Skip to comments.Spitting by Left-wing activists and Lembcke's new book
Posted on 09/01/2006 11:04:31 AM PDT by Dr_Cruel
"...Although Nexis overflows with references to protesters gobbing on Vietnam vets, and Bob Greene's 1989 book Homecoming: When the Soldiers Returned From Vietnam counts 63 examples of protester spitting, Jerry Lembcke argues that the story is bunk in his 1998 book The Spitting Image: Myth, Memory, and the Legacy of Vietnam" ... Lembcke, a professor of sociology at Holy Cross and a Vietnam vet, investigated hundreds of news accounts of antiwar activists spitting on vets. But every time he pushed for more evidence or corroboration from a witness, the story collapsed--the actual person who was spat on turned out to be a friend of a friend. Or somebody's uncle. He writes that he never met anybody who convinced him that any such clash took place..."
(Excerpt) Read more at slate.com ...
Read Chicago columnist Bob Greene's book HOMECOMING, which documents cases of spitting on returning vets, names, dates and very detailed descriptions.
Here's your favorite "urban legend" again. :-}
My grandfather was never spat upon, but he did tell me of a time he was on a bus after getting back from Vietnam and some hippie came up to and called him a baby killer. The bus driver stopped the bus, picked up the hippie, and threw his a$$ off the bus and left him standing on the side of the road. The driver then proceeded to apologize to my grandfather for it and refunded him his bus fare. Great story!
Let's see, I was called a baby killer, a friend of mine was slapped (while in uniform with crutches and a neck brace no less), another had to go through the gauntlet at SF airport (spitting, throwing eggs, shouting, etc).
The 'Professor' does not know what he is talking about. Kind of like John F'n Kerry talking about his 3 month 'tour'.
Well, I don't know if you will find much in the way of documentation. You could talk to clinicians at VA PTSD clinics (sometimes called Trauma Services). The media did not want to report on such happenings, because it showed the left in a bad light.
There we were waiting on flights at the airport but we can't get on a plane after having been discharged; we still had on our Class A uniforms and you could see that a lot of the guys had had service all over the place.
For some reason all these people on student fare tickets and other standby nonsense were ahead of us in line even though we had government vouchers to pay full fair.
Never did find out why we couldn't get on the planes but as the hours went by there were more and more and more of us ~ and the airline was getting antsy.
Still couldn't get on. Someone was playing games somewhere.
Finally, bunch of us went to Avis or Hertz, and using my American Express Credit Card (which I'd had since before going in the military and was making real money) we rented vehicles to drive home.
I got paid by everybody, albeit after the fact, and after everybody was out of the Army anyway, but everyone got home. The car I was in took US 40 West, cut down to Cincinatti, over to Louisville, up to Indianapolis, and from there on to Fort Wayne and Detroit.
So, why do I remember the day I got discharged? Well, it meant I was going to live, was going home, would get back on track, and besides, all those total strangers I literally entrusted my good credit to were true to their honor even if no one else was.
I'm not the kind of guy that any one would ever spit on, but I know that wearing the uniform then resulted in much hostility. The haircut was a dead giveaway and it often made it impossible to mix, even in our old home groups.
I was stranded in a small town in Colorado for a week in 1972 with only my uniform to wear. I was ready for the cold shoulder, but was surprised that the people in that mountain town, while reserved in their manner, seemed to respect my army uniform and treated me well, a different reaction they we usually got in the big cities.
Airports like the one at Seattle had special rooms where we could relax and sleep between flights, it was a nice thing to do but I think part of it was to give us a relief from negative elements among the public.
we just had a national guardsman beaten by 5 punks for wearing his uniform. Does that count?
Everyone knows there was a second spitter . . . behind the gravelly road. That's why Lembcke couldn't find him.
Some of them were actually pretty nice to me, because "back in the day" lots of civilian kids looked like hippies just because that was in style, but they weren't really hate-filled radicals. They seemed more curious about me than hostile.
When I got out of the Navy and went to college, I proudly wore my pea-coat with my "crow" on the shoulder, and there were plenty of radicals around, but they never bothered me out of a sense of self preservation, I imagine .
They did, after all, think all us vets were a little dangerously crazy...
your experience would make for a really interesting movie
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