Veteran’s Treatment

By: Calvin Lovick

There are many segments of the United States population that have legitimate reasons to gripe
about the way they’re treated: African-Americans, women and disabled individuals, for example.
But veterans are another group that certainly has been mistreated in this country – woefully so,
as a matter of fact.
Consider this: You spend time in the military knowing there’s a risk you could lose your life or
get badly injured while being deployed overseas. Yet when you return to the states, you have
trouble finding a decent job, obtaining a home loan or even getting proper medical care.
I’m a former member of the United States Air Force, having served during Viet Nam. I know
how hard it was to be away from my family and friends, fighting for my country. When I
returned to the U.S., I was fortunate enough to find employment. Sadly, not everyone who served
was so fortunate.
Years ago when I owned a recruitment firm, I made it a point to host a recruitment job fair
exclusively for veterans each year in November. You could tell by the looks on the faces of the
veterans in attendance that they were grateful someone was trying to help them land gainful
According to statistics from Trading Economics, the U.S. unemployment rate in November was
4.1 percent. According to information on their website, Trading Economics “provides its users
with accurate information for 196 countries including historical data for more than 20 million
economic indicators, exchange rates, stock market indexes, government bond yields and
commodity prices.”
According to information from the United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor
Statistics, the unemployment rate for November 2017 was 4.1 percent. Also according to
information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2016, the unemployment rate of veterans
varied across the U.S., ranging from a low of 1.8 percent in Indiana to a high of 7.6 percent in
Washington, D.C.

I maintain that any veteran who wants a job should be able to find one in the United States of
America. Likewise, I truly believe veterans should be able to obtain good-paying jobs.
It breaks my heart when I see a man or woman standing on a street corner holding a sign
proclaiming status as a homeless veteran. In the richest country in the world, with a President
who claims to care so much about veterans, we absolutely must do better by our veterans.
I know heads rolled within Veterans Administration after it was revealed that some veterans
were dying, literally, while waiting to be seen by doctors. But firing a few bigwigs here and there
isn’t a panacea. Nor does that do anything to solve the problem of veterans who can’t find decent
jobs, or of veterans who aren’t getting proper medical attention.
It’s time for us to step up to the plate in this country and to do right by our veterans.
Enough is enough. The freedoms we enjoy in this country come at a high price to others – at a
high price to our veterans. So the next time you’re at Starbucks and you see a man or woman
with a VFW cap on, purchase a cup of coffee for him or her. The next time you pass a veteran
while you’re walking down the street, take a minute to stop and thank him or her for the service
that’s been rendered to this country.
And, especially important, if you really want to help our veterans write your congressman or
congresswoman and implore them to help them, too.

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