I Propose Americans Wear Gas Pumps on Veteran’s Day

Poppy, Northern New Mexico

In the Commonwealth of Nations, the people get to wear poppies on Remembrance Day. I’m jealous. Poppies are beautiful.

In the United States, we get military glorification and propaganda. I don’t know how many marches and war stories we’ve endured over the years. This is not fair.

I think Americans need their own symbolic lapel pin for Veteran’s Day. I propose it be a gas pump.

The poppy pin idea came from a truly great poem, “In Flanders Fields,” by John McCrae. The story goes that he wrote it in a moment of inspiration while looking at poppies on a World War I battlefield. He crumpled it up and threw it in the trash, I believe in my heart because he probably thought people would understand that it’s subversive (if so, he overestimated people). Anyway, his fellow soldiers rescued it from the trash. It became a hit, and people bought poppies with proceeds going to help veterans and their families.

I have nothing against veterans. It’s not usually their fault they wound up in the military. We have recruiters in our high schools, lying to the kids. I used to be a schoolteacher. I know how this works.

The veterans helped the government fight their oil wars, and the government should take good care of them. That’s that.

The problem is the government isn’t doing that. So I think we should sell gas pump pins to help support them.

I got the gas pump idea from the poppy pins. I snicker a bit when I see them pass through my Twitter feed on November 11. Do they even realize what they’re wearing? I mean, opiates are made from poppies.

McCrae knew that because he was a doctor. On the battlefield, opiates are mercy.

Except when the battlefield is your bathroom, where your niece is shooting up to get through the Thanksgiving stress of dealing with horrifically judgmental people who are supposed to love her.

If you don’t know by now that your government is bringing in the drugs that are killing people, you need to learn your history. I don’t blame you — like I said, I was a schoolteacher and I know how this works. Your history books are full of truth omissions and outright lies.

Right now we’re having an “opioid crisis” in the US. This is the result of a convergence of happenings, like the “crack epidemic” of the 1980s. First, in the 1990s, the pharmaceutical companies started using their pushers, I mean pharma salespeople, to peddle long-lasting opiate drugs to clinics for the relief of chronic pain. In the early 2000s, a “hillbilly heroin” epidemic was recognized. Surprise, surprise.

Then we got hit with wave upon wave of poppyganda. The result was that, fed also by almost everyone’s experiences either firsthand or secondhand with addiction, the people of the United States demanded the prohibition of painkillers, and the government acquiesced. How thoughtful of them. It makes post-surgery a whole lot of fun. Thanks, guys!

While people with legitimate chronic pain from diseases I wouldn’t wish upon my worst enemy are being denied relief, which is a humanitarian crime according to the UN, overdoses are skyrocketing.

Now, why would that be happening?

Why, it’s simple economics, dear reader. Supply and demand.

Opium has been used as a weapon of warfare for a long time. McCrae would have known it, and that’s why I think the poem is subversive.

Wars are about money, not defeating the bad guys. I think McCrae knew this, too. Also subversive.

So while Commonwealth Nations wear their ironic lapel pins, I think we should, too. They’ve got the drug trade covered, so we need to do our part and take on the oil trade. It’s only fair.

How many countries have we destroyed for oil? Lives ruined or lost here and abroad? I don’t know, but they should be remembered.

I’ve made a handy-dandy template for your pins:

Simply print them, cut them out, stick pins through them, and maybe add yellow ribbons if you’re feeling creative. Go to your local Veteran’s Day parade and set up a booth with a sign that says, “Buy a pin. All proceeds go to veterans!”

Then go down to your nearby VFW and pass out the money, like a good patriot.