Vietnam: Affecting People Today Essay

1981 words - 8 pages

Vietnam: Affecting People TodayThe Vietnam War is still a touchy subject to many people. My Father was in Vietnam, but he served as a secretary. In this position he did not see many of the atrocities that most veterans did. Many Vietnam veterans are still today psychologically, physically, and emotionally damaged. For many, the Vietnam War is still raging, but in a different place, inside their heads. The Vietnam War presented a new set of hopes and fears that many people had not faced before. The atrocities that occurred in the POW camps of Vietnam are still affecting people today.Back in the 1960's, life for a teen-ager was not a whole lot different than it is now. Teenagers drove their cars around 'cruising' for the opposite sex, they listened to music, watched some TV. Then, the Vietnam War started to threaten the lives of many young Americans. For the first time in history, people were watching on Television the youth of America being sent out to fight in a war. Many people started fearing the infamous 'draft,' and took actions to see that they were not drafted. Some people kept moving every couple of months so that the draft notice wouldn't catch up, some people burned their draft notices, and some even moved to Canada as to avoid the draft. Yet, on the other hand, there were still some people that weren't afraid of going to war, or at least that's what they thought. Others were mellow about the whole situation, some were enraged and protested, and yet others saw the war as something they could become a hero in. Life today for teenagers is pretty relaxed. The only major stress points are school and members of the opposite sex. Now that the Cold War is ended, the thought of the draft is almost non-existent in most minds. Several years ago there was the Gulf War, but teenagers today were to young to worry about the draft. The only thing they had to worry about was older brothers and sisters being drafted, but most were still to young to understand what it all really meant. Some teenagers today do commit themselves either to enroll in the Armed Services, or participate in the Reserves or the R.O.T.C. Most teenagers though want to stay right where they are and not have to worry about war.My father, Bernard Anderson, was one of the more mellow people going into the draft. He was to be a gunner, manning a Howitzer on the front lines. However, due to an accident during boot camp, he was made to be a secretary. A good friend of his, Dwaine Steel, was also to be in the war, also on the front lines. They spent a lot of time 'hanging out' with each other before going to boot camp, and somehow thought that they would be all right. My father was very worried about what might become of him, and had hopes of seeing him again. He was wrong. Dwaine Steel was killed in the line of duty on the front lines of the Vietnam War. My father was done in Vietnam several months later, and returned to his fianc', my mother. The death of his friend was a very humbling...

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