by Steve Young
Author Dalton Trumbo once wrote of a horribly-wounded veteran in his 1939 book “Johnnie Got His Gun.” The story spoke of a WWI infantryman whose bomb-inflicted injury left him a deaf and blind quadruple-amputee who with his face blown off – no eyes, no ears, no mouth – had no seeming manner of communication.
He spent years of grueling despair, confined to a bed, where he struggled to develop a body-vibration communication with his nurse. He was finally able to convey the message expressing a reason to live. He wished to be taken from town to town, showing himself to the American public in effect, the true cost of war. That it is not enough to be willing to die for your country. That if you choose to enter a war, you must be willing to become a living, thinking, vegetable for your country.
When the military and governmental leaders were told of Johnny’s wish, they turned it down….