There’s a new group that is forming, calling itself Million Vet March on the Memorials. It’s yet another well-meaning, but misguided attempt to help during this completely unnecessary government shutdown caused by hostage taking in the House of Representatives. It was born out of the orchestrated storming of the barricades at the World War II Memorial last week, where Republicans voted to shut down the government, then raced down to the memorial to cynically pose for a photo op with unfortunate Honor Flight Vets who had come to DC and were locked out of the monument. During that photo-op, Congressman Randy Neugebauer, Teabagger from Texas, acted like a jackass, verbally accosting an unpaid National Park Ranger for simply doing her job. This new group plans on marching on memorials all over the country next Sunday to somehow “liberate” them somehow from the government. I’m not exactly sure what the goal is, since the group doesn’t really articulate it.
The false narrative being pushed by the Republicans, right wing media, and this vet group, is that memorials have never ever been closed, even during the government shutdown in 1995. That assertion, of course, is patently false, but that doesn’t stop them from organizing to protest the memorials and monuments being closed due to the government shutdown. Obviously conservative leaning, this group is insisting that a government shutdown doesn’t mean that the government is actually shut down, but only the parts of the government they don’t like. It only takes a minute perusing their posts to find the normal racist, bigoted insults, and GOP talking points repeated word for word.
It seems to us that if they do indeed mobilize one million vets, this group would be much more effective if they got them to flood Republican Congressmen’s offices with calls to stop the hostage taking and re-open the government. If they were threatened with not getting re-elected, you can bet they would reverse course immediately. The votes are there if only Boehner would allow an up or down vote.
The vets are well meaning, but being lemmings for the Republicans. It’s much more effective to lean on elected officials to get them to do their job, but they’ll go to DC for a meaningless (and likely anemic) show of solidarity that will do nothing to actually breaking the stalemate.