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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Respect and Patriotism..." 'Larry Arruda' (Special to dakinetalk)

Please welcome guest-blogger Mr. Larry Arruda.
Larry was born and raised in Lihu'e Kauai.Graduated from Wilcox Elementary in 1959
and Kauai High School in 1963. Larry is a Vietnam war veteran. Larry served 30 years in Costa Mesa California  as a highway design administrator. Larry Retired in 2002 and moved back home to Kauai in 2003.

Respect and Patriotism

I have struggled with my emotions and thoughts on the subject of professional athletes, and now others, demonstrating disrespect to the flag of our nation.
I'll begin this by saying that I whole-heartedly believe in the freedoms set down for us in our constitution and the reasons provided by our "declaration of independence ".  

I am a Vietnam war veteran who was 18 years old at the time and I did what I was told to do. Right or wrong?,  I don't know anymore, but I was told that I was defending the freedoms of a people that needed help. I was told that it was necessary to "put a stop to communist aggression".

While I believe that the original intentions of the Vietnam war may have been honorable, I now know that there were other ulterior motives by our government for escalating that war.  
With age, comes wisdom and with that wisdom comes knowledge. I now struggle with having confidence in the operations and motives of our government.  

We could not, and did not fly the American flag over our compound in Vietnam.  We were told that its was not permitted at the time because it was not a "declared war" and we were there in that country as "advisors" to the South Vietnamese military. (Some of us had small American flags
 posted inside our hootches.)

  An entire year with no reveille, no retreat, no pledge of allegiance.   And except for the American flag flying over the U.S. Embassy, unless you were lucky enough to get into Saigon, you never saw OLD GLORY against the blue sky. 

On the day that I got out of that country and landed at Honolulu airport, I walked out of that airplane, stepped down onto the tarmac,  looked up and saw our Stars & Stripes flying high over the airport terminal with the blue sky the background, I bent down and put my right hand on the ground and thanked the good Lord for getting me home in one piece.   A sight engraved in my mind, and a feeling engorged in my heart forever. 
Because of this, and my persistence of patriotism, I've come to this conclusion:
While our nations flag stands for the rights to do just what these protesters are doing, it also stands to represent the people of our nation. And it waves over those that have given their lives to defend those freedoms.

It DOES NOT represent the "government" that has so blatantly moved to cause those freedoms to perish. The government to which the protest is aimed.   A dishonorable gesture to the most patriotic symbol of our nation, possibly the ONLY patriotic symbol left, is disgraceful, and should not be tolerated.  Our democratic system provides for many other avenues to demonstrate your displeasure with the performance of our government. 

The Constitution of the United States of America also provides you with the right to vote. But it is  very important to be aware of, and educated on the issues involved in your selection.  

Please remember to vote!  

Hana Hou, (Encore)


Anonymous said...

Decent thinking, Larry

Phyllis McSwain said...

Proud to be your sister,

KimoRosen said...

Glenn and Roger, I was finally able to erase the meme since it contained some false information. No longer there.

Charles Huss said...

I wish everyone read this. Sadly only a few know what happened.
So many way to deal with it. You were blessed enough to come home. Thank you.

KimoRosen said...

Charles, didn't you also serve our country in Nam?

Charles Huss said...

I am but was never in Nam. But Cambodia. About a month. Looking for trails in and out

KimoRosen said...

Close enough buddy, thanks for your service along with Larry's!

Renee Harden said...

Beautifully put! God Bless you, & everyone, please pray for God's Will be done in our elections!🙏🏼🙏🏽🇺🇸🌴🌺

Charles Huss shared and said said...

For those who are confused and defacing our Flag!

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Glenn Mickens-by email said...

As far as my good friend Larry is concerned, I too honor and salute our flag and what it stands for. I served my 2 years in the Korean conflict and always stood and respected that symbol of the freedom we have in this nation.

Those who say that some people have the right to protest their beliefs by not honoring our flag have a valid point---I may not agree with their stance but isn't that what our nation is about---freedom for all even if it is not what most of us agree on?

If we stop this kind of protest then where do we stop--the Ku Klux Klan is one of the worst organizations in America as is the Nazi party but we allow them to be here under our style of government. When we banish them we banish a piece of our constitutional rights. We are a nation of laws and anyone breaking the law should be punished. But if the dissident groups abide by the law they are safe guarded by our laws and have the right to protest the same as we would.

Like Trump saying that women who have an abortion should be punished whereas under Roe vs Wade she has that right and the law is the law. The right to have an abortion should be between the woman, her doctor and her husband or, in the case of rape, her judgement only.For me the government should have no roll or decision making in these cases.

Keep up the fine work, Kimo.

KimoRosen said...


I agree, however the football players need to do this protesting on their own time,. not own their employers time.

Would the Dodgers had allowed you to kneel during the anthem? Somebody working at 7-11 McDonald's or the Hyatt can protest all they want on any issue on their own time but if they do it while working their employers have the right to fire them.

Glenn Mickens-by email said...

Yes, Kimo, but they do it when the National Anthem is played and I do not think there is a law that mandates their standing or sitting is required for it. They are not violating the managers orders for playing the game so I think they have that right. Even when Lou Alcinder (Kareme Abdual Jabar) was playing for UCLA he would not stand for the Anthem so he stayed in the dressing room till it was over. Or Bill Walton laid down in the streets of Westwood protesting the Vietnam war--I did not approve of it but he did it.
NO, I do not approve of it any more than I do not approve of beards, mustaches and tatoos on players today (My pal George Sparky Anderson would not allow hair on his ball players of the Big Red Machine during the "hair "look but his players respected his orders and were a winning dynasty for several years.

In my 15 years of pro baseball I strongly protested the reserve clause as it was definitely unconstitutional but I never broke any law protesting it and no club tried to release me. This issue is completely different and just as those sprinters did in the long ago olympics (raised their black gloves) they were wrong by all standards but did not break the law and were never put in jail.

Interesting subject, Kimo but as long as no laws are broken I cannot see anyone getting fired from their jobs UNLESS their protest involves what they are being paid to do.

KimoRosen said...

It's a distraction to the team, look at San Francisco. All anyone wants to talk about is their second string quarterback Colin Kaepernick who was once one of the greats. Many feel he's doing it for the attention since he lost the starting QB position. The team needs to concentrate on football and how can you concentrate on football when all anybody wants top know about is the protests of the poor multi million dollar oppressed football player?

This guy makes 19 million a year, not so oppressed?

BTW, he is adoptive child raised by white parents in a decent white home.

Glenn Mickens-by email said...

Yes, Kimo he is making a bundle of money and that is why I do not think he is doing this for his own purpose--why stir waves when he is at the top? All the notoriety in the world will not get him back his starting QB job---his skill and decision by his coach is all that will get him there,

The only distraction will be to him and his getting the starting QB job. The rest of the team will do everything in their power to win and secure their own positions no matter who the QB is.

I played for some managers I didn't respect or approve of but I kept my self in the best shape I could and did my best to win every game I was in--whatever they or my teammates did never deterred me from giving baseball all I had. Even though I didn't have the greatest of talent I did fight my way to the Bigs for a short time when there were only 8 teams in both leagues. For 15 years of summer and winter baseball and 25 more years coaching at UCLA I made my living and will always be proud of that.

Again, I do not approve of anyone having disrespect for our flag but I was lucky enough to be born white and cannot imagine the fight and turmoil African Americans have gone through to have some kind of equality with the rest of us.
I was honored to play with Jackie Robinson and saw the abuse he and my other teammates, Campanella, Gillium, Newcomb and Black had to go through to break the color line.

It will be interesting to see how this whole issue plays out---right now my Dodgers have their backs against the wall and need two more wins to get to the World Series.


KimoRosen said...

He was adopted by white parents, lived in Suburbia. had an all expense college scholarship, made millions out of college. what other country could this kid be throwing a football around making this kind of money.


You want oppressed? Look at my ancestors, the Jewish people. You don't see us disrespecting old glory.

Glenn Mickens-by email said...

Under our constitution he has the right to do what he is doing as many others are doing today. I believe he is trying to make a point for his people and not for himself and right or wrong that is what he is trying to do. I may not think it to be appropriate but as long as we live under our constitution it will have to be accepted. All kinds of sports stars around the word are making more than he does and whatever their beliefs are may not be my or your beliefs but that is up to them and their country to decide.

What the Germans did to your race, Kimo, can never be or should never be forgotten. And, if at that time ANYONE was making the case for condoning any part of that genocide and say you wanted to protest it like the blacks are now doing ( and again I may not agree that you are protesting in the right way) you have the right under our constitution to legally do it. Morally for others it may be wrong but if no law is broken it is your choice.

I know that we are not going to agree on this, Kimo so just let's agree to disagree. You are my pal and let's stay with the issues that are affecting Kauai, not R issues or D issues but issues that have no political basis except to better our island.

Anonymous said...

Hi Glenn, thanks for your service in Korea and for those of us that live in Kauai by way of your watchdogging for us.

I don't think we are really debating about if he can do it Glenn. This about my right to think he is a spoiled baby. And here is the BOTTOM LINE Glenn-------I used to be a 49ers fan, now I despise them. And no amount of justifying his LEGAL right to do it is going to make me a niners fan again for a very long time.

I hope the owner of the team chews on that for awhile.