Earlier this week, we told you that the sight and sound of fireworks can trigger PTSD in a number of combat veterans. Well, Raw Story discovered that a bunch of bottom-feeders on Facebook thought it would be a bright idea to poke fun at veterans who ask their neighbors to be considerate in their use of fireworks as the Fourth of July approaches.
The group Military with PTSD is sending out free signs to verified veterans asking that their neighbors be mindful of their use of fireworks. Well, that didn’t sit well with OAF Nation, a community of former soldiers with very close ties to right-wing extremist groups. While OAF Nation (short for “Operator as f*ck”) members share pictures, jokes, and Internet memes using military slang and jargon, they also cultivate ties between veterans and the militia movement. Needless to say, you shouldn’t expect much in the way of decency from such a group. But even allowing for that, you would think that these people would at least have some standards.
Apparently not, if some posts that appeared on the official OAF Nation page and an affiliated Facebook page, “Operator as f*ck,” are any indication. One post that appeared on both pages made ugly homophobic jokes about a veteran posing in front of one of the Military with PTSD signs on his door.
Noting that the guy was wearing a shirt saying “I am comfortable with violence,” the poster asked, “Well which one is it, sister?! Are you ?comfortable with violence? or do you want people to cater to your fragility because you volunteered to be around sh*t that blows the f*ck up?”
Another post that appeared on the OAF Nation page showed a veteran standing with a similar sign, and implied that he was a “POG”–jargon for a “person other than a grunt.” According to this poster, “the difference between POGs and INFANTRY” is that real veterans wouldn’t mind their neighbors going “f*cking nuts with your fireworks.”
Both posts had been deleted by Friday afternoon. But the fact that anyone could have thought this was a good idea is just plain sickening. Is it any wonder that so many veterans with PTSD don’t reach out for help? They probably fear that if they do try to get help, they’ll be met with ignorant and hateful claptrap like this.
When you consider that as many as 20 percent of Afghanistan and Iraq veterans have to deal with PTSD, I have to wonder–how many people happened to see these memes before they were deleted? Do the members of OAF Nation want it on their consciences that they may have kept someone from getting help?
As far as I’m concerned, the idiots who uploaded these mocking pictures are the real cowards. If the leaders of OAF Nation have anything in them, they will issue a full apology.