'm sure "thank you for your service" does feel empty and trite to these guys, much like "I'm sorry for your loss" sounds vacuous to anyone who's lost a loved one. It makes the person saying it feel better while doing nothing for the recipient. We're good at patting ourselves on the back in this country without doing much to back up our words.

Regardless of my own feelings on our military actions and foreign policy, I think I'd also feel insulted having all these people thank me for my service when we have a system that chews these guys up and spits them out when they come back home. If you're really thankful for their service, then fight for better veterans services. Advocate for veterans who are battling mental illness and sitting out on the street. Work for more intervention for PTSD problems in hopes of reducing veteran suicide rates. See that they have more opportunities for jobs when they come home and have an easier time integrating back into society.

Or, perhaps best of all, push our elected leaders to re-examine our insane foreign policy that keeps sending these guys overseas in the first place. Push back against the recruiters who prey on poor kids who see no other options when they finish school but to join the military. Educate the public on why these guys are making themselves unwitting pawns of the military-industrial complex and falling for nationalist propaganda that serves the wealthy and powerful. Teach them that there is no glory in war.

All of those things would be better than simply spouting off "thank you for your service" and acting like we've done something constructive.
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Old 02-22-2015, 06:59 AM
 
Location: Arizona
1,766 posts, read 1,276,197 times
Reputation: 1232
^ Perfect

I was going to comment but Adrian71 said it all
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Old 02-22-2015, 07:12 AM
 
28,906 posts, read 45,235,124 times
Reputation: 45820
Quote:
Originally Posted by trishguard View Post
I agree with him. It's empty. If you are really thankful and feel the service is meaningful, offer your own and suit up.
I'm 52. Don't think that's going to work. Saying thanks is at least an appreciation of what they're doing.
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Old 02-22-2015, 07:13 AM
 
Location: Miami, FL
8,088 posts, read 7,323,159 times
Reputation: 6650
Quote:
Originally Posted by purplepeach View Post
Just read an article on MSN about a vet that is offended when people tell him "thanks for your service."
Claims it is empty, thoughtless because anyone who wasn't there doesn't understand, etc.

I say- don't be offended by people who didn't share in that experience. He VOLUNTEERED; it was his choice.

It even says within military groups some militants make fun of the phrase with each other.

Cripes! What the h***do they want us to say to them?? Nothing??

Think of the Vietnam vets- I'm sure they would have loved to hear people thank them for their service.
I always thought it was pure hypocrisy to say thank you. They are all volunteers. I recall when one typically enlisted because they had few choices after HS. It was just something someone did. Nothing special in it. I think if you were a late teen then USMC dress blues were cool looking and girls loved guys in them but that was the extent of the public caring about the military. Today it is a slavish attitude which beggars belief.

Last edited by Felix C; 02-22-2015 at 07:39 AM..
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Old 02-22-2015, 07:22 AM
 
5,479 posts, read 2,256,800 times
Reputation: 5169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrian71 View Post
Yeah, that's the problem I have with it. We've gotten to the point of de facto worship of the military, so that if you happen to be critical of our foreign policy and that our current military actions might hurt more than they help, you're met with outright hatred and vitriol.

But yeah, I'm sure "thank you for your service" does feel empty and trite to these guys, much like "I'm sorry for your loss" sounds vacuous to anyone who's lost a loved one. It makes the person saying it feel better while doing nothing for the recipient. We're good at patting ourselves on the back in this country without doing much to back up our words.

Regardless of my own feelings on our military actions and foreign policy, I think I'd also feel insulted having all these people thank me for my service when we have a system that chews these guys up and spits them out when they come back home. If you're really thankful for their service, then fight for better veterans services. Advocate for veterans who are battling mental illness and sitting out on the street. Work for more intervention for PTSD problems in hopes of reducing veteran suicide rates. See that they have more opportunities for jobs when they come home and have an easier time integrating back into society.

Or, perhaps best of all, push our elected leaders to re-examine our insane foreign policy that keeps sending these guys overseas in the first place. Push back against the recruiters who prey on poor kids who see no other options when they finish school but to join the military. Educate the public on why these guys are making themselves unwitting pawns of the military-industrial complex and falling for nationalist propaganda that serves the wealthy and powerful. Teach them that there is no glory in war.

All of those things would be better than simply spouting off "thank you for your service" and acting like we've done something constructive.
Wow, well said! I totally agree. I can see why he feels the way he does. I kind of cringe when I hear that obligatory, "Thank you for your service."

Your post sums it up beautifully. I can't state it any better.
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