I was embarrassed to read that President Clinton and his advisors have
said, "The older generation must learn to sacrifice as other generations
That's my generation. I knew eventually someone would ferret out the dirty
secret. We've lived the "lifestyle of the rich and famous" all our lives.
Now, I know I must bare the truth about my generation and let the country
condemn us for our selfishness.
During the Depression, we had a hilarious time dancing to the tune of
"Brother Can You Spare A Dime?" We could choose to dine at any of the
country's fabulous soup kitchens, often joined by our parents and siblings.
Those were the heady days of carefree self-indulgence.
Then, with World
War II, the cup filled to overflowing. We had the chance to bask on the
exotic beaches of Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima and Okinawa, to see the capitals
of Europe, and to travel to such scenic spots as Bastogne, Malmedy and
Monte Cassino. Of course, one of the most exhilarating adventures was
the stroll from Bataan to the local Japanese hotels, laughingly known as
But the good times really rolled for those lucky enough to be on the
beaches of Normandy for the swimming and boating that pleasant June day
in 1944. Unforgettable. Even luckier were those who drew the prized
holiday tickets for cruises in sleek, gray ships to fun filled spots
like Midway, the Solomons, the Mariannas, Iwo Jima and Murmansk.
Instead of asking, "What can we do for our country," an indulgent government
let us fritter away our youth wandering idly through the lush and lovely
jungles of Burma and New Guinea.
Yes, it's all true. We were pampered; we were spoiled rotten; we never
did realize what sacrifice meant. We envy you, Mr. Clinton, the harsh
lessons you learned in London, Moscow and Little Rock. My generation is
old, Mr. President, and guilty, but we are repentant. Punish us for our
failings, sir, that we may learn the true meaning of Duty, Honor, and
Robert J. Grady, Lt. Col., USAF (Ret), Colorado Springs, Colorado
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