Since its inception, VeteransTales.org has been movinging toward the establishment of a teaching program for veterans in order to fill in the growing gap between modern education in America’s schools about America’s history, and the reasons America was created in the first place.
It takes only three generations for those things to be lost to a culture, and we’re about halfway there.
I set this process of disintegration out in an earlier piece, “Conservatism, Those Other Guys, and the Vetetans”.
When the Soviet Union fell in 1992 virtually no Soviet citizen had any memory or knowledge of the nation (or family) that extended beyond 70 years. I know, I was there. Freed in 1992, they were still had no fixed stars in their heavens to guide them; no history, no church, no moral base.
For nearly two hundred years since our Founding the extant family, our public schools and universities, and our several religious institutions passed these culture-surviving ingredients onto the next generation. And the next. But since the mid-1960s those institutions have been under assault or reshaped as a matter of government policy.
Veterans are uniquely situated to help hold the line, and even pass it on, while public institutions no longer try.
Our Program has three objectives; Find & Recruit, Teach & Train, then Place veterans.
As you already know, finding veterans isn’t hard.
Every town, every school district has veterans. Most towns have a VFW and American Legion chapter. Wounded veterans have their own unique sponsors, Wounded Warriors Project, Disabled American Veterans (DAV), and dozens of service organizations from every branch.
We’ll contact virtually every one in coming days via email and social media. But in larger bureaucratic organizations as many now are, I doubt the right people will ever see or read this.
More than donations, if you know any of these people, you would be doing our Cause a great service simply by passing this forward, preferably with a “Deserves a look” or “Attaboy” attached..
it would also be nice if you would contact me (contact info below) as piercing many of your corporate veils is a daunting task without a personal reference.
Allen and I were never palm-grippers in those circles.
All we have to offer are programs that need some sponsorship and partners, and the skill to design them. And a little administrative jump start.
Our objectives are simple:
To put as many veterans as possible in front of as many school kids, aged 11-to-18, as possible, in public schools if allowed, and in other parent-approved settings if the public schools are not available….
And to develop from that open door, other programs.
Our mission will be to train vets to deliver Lectures and Q-and-A sessions about the essence of America, and its relevance to them in their lives as they go forward, beginning with why America is different from all the other countries throughout history; and why so many ordinary peoples in those countries love us and why their political class generally don’t.
(I found this very effective in teaching cynical and indifferent young inner-city black mothers who only needed my classes for a degree, having nothing to do with their degree program.)
These are First Principles and in these age groups veterans have more street cred than any other segment of American society to pass them on.
The political elites of most of the world have always felt negatively about America, even as it’s our shoulders that most of their stand on, and have for the better part of a century.
Only recently have many inside our own political and educational culture become equally hostile to the notion of American uniqueness, hence the current movement to erase that history for the next generations’ memory.
At VeteransTales.org, in the VETS IN CLASS section (at the top banner), we’ve begun a discussion as to why veterans are uniquely qualified to carry out this mission; namely, they’ve invested skin in the game most other Americans have not.
Moreover, they volunteered that skin when they didn’t have to.
With the passing of the World War II generation, when virtually all Americans were involved in the war effort, this is an important distinction.
(We have in queue the establishment of a 501 (c) (3) foundation website, name as yet undetermined since several others already use the John 15:13, “No greater love…” theme, and we don’t want to confuse our unique programs with theirs. Once it’s up and running all the “Vets in Class” articles will be moved to the new site for easier access. VeteransTales is a popular stand-alone story site.)
Our purpose is to convince veterans groups to help us help them recruit members to teach. Some as spare-time volunteers, others as fulltime teachers in school systems that will allow it, still others in local outreach, as to home-school organizations. And many as paying jobs.
All these things will occur much more quickly and efficiently if we can persuade individual organizations to take these concepts under their wing and then let us simply help them with developing it.
- For training material, we’re developing a “manual” or syllabus for two basic age groups, 10-12 years olds and high school-college aged students. I can think of no one who can grab the attention of a middle-schooler quicker than a veteran. And the memory that will last for many years.
- We plan to reach out to Millennials via social media and campus organizations, and hope to have a plan on line by 2020.
- We have already developed some attention grabbers, such as “Why do people join the military when they don’t have to?” which is an opener to the history behind volunteerism in America, which then leads into a longer string of firsts that are unique to America and “being American”. In this way we can teach young people to connect more than two-dot in a logical equation, again, which is second nature to most military veteran.
- For example, in all human history, for over 5000 years, from the era of the Pharaohs in Egypt, through great empires and civilizations, then countless kings and rulers, no ruler ever sent his army to rescue or free a people in bondage. Not a single soldier ever died rescuing or liberating a stranger in another part of the world until 1860, when over two million Americans volunteered and almost 400,000 of them lost their lives, to end slavery in the United States. Americans have since rescued other peoples several times and are still the only nation that incorporates freeing oppressed people in their military missions.
- It was not a coincidence that this occurred because America is largely a Judeo-Christian nation, and those values have been cemented in the roots of our culture from the beginning; and why it is a target and at risk today.
- Making these connections allows our instructors demonstrate that America is the first nation in history to be created from the bottom up, by the people instead of by kings and rulers. And that it was likely no accident, not a freak of nature. Even in our best days, love of country was less a function of public education than more direct lessons were learned at the family hearth, and at the dinner table, public events, and yes, in the many, many churches. With immigration waves of late 19th and early 20th centuries, our public schools were tasked to teach about the shoulders they stood on, and the sense of gratitude it engendered.
- Our training curricula will consist of a number of lectures about American firsts and First Principles, and it will begin with this singular fact of American exceptionalism, why two million (largely) farm boys would enlist to go save people who, as a race, they had never seen or spoken to, and only heard about in church?
- There are dozens of American firsts, in science and economics, all of which are relevant to students of every generation, and all based on the uniqueness of our birth.
Allen Ness is a retired Army Master Sergeant paratrooper and Iraq War veteran. He is a known artist, country music raconteur, Kipling aficionado, accomplished military historian, with a developed style of story-telling reminiscent of Ring Lardner. His writings can be found at VeteransTales.org. and Unified Patriots.com, where he writes a column “From my CP” when not working the family farm in southwestern Minnesota.
He retired from the Army at about the same time I came in from the cold in East Europe, in 2008.
I’m a Cold War analyst-consultant in production and-small business matters, 1991-2009, mostly in the old Soviet Bloc of eastern Europe, and former Army trial lawyer. I’ve scattered my biography through 10 years of essays at VassarBushmills.com, through hundreds of pages about things cultural based on my experiences gained among the working classes of the 2nd and 3rd worlds. I’ve published a book on the Common Man.
We both know the fine art of teaching men and women how to teach others. We know what works. And we know what is relevant to the students that they may no longer know is relevant, especially about the shoulders they stand on.
Start-up financial needs are small and simple:
We’re both retired, fixed-income and currently about $450/month underwater.
A modest three-year budget would keep us solvent until we can touch all the bases. Our bona fides are outlined above (About Us), and I hope you will read some of the essays to get a “general theory of the men.”
1: Finish the non-profit process, approximately $1000.
2. Annual fees for our webmaster-designer. (We’re a little behind.) $500 p.a.
3. General overhead:
Maintain Office rental (suburban Richmond, Virginia): $350/month.
Internet/phone service: $300/month
4: Travel: as necessary. (Budget reserve.)
5. Office staff: 1-part time, $500.00
Off-Site Moderators for Veterans Tales. 3 for 3-time zones, $1000/month
Salaries for the two principles, $1500 /month total. ($750/ea)
Your organization is a Cause, and one we share, but one we believe we can help broaden, and take in other directions, offering veterans even greater mobility and identity as a class of next-generation leaders.
I’d like to see a veteran sitting in the White House again. It’s been a generation since we had one.
Mail Address: 10400 Chester Rd. Suite 209, Chester, VA, 23831
Ph: (804) 318-1750 (leave message)
Cell: (804) 971-6675
Twitter: @VeteransTales.org, @BushmillsVassar
Facebook: Allen Ness, www.facebook.com/fleshandbonez.ness