I was young and people expected me to swear allegiance to the flag. To fight for my country and die with valor to protect the dream. I was taught to fire a weapon and kill people I’d never met without knowing their hopes and aspirations. To wipe their blood from my hands with aplomb and trample their essence. Behind my mask I was the juggernaut carrying out orders without understanding the crimes of the enemy. There but to serve.
Should I die, my parents would grieve and mourn my loss without feeling the agony of families I shattered with my bullets and boots. The rubble I left behind didn’t matter. Only victory was important.
Losing my limbs in a foreign land turned me into a hero. A wounded warrior. Sadly, I was but a pawn in an ongoing game. In the end I was left to beg for treatment and sustenance.
The lie continues as new enemies are created and young people enlist to thwart threats to an agenda serving those above the fray. Following orders from generals unconcerned with their safety. Patriots to a country without allegiance to its servants. Killing and dying for greed and aggrandizement.
Hopefully, my prosthetics will arrive soon and I won’t be charged for them. One never knows when benefits will be denied. Hopefully, I can walk again without suffering so much pain. Hopefully, my son and daughter will find careers that don’t destroy the lives of others.