In the fall edition of The Veteran, previously called Veterans Against the Vietnam War, there were two veteran’s viewpoints that might cause non-mask wearers to rethink their decisions.

The viewpoint of a veteran, who served in the 25th Infantry Division during the Vietnam War and received three purple hearts and a bronze star with a combat V for valor under fire, wrote this after he met an unmasked man in the grocery store who was carrying an AR-15.

He asked the unmasked man why he did not wear a mask and the man’s reply was because he was a patriot.

The veteran wrote: “Freedom. Patriot. I need to redefine what that means. This is the freedom to infect and harm other people, to drink and dance and party and live as if one million dead people in the pandemic is a hoax, to be stupid, selfish, self-centered. But that’s not freedom, that’s the definition of insanity.”

Another veteran, a Marine, wrote: “The single most important ‘weapon’ a combat Marine has is the Marine standing next to him. You fight for your survival and that of your buddy. If either you or he can’t or isn’t able to do what you’ve been trained to do, then you both are in mortal danger. Looking out for your buddy was looking out for yourself, so in this time of deadly threat, look out for your ‘buddy’ -- your family, your friend, your neighbor. Be safe, be smart, be a hopeful warrior.”

Newsletter signup for email alerts

These two veterans are the true patriots, as are all health care workers who are there for all of us. Think of them and mask up.