dksm: (Life is messy)
I first read about this issue on the Dave Matthews Band fansite, antsmarching.org right after the April Radio City Music Hall show. Dave had told a story about an article he read in "The Nation" about an Iraq War veteran, Jonathan Town, who had been injured in the line of duty and upon his return from Iraq was discharged after being diagnosed with a pre-existing personality disorder which in reality was more likely a result of his injury in Iraq. The soldier was one of thousands of soldiers who are being diagnosed with pre-existing personality disorders AFTER they have served in Iraq (after they had gone through psychological screening to be combat ready), when in reality their conditions are due to either being injured or suffering from PTSD. These soldiers are discharged and lose their medical benefits and in many cases are required to REPAY part of their enlistment bonuses (which can be in thousands of dollars).

The fact that this was happening was shocking. One reason given for the possibility for this happening is if the soldiers were diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, then the military would be liable for their medical care for this problem for as long as needed. In other words...they are trying to save some money. Some people from antsmarching.org found the soldier's contact info and sent him some money but there are thousands of soldiers just like him. The Dave Matthews Band started a petition online that they plan to send to the Secretary of Defense about the issue. Some Senators got together and sent a letter to the SoD about the issue.

I just think it is an issue that everyone should be aware of. No matter your beliefs about the Iraq war, everyone should be affected and moved by what is happening to these soldiers. Bob Woodward did a piece on the subject last night on Nightline. He even interviewed Dave Matthews for the piece. As, Dave mentions, Jonathan Town's case was later reversed and he received benefits from the military...other soldiers are not as lucky. Here is Dave's Interview....

Please sign DMB's petition and let your friends know about this issue.


Meanwhile, on a completely shallow note...the new Radio City Music Hall DVD, which is previewed in Dave's Interview (unintentionally) looks amazing.

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dksm

July 2012

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