The Official Voice of Vietnam Veterans of America, Inc. ®
An organization chartered by the U.S. Congress

March/April 2004

Get Out And Vote


VVAís fiscal year ended in February. Where has all the time gone? It seems like only yesterday that we were in St. Louis at the National Convention, and here we are getting ready for the Leadership conference in Nashville in August.

The past six months have been busy, but are nothing compared to the next nine months ahead of us. You notice I said "us." That means you and me. Itís such a simple thing to do, doesnít require vigorous energy, involves a limited amount of your time, is your right. You earned it. You fought for it. You owe it to those who died for it and for those who will follow us.

Check out the cover of the last issue of The VVA Veteran, the picture of the flag stuck in The Wall and the phrase, "We canít vote, you can." Keep that picture in your mind as you exercise your right to vote. You owe it to them.

I guess you are like meyou have been listening to the candidates. Remember that you have to ask questions, hard questions, about the issues pertaining to veterans. Ask direct questions and donít forget to be polite.

For too many years veterans have been getting angry and upset with the wrong people. Itís not the VA that controls the funding for our health care, itís the lawmakers you and I elected. They are the ones we need to remind of their obligation to veteranspast, present, and future. So, donít forget to vote and get everyone you know who is eligible to vote, too.

Speaking of elections: Chapters and state councils will soon be holding elections of their own. Chapters in April, state councils in June. So hereís your opportunity again to exercise your right to vote. As a member of your chapter and a delegate representing your chapter, you will be electing the officers who will represent you. Remember to ask questions of the candidates and to get their views and opinions.

I remember something my wife told me a long time ago when I was having a terrible time. "If you want to change things, you canít do it from the outside, you have to do it from within. So get involved and change things." She was right. If you want to change things, get involved.

I would like to congratulate Thomas Stevens of Chapter 443 in Georgia as Region 4 Member of the Year. It was a tough decision as there were some great nominations submitted.

Remember to take care of each other. Donít forget the brotherhood we have with each other. Weíre a breed of our own. Donít forget to vote.


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