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Thank you for your Marine sons service
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Editor, Manteca Bulletin,
I would like to personally thank the Winston family for their son’s courageous service to the U.S. Marine Corp and to our country.
Free speech is one thing, but for a person to purposely hurl venomous insults at a member of our nation’s armed forces and wish them dead (like what was described in Saturday’s Bulletin “Letter to the Editor” column)  at the very least  shows no class nor respect, and at worst is downright harassment.   I applaud Penny Winston for handling it so well, but I know she must have been deeply hurt by these rude and insensitive comments.  One may not like us being over in the Middle East at war, but to vent their anger against one of our brave young Marines is uncalled for.   However,  I just have to believe that for every one idiot out there who likes to brainlessly  “exercise his free speech rights” by insulting the courageous service of our men and women in uniform, there are thousands who will appreciate and thank these selfless individuals who suffer daily in living conditions which we civilians would never choose to endure.   We forget, these courageous people were not drafted to serve; they volunteered to put their nation first and defend us so we can enjoy the freedoms we enjoy in this country.  

While we’re sitting on our fannies in the comfort of our homes watching our TVs, complaining about the government and the economy, and sleeping in our comfy-cozy beds, these men and women – our sons and daughters, parents, relatives and friends – serve in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, living in horrible conditions with threats to their very lives occurring on a daily basis.   They get little sleep, are separated from their loved ones for months on end, and have no vacation.  Some don’t make it home.   Those that do come home, sometimes  are deeply wounded – physically or psychologically.    

When they come home, they deserve the full help and support of their fellow countrymen and women.   At the very least, they deserve our respect, and to be thanked for their service to our nation.  Maybe the bitter person who insulted this fine Marine should try living in a country under Sharia Law and see how much he likes it.   Try insulting a member of the military in one of those countries – they’d be the one dead.    Our nation isn’t perfect.  But it’s still the greatest nation on earth.   So I’ll say it again.  “Thank you Penny, for your son’s service to our country”.  I am glad he did come home safely.    May God Bless him.  

Go Navy!   Semper Fi!     
 Tom Rogers
June 20, 2009