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Movie Heroes vs Real Life

Movie Heroes vs Real Life Admin |

On this 4th of July Americans should pause in their usual celebrations to appreciate the full import of what this holiday really stands means to them personally. They should consider that millions of people around the world would gladly change places with any one of us – even those who are considered to live in poverty. They see our country as a shining example of freedom, not only in law, but freedom in opportunity to excel personally.

We should also pause to appreciate, not just those Sons of Liberty, who won the struggle to give us our independence, but those who have served, fought, suffered, and died to keep it. “Well, of course,” you might say. Yet there are prominent examples of those who show, not only a lack of appreciation, but a total disrespect for people who have worn our country’s uniform.

They show little regard for our system of government – even threaten (but seem to get amnesia later) to abandon their country if their candidate fails to win an election. Some have even worked against our country in crisis. Jane Fonda, for instance, posed for anti-U.S. propaganda in North Vietnam during that war, even betrayed our men who were being held captive in Hanoi by reporting them to their captors for trying to get her to smuggle out information. The men were subsequently beaten and tortured. Ms. Fonda is a beloved senior of Hollywood elite today. Michael Moore openly despises the country that has made him a millionaire and, along with actor Seth Rogen, a couple of years ago, called Navy Seal Chris Kyle a coward for being a sniper. Kyle is known to have saved the lives of hundreds of Marines and soldiers while notching 150 plus kills while protecting them in combat.

Celebrity sometimes gives a person an unearned aura of intelligence or knowledge. When an actor plays a tough or heroic part, or excels in those type rolls, he/she sometimes gets the respect that real life heroes never see. Of course, there have been actors who earned that respect. When William Holden starred in the movie “The Bridges of Toko Ri”, a story about carrier pilots during the Korean War, he had at least been a 2nd Lieutenant in the Air Corps in WWII. When James Stewart made “Strategic Air Command” it was with a background of 25 combat missions as a B-24 pilot over German occupied Europe. Clark Gable, at 40 and deemed too old to serve, managed to enlist and flew 5 “official” combat missions as a photographer/gunner in a B-17, though other crews reported he flew many more missions unofficially. Lee Marvin, playing a grizzled combat infantryman in “The Big Red One”, earned a Purple Heart, getting wounded as a Marine during the Saipan invasion while Eddie Albert, best known as a goofy millionaire in the TV comedy series “Green Acres”, earned a Bronze Star as a Navy officer for rescuing wounded and stranded Marines, using his Higgins boat as a shield to protect them during the bloody battle for Tarawa atoll. And Audie Murphy was thrust into Hollywood stardom after becoming the most decorated soldier of World War II, earning 33 awards and medals, including the Medal of Honor. He played himself in the true movie of his exploits, “To Hell and Back.” He suffered from PTSD for the rest of his life. When these men played their roles, they knew what their character would actually be feeling.

A Google search asking which current well-known actors are veterans will bring up a list of 100 famous actors. A few of those 100 are “current.” None are under 50 years old. Most are dead or too old for films. Not one current top star known for their heroic roles is on the list. None has ever heard a shot fired in anger. I’m not implying cowardice on any actor. But we should be careful when we attach more importance to an opinion based on the celebrity of the speaker. We should strive to understand what our country stands for, and what real courage and fortitude it has taken to make it the most admired country in the world.


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When Mark Wahlburg was in Lone Survivor he realized what the Seals went through. He is one of the biggest supporters of the military. There are a few actors that know that without the military they would not be able to do what they do.

Patrick McBride,

Eddie Albert did not earn the Navy Cross. He received the Bronze Star for his heroism at Tarawa.

Billy Myers,

In reply to Ray Burrington.
Jane Fonda was, and is, anything but a real life hero. Henry may have been a tough father, and he was a patriot as far as I am concerned. What his children did after they left the nest was not to his legacy, but he missed the boat somewhere along the line. Jane should have been tried for treason and executed when she was photographed sitting on the seat of an active anti-aircraft weapon while she was in North Vietnam. Then President Barack Obama wanted to make her the “Woman of the Century.” What does that say of his thinking ? Too bad the statute of limitations may have expired for her ??? Thinking along those lines, do you suppose any of the names on THE WALL are a direct result of her actions? Every time I hear her name mentioned , I get kind of a sick feeling because she is still walking the earth and the REAL HEROES came home under Our Flag.

Joe Miller – U.S. Marine Corps Veteran ( 1954-1962 ),

Eddie Albert actually won the Navy Cross!! When he was interviewed about winning it on the History Channel, his reply was something like this, “Why, I didn’t do anything to earn it. I’m not a hero. The Real Heroes were those Marines!”

Edward R Giddings Sergeant of the Marines 1969-1973,

Eexcellent essay! So tired of celebrities and politicians pontificating without a clue as to what the brave men and women of the military sacrificed and the gift they gave to every person in this country. Too stupid to realize they would have no freedom to spew their rhetoric if it weren’t for the veterans of of our wars.

Sgt. Larry Dombrowski, USMC, RVN 69-70,

re: Jane Fonda – 1970 USMC Cpl – early outed and returned from Okinawa [Red Beach orders changed, so never in country]. Bought a car to go across US [Calif to CT], which broke down 45 min after I bought it! [radiator clogged] in Woodland Hills CA. The gas station I was towed to turned out to be a retirement gift from Zsa Zsa Gabor to a former butler. He fixed for parts cost only [appreciated vets, and my lack of funds]. Test drive took us in front of Henry Fonda’s “house” [front gate]. His “in knowledge” = “Henry is a tough father; He has to be, Jane and Peter are dumber than doornails”. This of course, preceded her ’72 visit to N Nam, which according to some, fueled the US activism further, extended the US withdrawal, and may have accounted for 2,000 more names on the Wall, due to lack of proper military drive & support.


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