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Thursday, January 22, 2009

Pitchforks And Angels...UPDATED

What you compromise to keep, you will always lose in the end.
~~~~~O'Wise One


It's been a busy day for the milbloggers who have designated themselves the "Pitchfork Brigade". I received a facebook message late this evening from Susan, who organized the same named group on FB. Y'all remember what happened when she called out other milbloggers on Nick Meo of the Telegraph, don't you? Uh, Yeah. Major brouhaha.

Seems like more and more of them have answered the call to take to task those who try to mess with 'Our Guys'. Ok, since I'm a member as well, I'm answering Susan's call to arms.

Below you will find the latest scab that needs to be debreided before the infection spreads. Oh, just so you know Susan and I are joined by Aunty Brat, David M, CJ, and Lela. I'm sure that there will be others. Stay tuned for updates.

The following comes from David M at the Thunder Run. It's over there on the right listed as "The Best Daily Roundup".

Since 9/11/01 it has become quite the event to have military color guards present the colors and be present during the singing of the National Anthem at sporting events of all kinds, and at Super Bowl XLIII this will also take place. So to say I was surprised when I received this email from a distraught Marine Mom would be an understatement:

My youngest Marine called me this morning. In the course of the conversation he made mention of being part of the Color Guard for the ceremonies at the Super Bowl. He has been part of other Color Guards at other games and has been able to enjoy the entire game after presenting the Colors. HOWEVER, this will not be the case this time. The 12 man/women color guard will be presenting the Colors and then will be escorted out of the stadium and therefore not allowed to see the game. Steven and the 11 others are quite upset about this and have asked that I see if I could contact someone and have that changed.

What? The Super Bowl won’t let the military color guard stay and watch the big game? Yes you read that right. Was I skeptical? At first, but after I contacted the Tampa Bay host Committee through their official website and spoke to Katie Wagner, I was assured that yes in fact her email inbox is full of emails from upset Marine Mom’s all asking for an explanation. To Ms. Wagner’s credit, who by the way was extremely gracious during my questions the Host Committee has no control over game day decisions; that authority rests solely with the NFL.

What has become a common yet gracious act of allowing a military color guard to stay and watch the game from the side lines, in honor of their service to our country, this time has them being treated as if they are the unwelcome guests, common servants to be whisked away as soon as their task is completed.

Lela has added the email address of the person to contact for this slap on our Troops. I thought I would share it as well.

According to the Tampa Bay folks, that's who people concerned with this decision should contact. Her email is Mallory.Steinberg@NFL.com

**Update**

Here's the official reply to everyone's emails and phone calls. I just happened to lift it from the comments at Thunder Run. Sorry David, I had to do it. If you want to read some irate Americans, go read the rest of the comments. I'm telling ya, you don't want to mess with 'Our Guys'.

Reply from the NFL:
------ Forwarded Message
From: "Steinberg, Mallory"
Date: Fri, 23 Jan 2009 19:49:46 -0500
To: "Director @
Subject: RE: Super Bowel Color Guard

Thank you for your email.

Our longstanding support of the military is a proud NFL tradition, including numerous NFL players and coaches traveling overseas with the USO to visit troops. Last summer, Commissioner Goodell, Drew Brees, and Osi Umenyiora went on a USO trip to Iraq and Afghanistan with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen.

Since we had not heard about this directly from the military, we contacted our military liaison for the color guard immediately to discuss the issue. After speaking with our military liaison for the color guard, we will host the members of the color guard (12 people) in the stadium.

The background is this:
The members of the color guard have always been our guests at a Super Bowl party in a compound on the stadium grounds where they watch the game on big-screen TVs and enjoy food and beverage. That is how we have done it every year. The military provides an intra-service color guard as part of our pre-game tribute to the military that also includes the military fly-over of the stadium. Then we arrange a place for the color guard to watch the game along with other pre-game and halftime show participants (more than 2,000 people).

We appreciate your commitment to the NFL.

Best,

Mallory Steinberg
NFL Communications and Public Affairs

~~~~~


And now for the Angels. Soldiers' Angels that is. Again, from facebook, I received a note from Greta (official soldiers' angels website)

1001 heroes waiting to be adopted

Soldiers' Angels is asking you to help spread the word about all the heroes waiting for adoption right now. One letter a week and one small package a month during the length of the deployment is all it takes. "May no soldier go unloved."

Now that's a whole heap of 'Our Guys' needing some loving attention from home. Not really though when you stop to think about how many soldiers there are, stationed away from home, lonely, needing a reminder that someone loves them, is thinking of them, and praying for their safety.

I've got my limit already, but one is about to have mail stopped. After that happens, I'll be able to do more. But for those who haven't ever done an soldier adoption, Please won't you consider helping remind those men and women that they are loved? You won't regret it, I promise.

Oh, if you do, please don't send any peanut butter items. Soldiers have been cautioned to throw all items with it in it away. So don't waste your money. Also don't forget that Valentine's Day is fast approaching. Boxes need to be shipped 10-14 days prior to the 14th to reach them.

Unless they are with Vampire 6's team, who reported that they haven't received any mail since the 26th of December. What the heck is going on over there??

Anybody out there with connections to the mail systems? We could use your help!!

**Update**

As a few minutes ago, the official count of Soldiers waiting to be adopted is 772. While that is a commendable drop in numbers, it's still too many waiting. Do they make us wait for them to protect us? NO, they are out there standing watch 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Year in and year out. Please talk to your neighbors, family, friends, workmates, church groups, school buddies, anyone and everyone. Everyone enjoys the freedoms and protection 'Our Guys' give us.





And so it goes......

6 comments:

AirmanMom said...

ky...excellent post. Truly, you address important points. I have my soldier from SA...along with a few other soldiers, who receive packages and letters on a regular basis. It does feel good to take care of them in such a small manner. I was not aware of this Honor Guard matter, I'm off to do my part!
Thank you!

AM

Susan Katz Keating said...

Hey there, Ky-lady. GREAT post! No one disses our troops and gets away with it... And thank you, AirmanMom, for jumping in!

WOTN said...

Wildfire! This kind of thing warrants a speedy notification to the community.

The word is out and spreading. The Multiply community's version of the Pitchfork Brigade is notified (Concerned American Citizens) http://concernedamericans.multiply.com/journal/item/13/Oh_No_They_Didnt_The_NFL_Shoves_Troops_Aside

As are my readers: http://waronterrornews.typepad.com/home/2009/01/common-servants-uncommon-service-super-bowl-heroes.html

brat said...

I am still waiting to hear back from the NFL in reply to MY email to them.So far, nothing, but my pom poms AND my pitchfork are at the ready...

You never, EVER diss our troops and get away with it. Not on MY watch!

Ky Woman said...

Y'all know what? YOU ROCK!!!!

Love y'all. Thanks for the help. I see that they've reversed their decision. Smart of them, dontcha think?

I even hear that the number of 'Our Guys' awaiting adoption has gone down dramatically today. WOOHOOOOO. I'm lovin it!

AirmanMom said...

ky...thank you once again for bringing this issue to my attention. A few moments of our time, made a huge difference! Woo-Hoo!

~AM