Letter: Veterans and their families should be treated with respect


I’m deeply sickened by the defeated former president’s continued scorn towards veterans and military families, especially with the recent attacks on the Haley family. Frankly, there are some anti-Navy trolls I’ve stood up to on Whidbey who would be at home in a MAGA rally based on rhetoric alone.

Now I’m at a point in life with my disabilities and entitlements others fought for where I could just play DCS World with the EA-18G Growler mod in my basement, ride buses to OLF Coupeville, pay my sales taxes and call me a patriot. But this Growler Joe doesn’t care for basement patriotism; I care for showing up and caring.

I’m ashamed I’m not right now on a hot carrier deck even able to help load weapons and jamming pods for some modern-day guardian angel to stop Houthi attacks on worldwide shipping and terroristic attacks on our First Amendment freedoms. Freedom is not free, and I would encourage anyone who feels that way to walk the Oak Harbor waterfront and see the memorial to EA-6B Prowler aircrew to question that belief.

Every time I visit that memorial to make a scenic transfer between the Island Transit Routes 411W and 1 on the way to OLF Coupeville, I renew my commitment to ensure no EA-18G or P-3A memorial is necessary with my advocacy for OLF Coupeville. I have my mom and dad, and so should everybody else. In my America, you give and respect service, knowing you are lucky to live here and someone special loves you and your America enough to stand between you and harm.

So what happened to… ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country? We cannot be great unless every American asks the same question once in a while.

Joe A. Kunzler

Skagit County