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Victor_c3

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Member since: Wed Aug 15, 2012, 01:17 PM
Number of posts: 2,526

About Me

I grew up hardcore Republican and conservative (although I never agreed with the religious portion of the party) and I even voted for Bush in 2000. (However, by 2004 I realized that was a mistake) I joined the Army in 1997, when I was 17 years old and my parents had to sign a waiver to get me in that young. I later went to college, obtained a degree in chemistry, and received a commission in the US Army where I served as an Infantry Officer from May 2002 until I was discharged in October 2007. While I was in the Army, I would consider myself your typical hardcore junior officer. I spent some time in Ranger School, did the typical stint at Airborne School, and I even had grandiose dreams giving it a shot at Special Forces selection. However, I deployed to Iraq as an Infantry Platoon Leader from Feb 2004 through Mar 2005. Seeing and being involved in combat as intimately as an Infantryman does really shook up a lot of my core beliefs. I could write an essay on this, but in short I now lean hard to the left with much of my political views.

Journal Archives

I would have used these photos...

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Oh wait a second. The last one is a picture of me. 1st Lieutenant Glitter-pants, Infantry Platoon Leader extraordinaire while I was conducting a sweep through a farm field in Iraq in 2004. I was 24, but I sure had a baby face (and I still do 9 years later).

I'm getting off on a tangent here, but looking at pictures of the young guys in Iraq and Afghanistan really makes me think about the Kurt Vonnegut book Slaughterhouse 5 (or The Children's Crusade).

Damn, I love Kurt Vonnegut. It is a shame that I never had a chance to meet and talk to him in real life. If I could meet anyone in history, he would be on the top of my list.

I used to do roofs all the time when I was in college.

I loved it. I used to work for a small time general contractor during my summer breaks for about 4 years. If money wasn't an object, I'd still be doing that job. I loved digging holes, driving around a piece of shit job truck, slugging bundles of shingles up a ladder all day, moving piles of cinder blocks from one side of a jobsite to the other, and doing the bidding of my severely overweight boss.

The shortest time I ever held a job was 1 year and 10 months. It was hell. I was working for Amazon.com as a production manager and it totally destroyed my life. The only reason I hung on so long was because I had a new family and a new house and I needed the money. I just got out of the Army and I figured that I would give the corporate job world a shot. They paid me VERY well, but the job sucked the life out of me and the stress severely aggravated my PTSD issues. I got suspended for 5 or 6 weeks after I freaked out a work really bad. When I returned to the job I lasted a few more months before freaking out again and then I lost my job.

I would walk from the front to the back of my production line at Amazon and suddenly find myself on a dismounted Infantry patrol in Iraq. I could feel the heat of the air, the weight of my body armor, and the rifle in my hands. I'd get all light headed and feel like I was completely disorientated and drunk, start shaking and stuttering, and crying uncontrollably. It was awful and I completely scared the shit out of the people where I worked.

Now I work as a chemist for the federal government and I love it. I kind of bumble around the lab all day confused and in a half-daze. As long as I get the priority work in our lab done right away, I can take my time doing everything else and work at my own pace. I'm still a freak and I'm still completely crazy, but with this job I can hide out a little bit better when I need to get away from everything and my coworkers are very understanding when I start rambling on about something that happened to me almost 10 years ago.

The waste in war sickens me too

I read something a while back stating that 5% of all people on our planet who died between 1900-1999 died as a result of war.

I love your comment at the end of your post

It is just like the reasoning for tallying and publishing the number of civilian casualties in Iraq.

This should be front and center on the homepage of DU. It is a shame an article like this is buried in the veterans section. You post a lot of great articles and it is sad that most of them hardly get any visibility.

Thanks for your time and effort
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