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Willard homecoming party for migrant workers is OK; just don't rub our faces in all of this

• Apr 17, 2017 at 3:30 PM

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following letter to the editor was submitted by Lawrence Cutting of New London.

As a Vietnam veteran, I would like to weigh in on the "welcome back to Willard" controversy.

Since slavery is no longer permitted in this country, I must assume the migrant workers come here to work of their own free will. I imagine they are trying to improve they and their families standard of living. During the Vietnam war there was a draft — most of those veterans were draftees. They had no choice and it certainly did not improve our or our families standard of living. To compare picking crops in the hot sun in dirt with slogging knee deep through rice paddies wearing full battle gear when the temperature and humidity is 95 or above is ludicrous. Then, us lucky ones came home.

The military brought us to Ft. Lewis in Washington state. After that we were on our own. Many of us were from east of the Mississippi river and had been away from home a year or more so we wanted the quickest way to get home, which was commercial air. Very few of us were millionaires so we needed to use the airlines offer of two thirds regular fair for military members. To do so we had to wear our uniform which put us in the sights of every “smart ass college yuppie” on the west coast. We were spit on and called all sorts of foul names. THAT was our welcome back. So, have your welcome back for those migrant workers, just keep it low key. Don’t rub our faces in it.

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