Currently this video has over two and a half million hits. If this is not proof of the emotional power that a veteran in support of the Occupation can garner I don’t know what is. Most of us don’t claim to be any more honorable than anyone else. It is other people’s expectation of our honor that makes us go above and beyond. As a veteran you have the responsibility to live up to other people’s expectations for you. Much of the conversation going on here went on during the Great Depression. A statement that the head of the VA made when the criteria for PTSD were expanded hit a cord with me. “Yes people are going to take advantage. People always take advantage. But don’t let that obscure the good it will do.” This resonates with me as a statement that can be applied to all social welfare. The reason social security and other measures were enacted was because nobody wants the elderly on their conscience, or the sick or the disenfranchised. Imagine when things get worse (and they will before they get better). Having to walk around the streets seeing people all hitting rock bottom at the same time. Imagine how that will make you feel.
Karol Olesiak is a poet, writer, and activist. He is a graduate of Eugene Lang Liberal Arts College at The New School and an MFA student at The University of San Francisco. As a Navy sailor, he commissioned the USS Ronald Reagan, navigated the straits of Magellan, and served in the Persian Gulf. In 2011 Karol headlined The Bowery Poetry Club in New York. That same year he became a staunch supporter of The Occupy Wall Street Movement and became entrenched in the Occupy network of affinity groups. Karol was one of the founders of www.soldiersforthecause.org. He became an antiwar activist in 2010 and has written many political essays. He has been translated into Spanish. Karol's poetry has been incorporated into cinematography and sound art.