Profile In Courage
It’s not often enough I get to talk about things that make me renew my faith in humanity and the country, this is one of those very precious times. There are people out there who are the ones that should be celebrated beyond all others. They take the worst that life can throw at a person and instead of succumbing to adversity they triumph over it and validate the power of the human spirit. When the time comes they face down their foes and they deal with the aftermath.
‘Everything goes black’
On Aug. 19, 2006, everything changed.
Dwyer, then a 29-year-old captain, was part of a combined Special Forces-Afghan National Army patrol near a tiny Orzugan Province village in central Afghanistan when his team was ambushed at a bazaar. The attackers, part of a militia, outnumbered the joint U.S.-Afghan team, and were able to pin them down.
According to Military Times’ Hall of Valor database, Dwyer made various maneuvers in a vehicle to draw enemy fire away from pinned-down troops, then joined them in a secure position to return fire. He was in the back of a Humvee helping a turret gunner reload when he was hit by a blast from a rocket-propelled grenade.
The flash blinded him. He couldn’t hear.
His next thought was to get on the gun, but he couldn’t move. As Dwyer opened his eyes, he said, he realized he was slumped over the turret. The first soldier who got to him turned him over, and Dwyer, though he couldn’t hear, says he could see the soldier’s mouth form the words “dead guy” before moving on to the next casualty.
The next thing Dwyer saw stuck with him: The sun, bright in the background, as he lifted his left arm up and saw bones sticking out of his wrist.
“That is the vision that was burned into my head for the first several years,” Dwyer said.
The blast had taken Dwyer’s left hand, lacerated his right arm, torn through some of his esophagus and trachea, irreparably damaged his left eye and knocked out many of his teeth. It also sent a chunk of shrapnel into his right armpit, piercing his brachial artery. A combat medic was able to stop the bleeding, and Dwyer’s fellow soldiers kept him safe as they moved, over nearly an hour, to an area where it was safe for a UH-60 Black Hawk to land and fly him and other wounded soldiers to a hospital.
You’ve been rocketed, lost an eye, most of an arm, the people around you thought you were dead. When you get to the hospital you find you are going to have major disabilities for the rest of your life, just how many people can look at that and say HELL NO, and make it stick.
Then, he was lying in a hospital bed, recovering from severe battlefield injuries — missing his left hand and eye, unable to move his right arm and barely able to speakBut Dwyer, a Green Beret, didn’t let that stop him. Not only did he recover, he went back to Special Forces and climbed the ranks. He wears his war wounds with pride: Instead of an iris and pupil, his prosthetic left eye is emblazoned with the Special Forces crest.
“A lot of guys come back from a deployment and they might get a tattoo or they might wear some form of necklace or bracelet,” Dwyer said when he took command in June. “But I wear my Special Forces crest in my eye as a tribute to my guys who never had an opportunity to come home because they made the ultimate sacrifice.”
I of course thank Lt. Col Dwyer for his service to the country, but I especially thank him for being an exemplar to everyone who knows adversity in their lives. There are very few like him and their stories need to be told.
Berkeley is going into lockdown over one speaker, what are they going to do to deal with this group ?
By now everyone has heard U.C. Berkeley is going into lockdown over Ben Shapiro coming to speak. Gotta think Mr. Shapiro is pleased as punch about this. It’s not often nerdy intellectuals other than Lex Luthor can terrorize a city with their mere presence. The question though is if just Mr Shapiro can bring such chaos what’s going to happen when the Evil Legion of Steve Bannon, Anne Coulter and Milo Yilanopolous descend to wreak havoc and chaos.
Former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon will join conservative firebrands Milo Yiannopoulos and Ann Coulter and more than a dozen speakers at “Free Speech Week” on the University of California, Berkeley campus later this month.
The four-day event, starting Sept. 24, is likely to draw huge protests and ample media attention. It is being organized by a conservative group called The Berkeley Patriot.
“Mr. Bannon will deliver short remarks on the final day of Free Speech Week,” reads a Tuesday press release.
UC-Berkeley was the scene of violent protests earlier this year.
In February, a campuswide lockdown was issued after protests broke out against Yiannopoulos, who was scheduled to speak at the school.
The speaking event was canceled as university police urged students to shelter in place and avoid the protest area.
In August, pepper spray and smoke bombs disrupted a protest in Berkeley when violence broke out between groups of protesters resulting in 14 arrests.
Will there be enough room in the safe safe spaces ?
Will there be enough therapy dogs ?
Will there be anything left when the legion is done with the city ?
Tune in again to find out, same bat time, same bat channel.
The Horrible Racism Of The Pumpkin Spice Latte
Some people just need a good periodic kick in the rear. There’s just no other solution for this level of idiocy.
“Pumpkin spice just doesn’t taste as good when you add a shot of racism,” a feminist leader explained as the fall flavor began to pop up in coffee shops around the country.
The co-founder of UltraViolet issued the “shot of racism” statement Sept. 6. I knew Starbucks had a secret menu, but the baristas must really be keeping these racism shots on the down low.
A social media post from the group informed readers: “That favorite fall drink of yours is funding rent payments to white supremacy.”
Given the severity of the campaign’s language, one may assume profits from sales of Starbucks’ beloved PSLs are being surreptitiously redirected to the Klan or neo-Nazi groups. In fact, UltraViolet’s actual complaint is that a couple of Starbucks’ 24,000 locations happen to be in properties owned by the Trump Organization.
According to UltraViolet’s logic, by patronizing any of Starbucks’ thousands of stores, average consumers of the signature fall beverage are directly boosting the cause of white supremacy. How increased latte profits to the Trump Organization (not even the White House) impact the president’s policies on racial matters is left unclear.
Like any nonprofit, UltraViolet’s petition to Starbucks is hosted on its website, meaning it’s framed between two bright “Donate” buttons. Its organizers would disagree, but in actuality, this campaign is a PR stunt meant to increase traffic to their page
The nice things about this, are the people who are donating are almost certainly being fleeced, it may hurt Starbucks sales, and who knows Starbucks may sue.
Drink up That’s it for the Watercooler today. As always it’s an open thread