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We got four and we’ll get more

The recent article about the Kent State college shooting in 1970 brought back some hard memories.

I doubt that most people today have any idea of the symbolism of that action in the minds of our American youth.

It was not the shock that Americans in the uniform of our Army fired live ammunition at a crowd of Americans, it was much, much more than that.

After all, who raised any concerns when in the previous years, such as the Detroit Riots in “67, the local police and the Michigan National Guard fired live ammunition at local citizens, killing 43?

What was different about Kent State? To young American men, it was shocking because of two things: College students were the children of the rich and elite and draft-exempt. It was generally thought that they could do what they wished and no one would ever consider disciplining them. They dodged the draft and would not serve their country because they were “too good” to die in Vietnam let alone on a college campus. They were “untouchables.” Think of Trump fighting his imaginary Battle of Bok Choy while his uneducated, poor white trash counterparts fought in the minefields of southeast Asia. The other thing that surprised us was that these draft dodgers were shot at by fellow draft dodgers — The Ohio National Guard. At that time, young men bought a slot on a guard unit in order to live. In my home county, $700 was the going price to have a politician find you a slot in a National Guard unit. If you went to college or went to the Guard, you stayed home and out of the kill zone of an enemy ambush.

But the worst thing about the Kent State incident was that the protesters were right. The U.S. should have stayed out of Cambodia. I fought in Cambodia, Vietnam, and Laos. Fighting to back the Pol Pot regime following the orders of our supreme war criminal, Henry Kissinger: “Take everything that flies into Cambodia and kill everything that moves.” Three million innocent Cambodian civilians died by the Kymer Rouge and we were their allies!

And those trying to stop the killing were the bad guys!

AL SEVER

Montoursville

Submitted via email

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