Resilient nation will overcome this crisis

An invader – COVID-19 – has silently permeated our land and effectively brought life as we know it to an utter standstill. From coast to coast, northern border to southern, big city to small, town hall to Capitol Hill, regular everyday life in America has mostly come to a halt.

In the last few days, municipal, county and state government officials have issued stay at home orders to residents and required or requested non-essential businesses to close or find alternative service capabilities. A new form of social etiquette has been introduced into our lives which mandates respecting an invisible barrier around each of us of six feet or more. Schools from kindergarten to college have sent their students home, churches have shut their proverbial open doors, businesses have closed and everyone is just stuck in place, waiting for tomorrow.

We have witnessed panic buying and hoarding of everyday goods on a national level that this country has not seen in recent memory. People are understandably concerned and afraid. The unknown and uncertainty can produce many emotions and fears and Lord knows we are in the midst of plenty of that.

However, one thing is certain – we will come out of this. What we as individuals, communities and a nation look like on the other side, and what changes in our personal, social, societal and governmental behaviors remains to be seen. This experience will place an indelible impression on each of us individually as well as our collective national psyche. Similar to the Great Depression or WWII, where people endured great personal and shared sacrifice that shaped their attitudes forever, this event will do much the same. Similar to professions such as the military, law enforcement, first responders, etc., our shared COVID-19 experience can influence and shape the future, hopefully in a positive sense. The sense of commonality and being part of a group enduring and fighting back against a common enemy is profound and many times unforgettable.

This common sense of coming together and persevering in the face of the unknown brings us all together and breaks down barriers. We are seeing examples of this every day across the country. People are singing from their balconies, preparing and delivering meals to the needy, volunteering, coming out of retirement, developing new and different methods in industries, making the hard decisions to retain their workforce despite business being shut down and generally being a good neighbor.

To me, this is what America is all about. In times such as these, America shines and is at its best. Throughout our national history, the everyday American has demonstrated the attributes that have shaped and built this country through thick and thin.

I believe that because of these attributes, despite a constant stream of adversities thrown our way and the never ending theme of widening divisions spewed on us by those wishing to sow the seeds of negativity, that America, as it has in the past, will prevail by the virtues, steadfastness, stubbornness and resiliency of the common everyday American.

Viper One Six – Out.

Dave Shearman is the author of “Outside the Wire in Blue.” For more information, visit www.outsidethewireinblue.com or www.david.r.shearman.com

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“Outside The Wire In Blue” Book Signing event Kansas City, KS. Feb. 23, 2019 1PM-4PM Frontier Justice Shooting Center

Hello Everyone,

Co-Author JT Taman and myself will be conducting a book signing event in Kansas City for our nationally released book, Outside The Wire In Blue- The untold true story of American Cops downrange in the War on Terror.

Date/Time: February 23, 2019 1PM TO 4PM

Location: Frontier Justice Shooting Center

10000 France Family Drive, Kansas City, KS.

Please come out and join in the fun. JT and I will be signing books. We have cool T-shirts available. We’ll be talking about the incredible story and character of the American Police Officers who forsake all to help the US Army and Marine Corps fight the War on Terror in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Visit our website: http://www.outsidethewireinblue.com

Facebook: Facebook.com/outsidethewireinblue

See you there!

Viper One Six – Out

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Veterans Day thanks, Happy Birthday Devil Dogs, Battleships and Cutters, & thoughts of Service

USS North Carolina (BB-55)

I am writing to you this day from my U. S. Coast Guard office at Sector Headquarters in Wilmington, NC where I am thinking about the upcoming Veteran’s Day holiday. My weekend Drill holds special meaning in that I have the complete honor to be “in uniform” this weekend serving my beloved country. What a honor it truly is to serve this great nation – the greatest country on earth!

Some thoughts: At breakfast this morning, while minding my own business but in full military uniform, an unknown gentleman approached me and said, “Thanks Chief for your service.” I thanked him and we conversed for a bit as he had served in the U.S. Navy for a time.

From there, I arrived at my office and completed the final touches for the promotion ceremony for one of my crew members who had chosen the USS North Carolina as the venue for his promotion to First Class Petty Officer. What a beautiful and majestic North Carolina Class Battleship she is and a great place to conduct such a ceremony.

Later on, during a much needed mid-morning break, I had walked up to the corner store to buy an energy drink. As I stepped up to the counter to check out, a lady – a total stranger – asked if she could buy the drink for me. I initially refused, thanking her just the same. For me, as I imagine for many veterans, it can be a little awkward to be the recipient of such generosity from a total stranger, especially as in this case, there was about ten other people waiting in line. The kind woman insisted by playfully grabbing my drink, placing it on the counter, and saying, “I want to thank you your service.” Humbly, I thanked her for her thoughtfulness and kindness all the while wondering what I could say to her in return, my words falling short.

During our brief conversation, she remarked that her entire family had previously or is currently serving in some component of the military and therefore she knows firsthand the sacrifices made by military members and their families. Those comments somehow made me feel even more unworthy of her kindness and eventually, we said goodbye, wished each other a great day, and went our separate ways.

I have been serving in uniform since 1981 when I first enlisted in the Marine Corps and found myself standing on the yellow footprints at Parris Island, S.C. Since then, I have had the distinct honor and privilege to serve in two service components; on active duty with the “Always Faithful”, Marine Corps, and in the reserves with the “Always Ready”, Coast Guard.

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Happy 243rd Birthday fellow Marines!

In 1981, when I joined the Marine Corps, public sentiment wasn’t terribly negative toward the military but it wasn’t overly positive either as the effects of the Vietnam War were still lingering in our society. Because of this, we Marines, never wore our uniforms off-base as we tried to blend into the community in an attempt to avoid unnecessary attention.

Nowadays there is generally a positive sentiment toward our veterans and acts of random kindness such as simple inter-personal incidents, like I described above, to full-scale national programs is common place. My shipmates and I routinely walk around Wilmington near the Cape Fear River where the USCGC Diligence is moored and find ourselves the recipients of “thank yous” from passersby.

USCGC Diligence Wilmington, NC

No doubt, public sentiment changes over time and is commonly based on current events, societal views, and the collective experiences we have as individuals and as a nation. When we win wars, as we did in WWI and WWII, or unified as a nation as we were soon after 9/11, veterans are praised and public sentiment is generally positive.

Unfortunately, we as a nation have not always appreciated all of our Veterans, specifically, those who served during the Vietnam War and the Forgotten War – The Korean Conflict. These Veterans need to know how appreciated and loved they are for their service to our country.

I have to express another issue that is weighing on my mind this morning. Yes, I know the difference between Veteran’s Day and Memorial Day and I know you do as well. With Veteran’s Day being the day where we honor our veterans who are alive and who have served or presently serving and Memorial Day being a day of remembrance for those warriors who sacrificed their lives for our great country.

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US Army Major Brent Taylor, AFG

But this morning, I am thinking of the soldiers killed in Afghanistan with the most recent being U.S. Army Major Brent Taylor from the Utah National Guard. Major Taylor was unfortunately Killed In Action November 3, 2018 while serving in Afghanistan. Here was a man – a citizen, public servant, warrior, and patriot – who lived a life of service dedicated to this country and his community. Major Taylor not only served in uniform but served as the Mayor for the City of North Ogden, Utah and he is the epitome of all that is good in America, the good in individual Americans and what “serving one’s country” truly means.

What is the point of this blog? I guess it is, thank you for your appreciation of our Veterans this weekend. It means a lot to us even if we don’t always know how to receive the attention – as I do. Don’t stop random acts of kindness for our Veterans who sacrifice so much for our country each and every day. Don’t forget their spouse and families too. It is very much appreciated.

However, if you can or want to do more then please reach out to a Veterans organization of your choosing and support their efforts to help those who are suffering from life altering physical injuries and the terrible effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

These veterans and their families need our love and support as they struggle with their lives after laying everything on the line for us as defenders and warriors of this great nation. Unfortunately, we are losing far too many of our Veterans to suicide each and every day.

This November 11th 2018 at 11:00 AM we will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the end of the Great War, the war to end all wars – WWI – Armistice Day. If you happen to be in the Kansas City area, do yourself a favor and visit the WWI museum located downtown and immerse yourself in the rich history this museum offers and partake in remembrance of this significant event in our nation’s history.

Lastly, never forget we are all in this together and we truly do need one another.

God Bless.

Viper One Six – Out

170px-USCG_CPO_Collar

CPO

Please visit www.outsidethewireinblue.com

to check out our site and buy our new book Outside The Wire In Blue.

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Call to vote not violence

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Did you catch the latest re-run of Columbo? How about the Andy Griffith show? I ask because that’s about all I’ve been watching for some time now to include early Christmas shows on the Hallmark Channel. All of which I do enjoy.

But when you get to that point, I think it is fair to say that you’ve just about had enough of the junk that’s on TV, specifically the overtly biased so-called “news outlets.”

Of course it’s not news anymore. It’s not factual information that a professional reporter relates to the public so the public can be informed. No, the days of Walter Cronkite are far over and in past history.

We are now involved in Information Warfare (Info War), Psychological Operations (PsyOps), and straight out propaganda.

The problem with the aforementioned activities is that their design is to stir the populace into action and often times into violence. This is the objective of these types of operations and, unfortunately, I fear we are seeing the results of the activities right before our eyes.

The obvious questions are: Where does it all end? What is the objective of the PsyOps and Info Wars that is being perpetrated upon the American public? In what manner does all the pent up frustration fueled by all the propaganda present itself?

Does it drive people to voting booth or, as apparent violence proponent and far-left actor, James Cromwell, said recently to the point of “blood in the streets?”

Now just think for a moment how absurd and irresponsible it is to make a statement proposing “If we don’t stop [President Donald Trump] now, then we will have a revolution for real. Then there will be blood in the streets…” as Cromwell Tweeted did a few days ago with the nationwide coverage. Cromell, J (2018) Twitter.

Is that what we really want in this country, all out riots and blood in the streets? All because of differences in opinion? Really, is that what people want and is that the new normal in America?

Has everyone sincerely and honestly thought this thing out? Have the politicians, the rhetoric machines, the political action groups, the community action groups, and the elitist facilitators seriously thought out the end game of all of this propaganda?

Do they think that once the doors blow off of this gig that they can rein it in? It’s really time for all this hatred to stop. Because once the doors fly open, the real ugliness of humanity presents itself.

This should not even be a discussion in this country. It is difficult to even put pen to paper to address this. This is not how we operate in this country. There are many people in this town, myself included, who have witnessed firsthand what happens to a society with the fabric that is holding the fragile social structure together is torn apart. Folks, it’s not pretty. In fact, it’s scary and absolutely ugly.

Are we prepared as a nation and as fellow Americans in 2018 to hurt one another because of disagreements of ideas?

There are many, many outspoken activists who seem to think that the concept of stirring the citizenry into a frenzy is somehow a means to an end. I suppose it is if you like violence. But do these people think that while they sit back and watch society be destroyed that somehow they will be spared? That violence will not visit their door step?

I don’t think that the agitators in our society today have any realistic idea of how serious this is in and what they’re doing. They are so filled with absolute hate that they have lost all semblance of reality.

Is this how it’s going to be every election cycle?

So, when a Democrat eventually gets elected into the White House is it open season for opposing party to go in and call for the election to be turned over, or to call for the impeachment of the President, or to call for the harassment of anybody affiliated with the opposing party, or to call for the violent harassment of elected leaders and ordinary citizens? Will it be the new norm in America to be able to make outlandish vile statements such as recommending the beheading of the President or to have a coup?

Will the new norm be that anyone seeking to serve in office get their family’s lives ruthlessly dragged through the mud and destroyed?

Is that where we are headed?

I could go on and on, but friends, is this what we want in America? Is this the America we want for our kids and grandchildren? I hope and pray with vigor that it is not because chaos and societal destruction is not pretty and it takes a lot to come back from it – if ever.

ballot-box_13724276Please exercise your right to vote for whomever you want to. That is your right. Please be an advocate of civility, of peacefulness, and respect for others. Engage in civil dialogue and, above all, respect the Rule of Law.

America is truly a great nation filled with great people who have led the world through tough times. Let’s come together to lead ourselves through this tough time in our nation’s history.

 

Viper One Six – Out

Also visit http://www.outsidethewireinblue.com and order your 1st edition hard cover edition of my new book that I have co-authored with JT Taman.

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Only in America – Crime and Punishment and the Ballot Box

America can be a confusing place at times.

Take for example some of our laws concerning violations of hunting or fishing licenses and regulations. Did you know that violating a hunting or fishing law in most states is at a minimum a monetary fine? However, the penalty can also be a misdemeanor which is punishable in jail for less than one year or it could be a felony and punishable in state prison.

These are potentially serious criminal penalties for violating a fairly innocuous law.

Or, how about the statute recently signed into law in Chesapeake, Virginia where the local government made it illegal to “trick or treat” by anyone over the age of 12 years. Man-O-Man, this law is serious! Per City Code 46-8, any person over the age of 12 years who is “trick or treating” on Halloween will be found guilty of a misdemeanor, required to pay a fine between $25.00 and $100.00, and potentially confined to jail for not more than 30 days.

Oh boy, better raid Jimmy’s piggy bank and find out a way to break him out of the ole “big house” for violating that heinous law.

Of course you have heard about the tremendous crime wave occurring in California where thousands of people face six months in jail and a fine of $1,000 for offering a customer in a food establishment a plastic straw! Wow, now that is a hefty penalty and if the jails and prisons where not already overcrowded they soon will be! Way to go, Jerry Brown.

These laws and the criminal penalties associated with them are but a few of the thousands of laws across this land that are on the books at the local, state and federal levels and which can supposedly penalize any and all citizens in very serious ways.

The reason America can be so confusing is that when you start researching some of these ridiculous laws and find that a 13 year old could go to jail in Chesapeake, VA for 30 days for donning his Power Ranger costume on Halloween or a hunter might pay a hefty fine or punished by a misdemeanor or felony but a person found to be illegally entering this country does not have to worry about being prosecuted at all!

More disturbing is that there are some people and law-makers in America who find the crime of illegally entering this sovereign country so insane and off the hook that they not only want to remove the law from the books altogether but they want to dismantle an entire federal agency responsible for its enforcement. Along the same line, elected leaders of municipalities can openly break federal immigration laws without blinking an eye and without the threat of confinement.

But you better believe that handing out a plastic straw to a customer or “trick or treating” are both far more serious crimes and ones that demand enforcement at every level.

Another thing that seems seriously out of whack is the fact that only in America can sitting Senators make baseless and unfounded felony accusations against a U.S. citizen of unquestionable character and not worry one iota about receiving a ticket in the mail, standing before a magistrate, paying a fine or facing any jail time. Yes, only in America can a sitting Senator attempt to disparage the entire life of an individual and his family for his or her own political gain and get off Scott free.

Fortunately, there is a very powerful little remedy known as the ballot box where confusing things such as these can face change though voter participation.

Viper One Six – Out

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