I Blew It [Completed and Updated]

Fraxinus, a member of Free Republic and a very dedicated supporter of us soldiers. When he first arrived, he grabbed his flag, his poster, and his corner and went nonstop all night. He inspired me.

I went to Walter Reed tonight to watch the protests that happen every Friday night. I was able to meet man people that I’ve known for quite some time and some I never knew existed. I interviewed the opposition and the supporters. I actually interviewed the opposition first because I really wanted to know what was in their heads.

I was dressed in blue jeans, a t-shirt, an H&K ballcap, and my one-of-a-kind Army jacket that I had custom made when I returned from Iraq. There was no doubt that I was a soldier and I told everyone that I talked to so there was no confusion. I did not ask questions as a Republican nor a Democrat. I asked questions as a soldier. For the most part, I was able to maintain my composure speaking with the Pinkos. That didn’t last.

Pink Hat after we spoke.

I suck with names. Let’s just face it, I do. I don’t know what I need to do to make that better, but I really mean no disrespect…yet. I first interviewed “Pink Hat”. I went over to the anti-war crowd and asked who the spokeperson was for the group. At the time there were about seven people there. They held their signs that said things like “Support Our Troops – Bring Them Home Now” and “No To War”. Pink Hat claimed the title and spoke with her. We calmly discussed issues and she constantly told me that her decisions were based on being a mother. She has two girls, 19 and 16. I asked what she would do if her daughter told her she wanted to join the military. “I’d obviously try to talk her out of it,” she initially said. However, she said she’d support them if they “could explain why” they wanted to join.

The overall theme of the conversation was that fact that war isn’t necessary. Fighting isn’t necessary. They think that every problem can be solved with peace. It’s a great idea and I wish it could actually work. But, then I asked the tough question: What about the jihad? I did not see ONE sign that said “No To Jihad”, “Stop The Jihad”, “Bring the Suicide Bombers Home”. Guess what the answer was to that question….”I’ll bring it up to the committee.” I can’t make that up. The idea of calling for the jihadists, the terrorists, to stop fighting us needs to be voted on!! This is the agenda of Code Pink apparently.

I talked to a guy named Perry, dressed in a purple hat thing and vest. He was holding a sign that said “No Cuts In PTSD Funding”. I agreed with him. I agreed that we need to take care of our soldiers. Like all good war protesters, Perry was stuck on the WMD argument. I asked him if he had ever read about the fighter jets we uncovered in Iraq. Nope. I didn’t think so. The media seems to neglect that nugget of vital information. We discussed how difficult it must be to buy a squadron of jets and that the ONLY reason we found them was a tip from an Iraqi. He actually concurred with me at that point that if jets could be hidden, it wouldn’t be very difficult to hide a warhead or missile…WMD. Yes, there’s no evidence that Saddam possessed the weapons (to a degree), but there’s no evidence he didn’t either. So what was he doing with Code Pink when he seemed to genuinely care about us? “No has never been a war that could have been prevented,” he said.

I absolutely agreed. I told them that every COULD indeed be prevented…until we are attacked. The people that could have prevented war CHOSE not to. Al Qaeda attacked us. They could have prevented this entire thing. Saddam paid to have Bush 41 assassinated. He could have prevented war. He killed innumerous civilians in his own country. People we’re still finding the bones of to this day. He invaded Kuwait, a defenseless country. He chose to kick out the weapon’s inspectors and chose a non-peaceful solution. He subsidized the suicide bombing trade in Palestine and Israel, resulting in dead Americans. Yes, war CAN be prevented. But when all options are exhausted, we defend ourselves and those who can’t defend themselves.

I went to the corner where the soldier supporters were. Now I understand that some think you can support the troops and not the war, but for the purposes of this post, there are protesters and soldier supporters. Why do I say that? I didn’t see ONE American flag on the protester side. On the supporter side I couldn’t count all the flags I saw waving.

At one point towards the end of the night, I started yelling across the road. I was upset because the Pinkos had called the cops to have them check the permits of the supporters. I went down to there and asked them if they supporters the troops. Someone yelled “yes” from the other side. I then told them I was a troop and I’m asking them to leave. There were a few chuckles, but no one left. I started asking them why they weren’t protesting the Jihad. Where were their signs? Why was it okay to kill Americans, but when we retaliate they come out in force against war? Then, I saw something that made my blood boil: an imitation American flag. The stripes were lined with red missiles or bombs, the stars were zeroes and ones, and there was a huge blue dollar sign superimposed into the canton of the flag. Since the cops were checking their permits, I decided not to cross without using a crosswalk and made my way back over to the protesters.

When I got back over to them, they were huddled in a circle discussing the fact that they had to leave because no one had the permit to assemble there. I took a few pictures. “Princess”, the kid with the flag, saw that I was taking pictures and placed his huge sign between my camera and the protesters. The sign read “Let Them Heal, No Redeployment”. I couldn’t help but laugh. For those that don’t understand military jargon, a deployment is when we leave home for a mission (like to Iraq). When we come home, it’s called a redeployment. If we go back to Iraq again, it’s still just a deployment, not a redeployment. I thanked Princess for supporting the fact that the soldiers should stay over there and keep the fight going so that Al Qaeda isn’t here interferring with those soldiers trying to heal. He tried to argue his uneducated point that he meant we shouldn’t go back to Iraq. I told him his sign didn’t say that.
Princess is a study in irony. You can almost make out the “flag” in his back pocket.

The protesters disbanded and started packing up their signs. Perry came over and tried to refocus my attention away from the young peace warrior. I told him I wanted to talk to Princess now about his flag, which another protester was revelling in and taking pictures of. He had a t-shirt with the same flag image on the front. Because I was so enraged, I can’t remember what the shirt said under the flag. I asked him why he was disrespecting our flag. He said he wasn’t. He tried to make me feel stupid stupid by saying that the flag wasn’t a symbol of this country, the eagle was. I wasn’t so much thrown back by that fact, but by the fact that he even knew that. At least he finished 4th grade.

We argued over the “flag” for quite some time. I raised my voice and got very animated with my arms. I know this because when I got back to where the supporters were, they asked what I was flailing my arms about. Most of the exchange is a blur. He tried to tell me that his flag design wasn’t necessarily based on the American flag, but the french flag, which is also red, white and blue. Strike one: don’t compare the American flag to the French flag. He, like Pink Hat before him, tried to tell me that the whole reason we went into Afghanistan was to find and kill Osama. Strike two: if you’re going to bring up history, you should study it first. I told him if he was so preoccupied with us finding Osama, he should march down to the local recruiter’s office and help us find him. He said no way. So, I reminded him that if a high school teenager can steal his parent’s credit card, purchase a ticket and fly to Iraq, surely he could find himself a posse that would travel with him to Afghanistan to find the person he was so obviously preoccupied with. After all, Afghanistan is now a free country because of us. No bite.

I think I’ve said enough about this. As calm and collected as I usually am, even I couldn’t keep myself restrained. I’m not a physical person, so there was never any worry about that. Many times, the other protesters tried to get him to stop talking to me, but he was sucked in. His communistic ways prevented him from leaving…a sign of defeat. One quick note that I won’t go into because I got worked up about this too: I got into an argument with a guy I called Baldilocks because he said we don’t need a military at all. Yup, they support our troops all right.

I want to end with a picture and an observation. Over in Protester Land, I found a single flag. The flag bearer appeared to me to be a vet. He just looked like one. He didn’t hold a sign, he didn’t shout any slogans. He just waved his flag. But that was the only one I recall seeing.
Pinkos rally

However, I couldn’t find one person on the supporter side that DIDN’T carry an American flag. That tells me something.

Here I am speaking with Perry (thanks to Gunn Nutt for the photo)
interview with Perry

Here I am with some of the good ones (more props to Gunn Nutt)

“Discussing” things with Pink Hat (yet more credit to Gunn Nutt)

Read Gunn Nutt’s account of the evening HERE. She also talks about Joshua Sparling, whom I had the privilege to meet. I’ve listened to two interviews he had with Sean Hannity and Oliver Stone (i’m an AM junkie). Josh recently found out that he’d have to have his leg amputated.

As an add-on, I wanted to mention the wonderful people that go out there every Friday. I just realized I didn’t mention any of them. I really appreciate what they do. It was good to see all the flags and people supporting the soldiers. The cheers when the bus came back about drove me to tears. As I looked around at the supporters, the joy in their faces was genuine. These people really care. I’m proud to me a part of Free Republic.

41 Comments on “I Blew It [Completed and Updated]

  1. Code pink and orgazations of their kind have a long history of STRONGLY supporting military forces….just not those of the US or Coalition!

    I got into an argument with a guy I called Baldilocks because he said we don’t need a military at all. Yup, they support our troops all right.

  2. CJ, you’re a hero proved in liberating strife. God bless you.

  3. Howdy from the Great State of Texas!!! Me and my Mrs. were there in January for the Friday Night Freep at Walter Reed.

    We hope to be back soon to say thank you to the fine men and woman wounded in the protection of our Nation and the fight for our freedoms. Welcome to FreeRepublic!!!

    They are some of the craziest and most fun American Patriots that you will ever meet.

    Many thanks for your service.


    Leo Flood

  4. What a great post! And no, you didn’t blow it…I think you handled yourself much better than most of us would. Must be the training;)

  5. Hi CJ,

    Welcome to the Freeps at Walter Reed!! I love your account of the evening and the photos. It’s very addicting and hopefully I’ll see you there on my next visit to DC. You couldn’t find nicer folks to spend a Friday evening with and I encourage anyone in the area to attend. The hospitality is unmatched (…on the freepers 4 corners).

    Thanks for confronting the pinkos! I love watching them cringe from conversations with our soldiers.

  6. Hey CJ! Great post!! I can’t wait to be waving a flag outside WR during the milblog conference. You gonna be there that night?

  7. CJ-

    It seems you’ve been quite busy since you’ve moved. Thanks for the post on your observations of the supporters/protestors and props to you for keeping your cool with some of the heated “debates”. I enjoy coming in here, reading, and finding some answers to questions that I may have.

    Thanks again for all of your hard work!

  8. Rebekah, I’m going to have more about these people. I just finished watching over an hour from one of their “meetings” and I’m overly disgusted. I’ll have full coverage in a post sometime soon.

  9. The CodePink people just irritate me to no end. They claim, however weakly, to “support the troops”, and then do things like this! Shows their true hypocrisy.
    Couldn’t they find anywhere else to protest?

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  11. Way to go CJ!!!!

    Times like these I wish I lived closer to the action – but then again, I like living in little old conservative Arkansas….

    Give the troops my love!

  12. Very proud of you for taking the time to take a stand for something so important.

    I heard Joshua Sparling on Hannity also and just recently my kids and I sent cards and stamps to him and 9 others at Walter Reed. I too was sad to hear about his leg.

    I wish protestors would protest somewhere else. Protesting at Walter Reed is so evil and heartless after what these soldiers have been through. Great post.

  13. Thanks, CJ! It’s so great that you and the Freepers are doing this. I know if my daughter was at Walter Reed, I’d be so grateful that you all are there being a loving barrier between “them” and the troops.

  14. It makes me ill to think that those who “support our troops” yet don’t support what they are doing are taking advantage of wounded troops. My question to Pink Hat would be if you support our troops why don’t you let them heal in peace? Don’t they realize that all they are doing is making it harder on the soldiers that they “support”. I read on another site a while ago that the protestors were actually putting makeshift coffins on the side walk there when they first started at Walter Reed. Talk about making survivor’s guilt worse in soldiers that already have enough problems. I could not have been as calm as you CJ, and I don’t think I could go only because I would not like to spend the night in jail. I guess that is why I will never be president, and I was really looking forward to that.

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  16. Thanks for coming out, putting together this fine report and telling the truth.

  17. Sorry for posting twice. Just thought of this. The Run for the Wall will be held soon. Those that organize the good guys (Gun Nutt?) countering the jackasses might try and contact the organizers of the run. How’d you like to see a bunch of pissed off vets on bikes show up? I’d wager they’d have to bring the cleaning crews out to clean up the sidewalk!

  18. CJ I don’t think you blew it at all. You handled it with much more professionalism and tact than I probably would have. The pictures are great! Thanks for sharing. Hopefully more Heroes like you, will line up on that street in front of Walter Reed on Friday nights. The wounded definately need to see more support and less of the idiots. Keep up the good work! I’m proud of you!

  19. CJ,

    I was so appalled initially about the whole idea of the protesters, I did not thank you for giving us this account with pictures and for the added knowledge that there are the good and decent who come out to counter protest. God bless you and God bless these good and decent who are willing to lose a Friday night each week in order to show support at a place it must be most in evidence.

    Finally, writer Wordsmith makes this statemnet above:

    “Pacifism does not insure peace. And there is no peace in the absence of justice.”

    – a profound truism that doubtlessly escapes the anti-American protesters.

  20. CJ,
    Thanks for the post and all of the great pics!! They are great!! 🙂

  21. One of my favorite parts of your account:

    The overall theme of the conversation was that fact that war isn’t necessary. Fighting isn’t necessary. They think that every problem can be solved with peace. It’s a great idea and I wish it could actually work. But, then I asked the tough question: What about the jihad? I did not see ONE sign that said “No To Jihad�, “Stop The Jihad�, “Bring the Suicide Bombers Home�.

    Pacifism does not insure peace. And there is no peace in the absence of justice.

    My other favorite part is the image of you flapping your arms around and trying to stay calm and collected, all the while getting worked up.

    I love you CJ…and I mean that in the most hetero-way I can say! (^_^)

  22. Thank you for coming out CJ. It was nice meeting and speaking with you. Love your blog.

  23. CJ,
    I cannot for the life of me understand these people (pinkos)
    who protest our country fighting for our freedom and then say they support the troops. They simply do not know the meaning of supporting anything.

    Like some have said here, they (pinkos) wouldn’t even have the right to protest if the good soldiers at Walter Reed and elsewhere hadn’t fought for their right to do so. Shame on people who do this sort of dishonor to our country and our troops.

    Thanks CJ for giving them some food for thought. I would have been so mad, I couldn’t have expressed my views without throwing something.

    God Bless all of our troops at Walter Reed and elsewhere!!

  24. Good for you, CJ. CAn’t wait to read the rest of it. Only wish me & my family could have been there with you too.

  25. CJ, way to go! Proud of you and GunnNutt and Tom the Redhunter (both of whom post about their Walter Reed experiences) and all those patriots standing up against the pinkos. As one who cannot be there, I sincerely thank those of you who can!

  26. CJ the Great!!!!

    You were terrific (and very professional) last night. Poor “Princess” didn’t know what hit him! He’s been MIA the last few weeks, and then he shows up and you tear him a new one. HAHAHAHAHA! Thank you for joining us – and for being such an inspiration. You are a true hero!

  27. I detest seeing the protesters in front of Walter Reed every Friday night, but I just returned a little while ago from a trip to Reed and Fisher House and I am worked up about that in a different way. I just spent about 5 hours with a young soldier and his mother at the hospital and then drove them over to Fisher House to give him a little normalcy. He has been at Reed for over three months now and had a tracheotomy tube in his throat and feeding tubes in his stomach. I sat there with him and his mom while the nurse fed him through the feeding tubes; in fact, I held the food supplement for the nurse while she fed him. I also saw him smile as he sat outdoors on this beautiful DC day with other soldiers and their family members and joined in the conversations as best as he could. I also had another great visit with Sergio Lopez and his family at the playground behind Fisher as little Sasha played on the swings and other playground equipment. I had a wonderful day with these remarkable men and their families. It was a special day that I will long remember, and I am left with a wide range of emotions.

  28. CJ- you are only human – how you kept your composure as long as you did is amazing- don’t be too hard on yourself for letting your feelings out. Besides, they deserve to hear the reactions their idiocy provokes…..I hope you guys had a great time at the zoo – the one where the animals are NOT human…..!!

  29. Let’s see: Decent, rightfully indignant if not downright enfuriated U.S. Soldier on one side of the street – Code P wannabe dhimmis on the other, with a mockery of our flag.
    No question.
    I know which side I’d be standing on.
    Whether you ‘blew it’, as you say, or not.

    Pearls before swine is spot-on. h/t dusgalan

    (BTW, CJ, not so long ago didn’t the troop supporters acquire the permits to all 4 corners by WR? Or is this a different spot by the hospital?)

    And don’t let those widgets (who needs names?) get too far up your nose; your family wants you happy and healthy. Although busting out a good ‘mad’ occasionally can be cathartic.
    Well, enjoy the Zoo, and feeding the animals. Perhaps just not the pink ones.;-)

  30. CJ – All,

    CJ, thanks for coming out last night. It was an honor to meet you.

    These protests/counter-protests have been taking place at Walter Reed every Friday night since March 30, 2005. That’s right, an entire year. Thanks to the “media” for not informing our nation of this despicable action. Many media sources have been at the protests several times since the end of August.

    I disagree with the poster here that said the scum should be ignored. Before our (the TROOP SUPPORTERS) numbers increased and we were able to get some media exposure, the protesters signs said things like; “Maimed for a Lie”…”Sign here to Die for Halliburton”…”Troop Support=Better Benefits”…”Our soldiers need Jobs, Benefits, Education”…”Funding for Wounded not War” and many more. The signs were all in pink, today they try to blend with ours so those passing don’t know the difference. We have outnumbered them 5-1, but we still get no media attention, all you hear is about the growing number of anti-war protesters. The troops, including double amputees in wheel chairs, have come out and told them if they truly supported them, they would leave. Others actually told them to leave and that they did not want them there. The supporters have told them repeatedly to go to Capitol Hill, the Pentagon or the White House to protest, but they remained firmly planted at the gate of Walter Reed.

    They were also positioned at both sides of the drive way into Walter Reed. Anyone visiting the wounded troops, the troops returning from an evening out and our wounded being brought in from the airport had to drive between these disgusting creatures. Thanks to the efforst of the TROOP supporters (there are Marines at Walter Reed) we have been able to move them down the street, out of the sight of our troops and their families.

    Also, the protesters are not “kids” as some may think. Gael Murphey and Medea Benjamin were very active in the protests of the late 60’s and 70’s and have made a very lucrative living as the face of anti-American protesters ever since.

    FYI: They have started protesting at Balboa Naval Hospital in SoCal.

  31. Thank you for being there. I knew they had a mock flag but I never took a close look at it. The pinkos routinely call our troops killers and occupiers while pretending to support them. They use the troops as political props and it is disgusting.

  32. CJ I totally understand your frustration and felt the very same thing myself when I stayed with Sabo back in early October and went to Walter Reed with her. I was so angry just driving down the street and seeing them there. My first instinct was to swerve over and run over them, but I was able to remind myself that not only would that get me in trouble, but it would also reduce me to their level. You’d think, instead of protesting the very people who’ve sacrificed so much to allow them to continue to have their right to protest, that they’d take their protests elsewhere, like maybe protest the politicians……. But regardless of those idiots, you’re letting the wounded know that as a fellow soldier AND an American citizen, you’re there for them and appreciative of what they’ve sacrificed for our Country. The good you do, FAR outweighs the hate they’re attempting to spread.

  33. CJ: I know you are trying to understand these people, but why “cast your pearls before the swine?” Stay away from them, don’t associate with them. Instead, go into the Hospital as you have done before and continue to show support and good will to those comrades who have given so much. Pay no attention to the swine and gutterbugs who don’t even respect our country’s flag. They aren’t worth spit, if they cannot show the lowest level of respect for our nation.
    Have a good day at the zoo! Hope you bring back pictures.
    dusgalan of mt

  34. I’ve read about this protest since its inception. These idiots don’t have a clue as to the harm they are doing to our military and to our country. I await the rest of your story. Don’t let these jackasses ruin your time in DC.

  35. I want to thank you again for being there last night and that it was an honor to Freep with you. It was refreshing for someone to get it with Code Pinko’s. They are evil and they commies. I got to see that first hand Thrusday the 9th at AACC.
    Again I just want to thank for your service and joining for our Freep.
    Mrs TroopRally,
    Free Republic

  36. CJ,

    I dont know where you get the patience to do this sort of thing. I really appreciate your stories and anecdotes. You should write some Op/Eds for major newspapers about these experiences. I dont think I could last more than a few minutes without breaking somebody’s face or tearing up in anger at what morons these pinkos are. It completely baffles me how they dont understand the threat to our countr.

  37. CJ,

    Every Friday Night they Are Outside Walter Reed Hospital???? It is incomprehensible. You asked the right question. There simply was no answer. They are not anti-Jihadi; they are anti-American!

    It was announced yesterday that a peace activist by the name of Tom Fox had been found dead, murdered by Jihadists in Iraq. They would just as calmly kill Code Pinkers. The Jihadists are no respecters of anything American and no distinction is made between Patriots and those who would seek peace at any cost. The peace activists seem locked into the old, cold war, left wing politics in which the Soviet did appreciate the distinction and rewarded it. These are young people from what you say; no matter, they are still inheritors of that old left mentality. It is sad to think that Mr. Fox may, in his extremity, have come to see the fallacy of his prior thought pattern. He was not on the level of Code Pink and I can and do feel regret that he has been slain.

    But , CJ, it is beyond my comprehension that they would go to a HOSPITAL to protest. They can mouth the idiocy that they support the troops but not the mission, however, the fact that they would go to a HOSPITAL were there are hurt and wounded soldiers gives the lie to that fiction fully and completely. I spent 25 years as an ICU nurse and the idea of attacking someone sick, hurt or wounded and at a life, low point is a new definition for cruel and unusual punishment. Of course, these are the same people who would protest Gitmo as inhumane!

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