Dishonoring a Hero: The Racist Right Strikes Again

I received the following  email today. I initially erased it but then I retrieved it because it shows how the racist right uses false analogies and the service of our men and women in uniform to push their ignorance and hate. And I kid you not, this piece of guano is going viral. Read the email and then my take on it.


Captain Freedman Receiving Medal of Honor in 2001 at the White House.

You’re a 19 year old kid. You are critically wounded and dying in the jungle somewhere in the Central Highlands of Viet Nam. It’s November 11, 1967. LZ (landing zone) X-ray.

Your unit is outnumbered 8-1 and the enemy fire is so intense from 100 yards away, that your CO (commanding officer) has ordered the MedEvac helicopters to stop coming in.

 You’re lying there, listening to the enemy machine guns and you know you’re not getting out.  Your family is half way around the world, 12,000 miles away, and you’ll never see them again. As the world starts to fade in and out, you know this is the day.

 Then – over the machine gun noise – you faintly hear that sound of a helicopter. You look up to see a Huey coming in. But.. It doesn’t seem real because no MedEvac markings are on it.  Captain Ed Freeman is coming in for you.

 He’s not MedEvac so it’s not his job, but he heard the radio call and decided he’s flying his Huey down into the machine gun fire anyway. Even after the MedEvacs were ordered not to come. He’s coming anyway. And he drops it in and sits there in the machine gun fire, as they load 3 of you at a time on board. Then he flies you up and out through the gunfire to the doctors and nurses and safety.

 And, he kept coming back!! 13 more times!!  Until all the wounded were out. No one knew until the mission was over that the Captain had been hit 4 times in the legs and left arm. He took 29 of you and your buddies out that day. Some would not have made it without the Captain and his Huey.

 Medal of Honor Recipient, Captain Ed Freeman, United States Air Force, died last Wednesday at the age of 70, in Boise, Idaho. May God Bless and Rest His Soul.

 I bet you didn’t hear about this hero’s passing, but we’ve sure seen a whole bunch about the thug Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, the gov. shut down, “what difference does it make!!!” and the bickering of congress over Health & OBAMA CARE!  BUT ZIP ABOUT THE PASSING OF Medal of Honor Winner Captain Ed Freeman

Shame on the media !!! Now… YOU pass this along. Honor this real hero. Please

This post has many things wrong, including the date of the event which is actually 14 November 1965. So I will talk about something else.

There is one reason you did not hear about Captain Ed. Freeman’s passing; he died in the peace and comfort of his own house at a very advanced age. He was not killed by a vigilante (a real thug) while on his way home and armed with a soda and a bag of skittles. Neither was he killed for the crime of being Black and too big.  

The racist right soils the memory of a man who heroically risked his life in 1965 to save dozens of his fellow soldiers- Blacks, Puerto Ricans, Asian-Americans, Mexica-Americans and Whites. His deeds were well covered by the press back then, half a century ago, and he received the highest decoration this country awards in 2001.

The racist right wants you to believe that Ed Freedman was cheated out of something. They would like you to believe that white males are under assault and that they represent the real America. The right uses Freedman’s memory to push a racist political agenda. And they are the same that support more wars, sending more troops into harm’s way, but will oppose any measure that may ease those very same soldiers’ reentry into civilian life.

Wearing a flag pin doesn’t make you a patriot, working to better this country and avoiding wars do. Caring for those we send into harm’s way? Yes, that will make you a patriot.

I suspect that since Freedman spent his time in Vietnam risking his own life to save American lives he would be repulsed by the association of his name with the killing of unarmed Americans in our own soil.

Luckily he did not have to see such travesty.

Rest in peace Captain Ed Freeman.

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