This morning I woke up to the sound of thunder rolling across the District. This wasn’t your father’s atmospheric thunder. This was the sound of thousands of motorcyclists converging on D.C. for Memorial Day events. While the parade of bikers closed streets and shook windows, it was an inspiring sight to behold. The ride was a visible reminder that while our soldiers may serve in far away lands, their sacrifices will never be forgotten.
This past week I was tasked to observe and report on a House Subcommittee on Veterans Affairs hearing. Fresh-eyed and bushy-tailed, I expected a rousing debate and blunt testimony from both veterans and congressmen. Especially since it was the week before Memorial Day, and especially because of the weight placed on veteran’s health in the past election.
It was indeed a shock when I found only one representative in attendance, amongst a smattering of Legislative Assistants of course. It is thus no surprise that many veterans recieve sub-par health care and that many of their needs go unmet. After all, how can the government address veteran’s issues if our elected officials are absent from discussions about their most pressing needs?
I know I was not the only one to wake up to the sounds of Rolling Thunder. I hope our elected officials heard the roar from the streets and felt their windows shake. I hope congressmen and women translate their experiences this Memorial Day weekend into programs and policies which support the men and women who have sacrificed so much to defend this country.
That’s it. God Bless America! Have a lovely, safe Memorial Day!