Treat soldiers well |

Treat soldiers well


I was touched by an event that happened on an airline flight this past weekend. I felt compelled to write about it.

Just after the passengers boarded the airplane and the crew buttoned up the doors, a flight attendant invited a soldier in uniform traveling in economy class to come forward and sit in first class.

Why was I touched by this? Because almost 40 years ago I was in line at San Francisco Airport, in full military uniform, to board a flight to my hometown of Detroit. I had just returned from a year in Vietnam. I was pulled out of line, taken to a private room, and strip searched. When I asked why they were doing this to me, I was told I was a security risk. Me, a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, an officer and pilot in the U.S. Air Force who had just proudly flown over 200 combat missions in Vietnam in service to my country, was considered a security risk in my own country. The kicker was I carried a top secret security clearance. That incident has left a bitter scar on my soul all these years.

So thanks America, and Delta Air Lines, for finally getting your act together. Honor your servicemen and servicewomen. They deserve it.

And kick the politicians asses for making them fight these stupid wars we have no business fighting.

Stuart Pardee