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Writing for Good: Email Our Military

Dear Reader,

As many of my family and close friends know, I have joined the ranks of the caring men and women who have military pen pals currently serving tours in Iraq. Through Twitter, I learned of Email Our Military (@MailOurMilitary), a volunteer service that grew out of a national security measure that banned all mail addressed to “Any Serviceman.” I took on two pen pals. We’ve been exchanging emails for about two or three weeks now.

For security reasons, I cannot go into details about these two service people or the content of our emails. But I do have a lot to say about writing and using our hobby for good things. If you are a writer, like me, why not take on a pen pal? You can send fiction, poetry, your shopping list, whatever. But you shouldn’t write ‘anything.’ Let me explain.

A controversy seems to be stirring on Twitter. One of my online contacts, a pretty staunch conservative as far as I can tell, appears to have publicly criticized the eMOM program. I didn’t bother to look up all the entries because I want to assume the best in everyone. The best I am assuming for the critic is this: Perhaps he is, at heart, worried that some Viet Nam throwback liberal will get an eMOM pal and spew vitriol about the war and politics. The concern is that any serviceman who gets such an email can be put in a diminished psychological state, and therefore be put in danger. The critic may also worry about how ‘regular’ people may not be trained to deal with the stress that comes along with being deployed in a war zone, and that well-meaning writers, hawk or dove, can say the wrong thing and amplify the stress.

I’m hoping the eMOM people will see this post and respond with their own views, because they are the experts. I’m not. I’m just a peppy person who thinks I could brighten someone’s day, even with my plain picked-fence descriptions of daily life in the ‘burbs. I am also, by chance, a person who has seen a lot of trauma in her life and feels strong enough to listen if my penpals need me to. Any person who has ever been a friend to anyone else in life can do that.

I’m a ‘bleeding heart liberal’ who writes poetry and hates sitting in church. I breast fed my children and carried them around in slings and am married to a person with a PhD in Philosophy. Those few facts should give you enough ammo to make up all the stereotypes you want about me and my political beliefs. It doesn’t matter. I have enough of a brain to realize that I am writing to people employed as soldiers in a war zone. I know that anything I write can be misconstrued and weigh heavily on the mind of a soldier who may go into combat. I also realize this isn’t rocket science, and American soldiers, although human, are highly trained professionals that are taught to block out stupidity when they are in the line of fire. They aren’t children, and neither are the eMOM civilian participants.

As a creative and professional person, I write. As an American, I see it as my duty to write to a soldier or two in Iraq. We need to wake up, people. We are one country. This war and those soldiers are our responsibility. Yes, “OUR,” which includes you. You sitting right there reading this. Write what you can. Your emails don’t have to be perfect. If you are too shy or afraid, recruit your best outgoing friends. Find someone who is sending care packages and donate something. Whatever. Those service people just want to be remembered and respected. That’s it! How EASY is that?

And you know what? You may take away more value than you can ever dream of. I get a little misty-eyed when I read how deeply grateful my penpals are just for a mere shout out. It’s a big huge piece of humble pie that ALL of us Americans, blue, red, or PURPLE, could eat. Twice.

Love,

-PurpleCar

A Proud eMailOurMilitary.com Member
http://www.emailourmilitary.com/

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Noah David Simon 17 April 2008, 10:08 pm

    Yes I do worry about someone bringing up complex “ISSUES” with someone in the military.
    it really is that simple.

  • PurpleCar 17 April 2008, 10:29 pm

    Yeah, man, I get you. But do you see what I mean about how you may be worried too much about it? We shouldn’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. In other words, emailing our troops – the troops who request emails only – is a good thing. They are asking for a shout out and eMOM finds strangers like me to give it to them. I know you don’t want to underestimate me, Noah, but I fear that you may have. And the Twitter folks may spew politics on both sides of the coin, but that doesn’t mean at all that they would be so cold-hearted or just plain stupid to spew it at a service person. And I’m sure you don’t underestimate the military’s professionalism – you are probably just thinking of how to make it better for them. Well, some of them want total strangers to write to them, like our war heroes from past wars were written to. If a stranger writes to them, it makes them feel like the whole country is writing to them. And we are. We love them. And I know you are included in the ‘we.’ 🙂

  • Trish 17 April 2008, 10:32 pm

    Great post! Noah claims he worries that someone will bring up complex issues with our troops but instead of saying just that he asked people to BOYCOTT our organization and belittled twitter users.

    I’d like to give twitter users a little more credit than that. In fact, twitter users were our #1 supporters during the 2007 holiday season. They made sure that our service men and women had plenty of holiday correspondence and care packages.

    It’s also important to note that eMail Our Military has a code of ethics in place and we take the time to explain what is and isn’t appropriate to discuss. Something that Noah would have known if he had taken the time to do his homework before launching into an attack.

    Service members don’t consider email, cards, letters and care packages a burden. In fact, they welcome them. They boost morale. But don’t take my word for it, take a look at the testimonials on our site or read the letters of thanks we get on a daily basis.

    It’s also important to mention that we never send unsolicited mail, all of the service members supported through eMail Our Military have sought us out and registered for our support and our volunteers are more than happy to send it!

  • MicheBel 17 April 2008, 10:36 pm

    I find it to be completely ludicrous that anyone could say ANYTHING to put someone so off their rocker that would in any way affect them MORE than being in a war zone already does. They are getting shot at, wounded, hurt, and we are offering them a little comfort, a little human contact. Who the heck CARES what we say in an email? It can only do them good. This Noah guy needs to get a life. Seriously.
    –Michelle

  • Jen @ JenuineJen 17 April 2008, 10:41 pm

    First I found your post through twitter and I found eMOM through twitter as well.

    I am planning to sign up for eMOM. I’m with you about what I plan to write. I have emailed one person I knew personally who was serving in Iraq. When he got home, he told me how much it meant to him. Every single holiday (Christmas, Fourth of July, etc.), I would send him a quick note just to let him know our family was thinking of him and his family that holiday. Other than the holidays, the other emails were mundane but I know they were also appreciated.

    I have not been following the conversation with Noah and think it is probably best to steer clear of it.

    Finally, I found it humorous that you said you are a bleeding heart liberal who among other things breast fed and carried your children in a sling. I am a staunch conservative and also breast fed and my husband and I carried our twins slings. One of the best things about America is that we can have the freedom to express our opinions. We can disagree politically. We also have the freedom to set our differences aside and look for common ground.

  • paisano 17 April 2008, 11:02 pm

    Excellent post! Summed it up perfectly! It’s all about positivity and goodness. How can anyone be against that?
    Sure, there’s always the slim chance someone might say the wrong thing but over all it will be a wonderful service and memorable experience for all involved!

    I support what eMom is doing fully. I think 99% of people do.

    Pai

  • Mike Chapman 17 April 2008, 11:02 pm

    I’ve been following eMail Our Military for a while and have recently been working with them on a project to personalize emails using http://www.qipit.com. My dad was stationed in southeast Asia twice during the Vietnam war and he very much enjoyed getting word from home. It was very meaningful to me to be able to communicate with him. All eMOM is doing is helping real people serving our country hear from real people back here using electronic communications. It’s not any more complicated than that. Hopefully with Mother’s Day coming up we can beef up the communications to the Mothers stationed overseas and help Mothers here communicate with their sons and daughters in the military.

  • Dayngr 17 April 2008, 11:04 pm

    Let’s call a spade a spade. He wanted to incite a riot and provoke people.

    Here’s what he actually said and it is all available for viewing in his archives:

    @treo700 it works don’t it? they promise virgins. people are willing to die for it. about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    retweet @eMom You’re confusing eMom (me) with eMoMs (eMail our Military). Two totally separate ideas/organizations. about 2 hours ago from web

    @eMom oh sorry about that. about 2 hours ago from web in reply to eMom

    @treo700 were you married when you were in Afghan? keep in mind I generally agree with you and don’t want to fight. about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    @blueteddy I don’t think the soldiers want my ass. about 2 hours ago from web in reply to BlueTeddy

    retweet: @BlueTeddy @noahdavidsimon, you’re right. fly your ass over there to get the boys laid. don’t forget the vasoline about 2 hours ago from web

    @treo700 why do you think the Muslims offer all those virgins in heaven? hmmm? we could learn a little about motivation from these people! about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    @treo700 whatever you say. I know that when I am surviving… the thing that gets my morale up is not a letter. about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    @HotFish oy… your one person. come on people! you know that I should not be writing the military about 2 hours ago from web in reply to HotFish

    @Ninety7 I am against art schools. so are most artists about 2 hours ago from web in reply to Ninety7

    @treo700 I’m sure there is a lot of good hearted agendas here. but this just sounds like a real bad idea. sorry I spoke out. about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    @treo700 I have sympathy for them. I want them to be happy. I could imagine what is going on in they’re minds. about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    @Ninety7 a lot of these boys are not even married yet. get em laid about 2 hours ago from web in reply to Ninety7

    @HotFish I think U all know N Ur heart that if U cared about a kid that might not see manana they should get laid not cookies and milk about 2 hours ago from web in reply to HotFish

    @Tiggr care enough about the soldiers 2leave them alone. listen 2 these vanity shattered twitter moms. ich! leave em alone girls about 2 hours ago from web in reply to Tiggr

    @Tiggr soldiers want to deal with me. I would not be an asset in a war. twitter idiots and they’re paradox arguments will drive u insane about 2 hours ago from web in reply to Tiggr

    @treo700 if I were in Iraq and I didn’t know if I was coming back or not. I would want some of the good old pootang,not twitteratti letters about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    @SCMProfessor send money if you want to support the troops. they need better combat tools. but don’t ask me that. ask
    @treo700 about 2 hours ago from web in reply to SCMProfessor

    @SCMProfessor send money if you want to support the troops. they need better combat tools. but don’t ask me that. ask @treo700 about 2 hours ago from web in reply to SCMProfessor

    @treo700 some of the twitter people like @emom and @MailOurMilitary think it is a good idea to let the people here talk to the boys about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    @BlueTeddy now your saying I was sexually abused? about 2 hours ago from web in reply to BlueTeddy

    @treo700 you know what the people around here are like. do you want them sending anti war shit to the troops? about 2 hours ago from web in reply to treo700

    @MikeChapman please write 2 Al Queda instead of the troops.Enemy needs 2B driven insane. send n email 2me and I will translate it 2 Arabic about 2 hours ago from web in reply to MikeChapman

    @MikeChapman for once Ur right. I am perpetuating a meme. that is a bad. hmmm about 2 hours ago from web in reply to MikeChapman

    @MailOurMilitary just leave kids alone.If U don’t understand how important getting laid s2n 18 year old then U shouldn’t be writing about 2 hours ago from web in reply to MailOurMilitary

    @sorenj I’m saying let the boys do they’re job. send money. not cookies and milk about 3 hours ago from web in reply to sorenj

    @BlueTeddy go breast feed Hamas about 3 hours ago from web in reply to BlueTeddy

    @MikeChapman hey do me a favor. write to Al Queda and drive them nuts about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MikeChapman

    @BlueTeddy my mom knows when not to leave me the fuck alone. and she did breast feed me about 3 hours ago from web in reply to BlueTeddy

    just the hostility of replies tells me that I am right. People who think Jimmy Carter should be talking 2Hamas shouldn’t b writing troops about 3 hours ago from web
    worst! the worst. pathetic… moronic… destructive. and arrogant! about 3 hours ago from web

    @MikeChapman yeah… bitch at me! that’s right! that way you don’t do it to the troops about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MikeChapman

    yeah… bitch at me! that’s right! that way you don’t do it to the troops about 3 hours ago from web

    listen to you. I can’t believe you think your opinions going to the troops are going to save they’re lives. you people are a bunch of fools about 3 hours ago from web

    @Dayngr your so witty. do you do that to people that have the stress of war on they’re back too? about 3 hours ago from web in reply to Dayngr

    @MailOurMilitary your killing me. and you expect some kid in Iraq to deal with these jerks. this is the worst idea EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MailOurMilitary

    @Dayngr what kind of people do U fools think Ur going 2meet on TWITTER and get2write a letter.U want to kill these soldiers? your doing it about 3 hours ago from web in reply to Dayngr

    @MailOurMilitary sending playboy bunnies is one thing. but you dumb idiot just wanna harass a man with a gun. about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MailOurMilitary

    @MailOurMilitary the military **IS** partison FOOL! They have a war to fight! they don’t need your head trip! about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MailOurMilitary

    @MailOurMilitary @SCMProfessor @Ninety7 @Dayngr realize vast majority of people here do not support the troops they don’t need Ur head trip! about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MailOurMilitary

    I’ve been on twitter long enough to realize that a vast majority of the people here do not support the troops they don’t need your head trip about 3 hours ago from web

    @Dayngr saying fight media war here by voting against Democrats, but let troops do they’re jobs. fighters don’t need ladies harassing them about 3 hours ago from web in reply to Dayngr

    @Ninety7 we need 2support the troops.this is not how you do it. support the troops by supporting they’re funding.don’t harass em with email about 3 hours ago from web in reply to Ninety7

    @MailOurMilitary last thing I would want is some YENTA that is going to vote for OBAMA talking to me right now about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MailOurMilitary

    @MailOurMilitary SAVE THE TROOPS! fight against MOMMY harrasment about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MailOurMilitary

    @MailOurMilitary supporting is one thing. bothering is another. show your support by letting them do they’re job n stop shit talking them about 3 hours ago from web in reply to MailOurMilitary

    @emom is an idiot about 3 hours ago from web in reply to eMom

    @BlueTeddy fight against email our troops. I’m starting a new group. It’s called GET OUR BOYZ LAID and no Cookies and Milk about 3 hours ago from web in reply to BlueTeddy

    @BlueTeddy those boys need 2B left alone by self righteous betty. Ur going 2give them a little leg. that’s 1 thing. this isn’t mommy time about 3 hours ago from web in reply to BlueTeddy

    fight the power of the twitter yentas. email our troops is an outrageous idea from people that don’t support the troops.this is a nightmare. about 3 hours ago from web

    protest against @emom and tell her that we don’t trust the people on twitter to deal with the boys in combat about 3 hours ago from web

    as if our boys don’t have the moral problem as is. Now we got YENTAS sending emails with BLUE STATE persuasions. THIS IS A FRONT about 3 hours ago from web

    @Dayngr a little worried about having these TWITTER people writing the troops. from talking around here I don’t think the troops need this about 3 hours ago from web in reply to Dayngr

  • PurpleCar 17 April 2008, 11:37 pm

    Noah’s first tweet, I’m guessing the bottom one, isn’t so offensive. I don’t know why it got so out of hand. But at the end of the day, it was just a mistake of communication. Let’s all put it to bed. I’m not asking Dayngr and Objections to kiss and make up, but we are REALLY all on the same side. Seriously.

    In the future, maybe we can remember to not tweet off the tips of our fingers but with the souls of our palms. I’m guilty of spewing sometimes myself, but this whole thing is a good reminder to always be genuine.

    Again, we are all agreed that this culture’s servicemen who want communication from strangers back home should get it. It’s a standard institution in our country’s cultural fabric, and at least a 3,000 year old practice.

  • Dayngr 17 April 2008, 11:47 pm

    I’m guessing it got out of hand because he was trying to incite a riot. If you look at all the tweets for @Dayngr and @MailOurMilitary you won’t find a single inflamatory remark. He was going off all by himself and sadly none of what he was saying about me or eMailOurMilitary was accurate or valid. It was like he was just making it up as he went along to stir the pot. Sad but there are people out there like that.

    If he knew anything about eMail Our Military he’d know that the people who register to support the troops through them understand that regardless of their personal views on politics the goal is to support the troops. That’s built into their Code of Ethics and folks who don’t follow the rules will no longer be part of the program.

    Pretty much everyone involved in support the military through eMoM are really proud to stand behind our service members and thank them for everything the do on a daily basis.

    Great post!

    PS. I breastfed my babies and carried them in slings too and at times have been called many names including a bleeding heart liberal. I guess all of that is subjective.

  • Michelle/chelpixie 18 April 2008, 12:45 am

    I could not finish reading those tweets. That’s how horrible I found them.

    Noah, don’t belittle what eMOM is doing in order to make a difference in the lives of people who ask for that help, for that connection. They’ve taken the responsibility to ensure that members of eMOM understand what is acceptable and what isn’t.

    This program has been in place for years and troops are still writing in to request a civilian pen pal. That is what’s important.

    That when a solider reaches out, there is someone there to take their hand, pat their back, or give them a smile.

  • This Military Mama 18 April 2008, 1:11 am

    I am a Military Wife, friend, daughter, grand daughter, neice, cousin. I am proud of my family that has served for this country and the family and friends that have supported him.

    I know from experience and stories that letters/e-mail from home make a huge difference for our Military men and women. Deployments are deployments and they suck all around. People don’t just miss their loved ones but the normal every day things like conversation that isn’t an order or a salute. They miss home.

    My husband in many of his e-mails asked me to make sure this person, that person, family, friends had his e-mail address. He wanted the communcation. He didn’t care what you wrote about, he just wanted the connection. Hell, I talked about cleaning the bathroom in one of my e-mails. He loved.

    My friends who have been to Iraq, are in Iraq, and have been there have all told me the same thing. The e-mails, letters, and packages get them through the deployments.

    War is hard mentality to keep up. It can destroy your spirit. Letters from home remind them that the situation there in is not normal and normal will come again.

    Sure, some of them don’t want letters. Those people don’t sign up for penpals! DUH! So don’t go bashing some one, a company, or a movement who is trying to support those who do want a connection from home. THAT IS BELITTLING THE SOLDIER THAT DID SIGN UP AND NO SOLDIER NEEDS THAT IN A TIME OF WAR!

  • Shirley (Proud Navy MA Wife) 18 April 2008, 1:11 am

    Trust me those that ask for the comminication from eMOM are doing it for a reason. My husband is a MA (Master-at-Arms/Police Officer) and hearing from people that appreciate the sacrifice that is made on behalf of the people of this country is something that he needs to hear once in a while.

    My husband over the years has had things thrown at him and been called names just as he was leaving the ship in his uniform. His morale was in the toilet. It hurts them that they put their life on the line just to be called names!

    My husband spent a year away from the family doing his job. He came home this time with a better attitude. Why? Because he heard from people that appreciate him and what he does. I know a number of guys that are deployed without a close family and very little support. The support that they get makes a very difficult situation a little easier.

    I have been a part of eMOM since it was just a small group back over 5 years ago. I support the hard work that they do and the smiles that they bring to those who want the support. It is not a huge thing but it makes a world of difference. Maybe because I am a Navy Wife I see things differently. My father retired from the Army and maybe I was just raised with a different mind set. I truly appreciate what the men and women in uniform are out there doing on the front lines do for us, just by doing their jobs. They are underpaid and under appreciated for what they have the guts to do.

    The next time you see a sailor/soldier/marine or airman in uniform stop and say thanks. It will make their day and maybe lift one from the depths of dispair. They may never show it other than the smile that they will wear. But people need to stop being so selfish. Our military wear the uniform so your do not have to. If you sleep well each night….Thank a member of the military. If it were not for the military of this country then people would not have the freedom of speech to spew the crap that comes from their mouths. The military are the ones protecting the freedoms that people are taking for granted. Think about it!

  • Noah David Simon 18 April 2008, 2:32 am

    your comments are so vain. I have time to deal with your coy Betty Bimbo psychosis.
    People on the front line don’t. If you are arguing with me here. then don’t write letters.
    They don’t need your sissy snide uptight queeny attitude. You say you have a code? I’m not so sure people will follow it. That’s like Rodney King saying people, “Let’s All Get Along” A lot of you seem more interested in protecting your precious twitter community then saving the lives of people defending your country. you should be ashamed.
    You want to write letters… to the military… your right they have done it before. My grandfather a World War II Vet used to tell jokes about the stupid letters he would get.
    Just don’t invite the idiots above to write.

    These kids deserve better then your harassment.

  • Noah David Simon 18 April 2008, 2:45 am

    the thing that proves my point is the way you attacked me. You think I was instigating this? If that is true then this is a little too easy to do. Not that I was instigating. I was really pissed when I looked at the website and it had nothing to do with anything beyond the absolute shock and personal horror of realizing that twitter people would be talking to our military. (but if I was instigating? ….YOU WOULD OF FAILED THE TEST and enough is said because you are not capable of dealing with pressured speech or any of the other traumas that these boys are dealing with) If you are giving me high blood pressure, imagine what you might do to a kid with a gun and possibly without a thorough education. Our troops are under pressure and deserve better then the people that are writing on this blog.

  • Dayngr 18 April 2008, 2:58 am

    What a tard

  • This Military Mama 18 April 2008, 4:39 am

    Before I say anything,

    Noah, are YOU in the military? Have YOU been in the military? Are YOU married or in a serious relationship with some one in the military? Are YOU a vet? Have YOU been to Iraq???

    How do you know people on the front line don’t want letters? How do you personally know?

  • This Military Mama 18 April 2008, 5:46 am

    And I’m talking about right now!

    How do you know people in this war don’t want letters?

  • Noah David Simon 18 April 2008, 6:17 am

    hey Cindy Sheehan… I mean “This Military Mama”

    I’m dealing with you. That takes a talent. Respect what I offer in the same way that your should be respecting the troops. Brown shirts like you think the war is only dudes holding a gun. I live right near West Point and I know plenty of people fighting, but it doesn’t take geography or an occupation to put two and two together and realize that the community of twitter is very against the war and is not mature in it’s ideas related to it. I hear the personal stories on the train going up the Hudson. I hear about missiles coming out of Iran and kids not being able to write about what they saw with they’re very own eyes because our country doesn’t want to admit we are already at war with Iran. You are attacking me on a personal level because you know I am hitting a relevant point and it hurts the vanity of you and your friends. SHAME ON YOU FOR BEING SO SELFISH! You are trying to reflect by pointing out that I am not a soldier? Do you honestly believe the opinions of someone dodging bullets are going to be able to argue with you? Ah.. but I guess you do… that is why you are writing them isn’t it? If there is one thing we should of learned from Vietnam… it isn’t “diplomacy” that wins the fight, but rather the public relations and mind set of the people. Once the mind of the people is determined, then we can take part in diplomacy. But with the TWITTER society manipulating public opinion like it does, negotiations are going to look like Jimmy Carter’s shit smile with Hamas. I am in communications and I am trying to protect the dudes that do not have the extensive background I have. I honor them and respect them, but I am not the one holding a gun. Only tyrannical idiots with an agenda think the way you do “Military Mama”. In the same respect. I do not think I would be best at holding a gun, I also believe that dealing with hard nose jerks like you takes a specialist. I respect the soldiers too much to go out there with them. I would gladly give my life, but if a person with my background disagreed with a higher up… that would be a very bad thing. America doesn’t need a person like me second guessing the troops, but you guys need to get your shit straight if you are so arrogant to go and start communicating with soldiers without a second opinion on what would be prudent in filtering out bad twitter apples. The fact that you are attacking me with the venom that you are just proves your ill will. You act like this with a soldier and he’s liable to have a problem. You are not interested in helping the troops “Military Mama”. You are interested in you’re own vanity. What I bring to this is valid criticism of a program that could hurt our country.

  • Jenn - Maryland 18 April 2008, 8:33 am

    I have been supporting our troops for half of my life. One of my closest friends is a Marine that I met during the first Gulf War 17 years ago and with whom I communicate daily. He was my last “any service member” snail mail.

    eMOM has a code of ethics. We members have our own personal ethics and we are not out to jeopardize our country or the safety of our service members. As a Navy brat I was taught “loose lips sink ships” and eMOM holds to that standard. As an Army wife and an FRG Lead Volunteer I have received my share of OpSec briefings. We are not randomly contacting service members, they have asked for our support.

    Many of us have spent 100’s of hours writing letters and emails and showing up at airport homecomings and standing roadsides as funeral processions go by… we don’t do this for vanity or recognition as I’m the first one to say, I’ve been to events where there is not a soul in the crowd who knows me….we do this because we’re patriots who love our country and those who serve it.

    PROUD eMail our Military member!

  • Dayngr 18 April 2008, 9:06 am

    Noah said …it doesn’t take geography or an occupation to put two and two together and realize that the community of twitter is very against the war and is not mature in it’s ideas related to it…

    Noah said …TWITTER society manipulating public opinion like it does, negotiations are going to look like Jimmy Carter’s shit smile with Hamas.

    Noah, maybe that’s your twitter stream but that certainly isn’t mine. Nonetheless, it’s not about whether people are for or against the war. It’s about supporting our troops through correspondence.


    PROUD eMail our Military member!

  • Mike Chapman 18 April 2008, 9:13 am

    It is great to read the passion of the people who support eMail Our Military. The person who is being objectionable is coming from an uninformed point of view about what eMOM does and is being irrational in his arguments. What he is confused about mainly is that people with different points of view, on many issues, could actually agree the following: when American troops are away from home and potentially in harms way we can all tell them that we miss them, we are praying for and thinking about them, we thank them for their service to our country, and we wish them a safe and speedy return home to the family and friends. This isn’t political, this is who we are. First, we are Americans! Let’s do all we can to communicate with the very real people who make up our military services.

  • thaumata 18 April 2008, 10:00 am

    Just wanted to chime in and say that while I am sure it exists, I couldn’t find this code of ethics on the eMom site and I would have been interested to read what it said before signing up. You might want to make that available to unregistered viewers so they can see what they are agreeing to before joining. (And if it IS there, make the link more visible.)

    I know it seems silly because it’s just two bucks and a stamp, but for some people even that is a hardship.

  • Tony 18 April 2008, 10:08 am

    I have read the entire thread. And here is what I would like to add:

    Only in America can we reveal our passions, our disagreements, our political opinions in an open forum. Regardless of your views, we should be glad that our freedoms to speak our mind are being protected by those who, I consider, much more brave, more heroic, and more of a patriot than I. I love my country. I would gladly die to protect your freedoms and beliefs even if they are not the same ones I share. Why? Because we are Americans first and foremost.

    I understand both points of view and while I tend to lean more towards eMOM, I fully respect Noah’s view. Because he is an American. Because he CAN state his opinion. Because he has the freedom to do so.

    Likewise, I feel the need to defend the community of Twitter. I have found an amazing set of new friends on Twitter. I have seen the GOOD that comes from Twitter. I have had differences of opinions with people on Twitter from a political perspective but what I found is that, in the end, we still respect one another. We acknowledge our differences and move on.

    I ask everyone involved in this thread: you may disagree with one another, but no matter what, please respect the differences of opinions and be glad that you are in a place where we can engage each other in a forum like this.

    Finally, we are Americans. Let us show the world that no matter how we may feel about the war, we respect and admire our soldiers who are fighting. I think in the end, that is what matters. That we defend other Americans regardless of our views. Thank you.

  • Dayngr 18 April 2008, 10:16 am

    Wonderful, thoughtful replies!

  • Paula Hawk aka @Hawksdomain 18 April 2008, 10:57 am

    I was asked to come and post some thoughts here. PurpleCar, I hope I do not say anything that will offend you, as I am very thankful that you brought this entire subject to light.

    For anyone to group the users of Twitter into an exclusive group of anything other than technology users is simply absurd. Users of Twitter come from all over the world, in fact, I would guess that those of us here in the US are a minority in the Twitterverse as a whole.

    For any American to say that we, as a country, are against the TROOPS, cannot be an American. For YEARS I have spread across the internet that we are not in the 1970s and that this is not Vietnam. I am so far against this war that it isn’t even funny. I despise the current president of the United States and blame him and his staff for the alleged WMDs that sent us into Iraq. There is not one single soldier I do not support. I support and love the soldiers from each and every war this country has ever been in.

    Those accused and convicted of crimes RE Abu Graib (I know I spelled that wrong), love ’em and support ’em. The president that will not reject the use of waterboarding? Despise him.

    Some of the soldiers, including one I am related to, feel that the war is good and justified. They say that the people in Iraq are genuinely happy that we are there. Some of the soldiers, such as those I see on the news and other places, feel that being in Iraq is wrong, just as I do. Regardless of the position of these men and women, fighting the war is their job, just like my job is supporting an office to ensure it runs smoothly. We don’t always like our jobs, but we do them. People do not hate us because we do our jobs – Let me rephrase that – people worth listening to do not hate us because of our jobs.

    Americans support their soldiers, because without them there would be no America. Many of us who are so involved in the technology world and active on Twitter were too young to be involved with Vietnam. We heard the stories of how American soldiers were spit upon and degraded horribly. We are not the generations responsible for such actions.

    As I sit here and wonder if there is anything further I should say on this subject, I come to realize that it is not just Generation X and Generation Y that are unconditionally supporting our troops and have ignored the craziness of what was the Vietnam war…. Gee, don’t we have a Vietnam Vet running for President?

    Since the late 1980s, I have not met one person in this country who did not support our troops. I was also greatly against Desert Storm, for reasons that are not important here, but I always, ALWAYS supported our troops.

  • Tony 18 April 2008, 11:03 am

    Paula,

    While I disagree with some of what you say, I respect your views. I do agree with it not being a GenX or GenY stance. However, I believe that these Generations are more active and responsive than previous generations if not only due to the technology available to us versus in the past.

    Thank you for sharing your views. Have a great day!

  • thaumata 18 April 2008, 11:13 am

    Well, I’m only 28 but it seems to me we were years into vietnam before you could protest without fear of being beaten to a bloody pulp…. and we had millions of people protesting THIS war before it even began. I’d say that’s much more active and responsive, for whatever reason. Technology is obviously a leading factor here. Eleven minutes after the earthquake at my home today, Google had logged the AP report. We’ve come a long way.

    That being said, though, despite the fact that I can’t name a single person I personally know who supports the idea of our nation at war, I also don’t know a single person who has anything but gratitude and compassion for the people who are over there fighting it. I mean that sincerely.

    Also, after reading this story, I went hunting for other sites that connect civilians and soldiers via email, and HOLY COW, they are all so shady. Most of them have websites the 1980s would kill for, require money to join or seem to have an agenda that’s far beyond cheering up someone far from home and making their days better, which is really all any of these groups should be doing, along with anyone writing through them. Anyone doing this job well deserves applause, because it would seem that most people are not.

  • Noah David Simon 18 April 2008, 11:37 am

    what is this about the code not being apparent?
    PATHETIC!

    you shouldn’t harass the soldiers. you shouldn’t harass me and it would seem you spend more time twitter bitching then actually insuring the soldiers don’t get flamed like I am getting. you are proving exactly what I am saying.
    Yes this is America… feel free to continue being an idiot on this thread.
    LEAVE THE SOLDIERS OUT OF THIS!

  • Dan Mosqueda 18 April 2008, 1:34 pm

    I am a reservist in the Air Force. When I was deployed 2 years ago to Kuwait and Iraq, I remember receiving mail from somebody I didn’t know. In fact, I received a few things in the mail. It literally brought tears to my eyes because it said to me that someone back home was thinking about me. I saved the items and have them to this day.

    I would say that if you’re writing to a servicemember, keep it cheery and supportive. And if you send them something in the summer, make sure it’s not meltable because it’s hot over there!

  • Noah David Simon 18 April 2008, 1:51 pm

    also a further comment about the poor design of eMOM
    please look at the illustration work of Jason Brooks and give him a little credit for his design style. Few realize that he invented this digital illustration style stolen by so many girly ventures. The integrity of your site is so lacking in so many ways other then moral issues. The design of this thing is pathetic.

  • Noah David Simon 18 April 2008, 1:56 pm

    here is the master Jason Brook’s work.
    please give credit to artists.

    soldiers are important, but the integrity of the design and your references to it’s history are important too

    http://www.jason-brooks.com/portfolio/

    this guy is actually an interior decorator, but every one in advertising lifted this poor guys style… including Mail our Military

  • Troy 18 April 2008, 5:58 pm

    I want to put an end to this petty bickering…

    Let me start by saying I am a 23 year old combat medic, in iraq. I have requested to get emails from emom and as have others over here with me. The simple thing is that mail electronic or not is a great damn morale booster. I miss home and have been stuck in this shit hole for the past 6 months and i have about 9 left to go. we get mail all the time from random people accross the U.S. and it makes us happy to see that we are appreciated and not forgotten. trust me its easy to think that you are forgotten. i am not going to say if i believe in the war or not or what side of the politcal fence i stand in. i will say this, TROOPS LOVE MAIL! i am a line medic. i am right there on the front lines kicking in doors and my guys all call me doc. i have seen the worst that humanity has to offer but i offer the best humanity has to give. its a hard job and i deal with more human suffering than i care to think about, and nothing shines through the thick, darkness like a simple letter or email. i dont care what its about. i could use the break in the monotiny of this hell hole. but once again it is america and what i fight for to keep free so enjoy your opinions. god bless, and sorry for the gramatically incorrect rant.

  • PurpleCar 18 April 2008, 6:02 pm

    And that, my friends, is the last word on that!

  • Tony 18 April 2008, 6:03 pm

    Troy

    Be safe bro! Thank YOU and all the rest of the troops for doing what you do. I am damn proud of all you guys!

    Again, stay safe and get home soon!

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