The Fallout of the Walter Reed Debacle

Posted: March 14, 2007 by April Watkins in Current Events, Issues, Our Government, Politics
Tags: , ,

We should all be ashamed for the dilapidated state of some areas in our country’s premier Army hospital.  It’s OUR fault…yours and mine.   

We have failed our responsibilities to our service men and women, both active and retired.  As a people, we have abdicated the tasks of citizenry to the politicians and allowed budget cuts to be made with little to no public outcry.  If decisions and budget cuts made in Washington, D.C. don’t affect OUR wallets or OUR family, we basically pay no heed.  We are more concerned with our day-to-day lives…you know, our kids ballgames, our social events, the “important things” in our lives.   

The truth is that the things that we consider important will be irrelevant if we degrade our military to the point of being ineffective, and, thus, leaving us unprotected, undefended.   Well, folks, as the saying goes…people get the government they deserve.  If we continue to ignore our role as participants in our democratic republic, we will see more outrageous consequences.  Of course, we will simply blame it on the politicians and go on with our merry lives until reality bursts our bubble.   

Knock, knock…reality has come to call.  It is time that we, as individuals, sit up and pay attention to what is happening in our government.  We cannot allow legislation to continue that cuts truly vital programs like our military and its subsidiary programs; i.e.  Military hospitals and new technologies, VA institutions, etc.  Unfortunately, many of our politicians, both Democrat and Republican, determine the “imperative” status of budget elements by how it affects their political standing and re-election prospects, rather than the truly critical needs of our citizens.   

To be fair, we should note that this hospital has been scheduled for closure under the Department of Defense’s 2005 BRAC (Base Realignment And Closure) program.  The current facility has been determined too old to be updated and refitted with modern technology.  The DOD’s plan is to integrate the facility onto the sprawling campus of the U.S. National Naval Medical Center located just down the road.  Unfortunately, red tape and timing have impeded a seamless merger to the detriment of our soldiers.   

Let us hope that the public exposure of the condition of sections of the Walter Reed Army Medical Center will spur action.  Let us also hope that this revelation will compel the government hierarchy to take a critical look at other military medical facilities to bring them up to a modern and technologically advanced standard.   

Our military personnel and their families deserve the best possible care available in America. And America should be willing to provide it.  These are our soldiers, our sons and our daughters…and that is Why It Matters.   

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