More than a quarter of a million American soldiers died in Vietnam, many more were severely physically and mentally affected, the sense of sacrifice and service they made was extraordinary, and I have great respect for those who are veterans today or are even in the Vietnam War generation because of the challenges and the dedication and courage they demonstrated in order to serve their country. They gave up a lot. They had to answer to parents, they had to answer to, in many cases, to a whole group of non-veterans, who were enraged at what was happening in Vietnam, and this country appropriately lauded them for it.
Although now clearly, when we hear the words of the federal government in the White House or in the Department of Defense or in the State Department or in the Department of Veterans Affairs pledging their support to veterans, we know that the government is saying, we love you, we support you, we thank you.
I think as a country, as Americans, we ought to demonstrate that love by providing the necessary resources to educate veterans, to provide the important and necessary health care to veterans, to provide the great opportunities for veterans to study whatever and whatever they desire to study inside and outside of higher education.
We have neglected them. The love that I know we feel at the White House and the Department of Veterans Affairs in this administration is not the same love that we need to give them. The need and the love is there. The challenge is that, in the interim in the past several years, Congress has asked the Department of Veterans Affairs to do the right thing for people, and they fell short on it.
Because now, there may be a state-by-state situation where veterans may not have necessary access to the facilities and may not have the medical services that they need simply because their state will not immediately provide or fund it, d2c66b5586