Does a Vietnam Veteran have First Amendment Rights?

By | July 26, 2023

[July 26, 2023]  I must honestly say I may have never read the Constitution of the United States. If I did read it, I really don’t remember when or where.  I do recall all during my lifetime.  I heard people on TV, people on talk radio read about the Constitution in newspapers.  I always heard about our Supreme Court debating issues on one’s constitutional rights.

What I can say is that a lot of people that try and interpret the First and Second Amendments seem to have a lot to say about it.  See, when a lot of people were studying the Constitution, a lot of our Vietnam Veterans went off to war to fight for it.  We were just young teenagers.  I only wish our great writers of the United States started off this Sacred document with the words please use common sense when interpreting, and All picked up arms to defend her.

This brings me to an important part of this letter that I am trying to bring out.  What does and what doesn’t the Constitution cover?  My first example is when we returned home from fighting in Vietnam for a continuation of our freedom in this country, were the protesters covered under the Constitution when they spit on us and called us baby killers.  Where employers covered under the Constitution when they denied us employment.  There were times when employers denied jobs to returning Vietnam Veterans that had contracts and were making goods to be sent to Vietnam for the war efforts.

Was the Regional offices and the Veterans Affairs Medical Centers covered under the Constitution when for so many years, they denied Veterans for Benefits Like health care and Pensions?  Where does it say in the Constitution our Government is allowed to spray MILLIONS of GALLONS of Dioxide on us.  I am sure if President Thomas Jefferson thought about putting using Chemical warfare during war in the Constitution, I am sure he would have put in the Constitution make sure you give our brave veterans Gas Masks.  Same with Burn Pits in Iraq and Afghanistan.  But by me not reading and studying the Constitution, I must not have noticed the section under chemical use on our Military.

What has me confused is while the Break in of our Capital or the Visit or what ever you want to call it is why did Our Congress and our Senate have gas masks in their desk to put on while the disturbance was going on?  Did our Constitution say protect our people in our capital, but the hell with our Veterans?  We lost 59,000 soldiers, civilian workers and a lot of great people like Our Devoted Vietnam Veteran Donut Dollies.  We didn’t even give our Brave Nurses and our Brave Donut Dollies protection from these chemicals.  Where were our Constitutional rights?  It looks more and more every day I live that we who were sent off to war didn’t matter if we lived, died or came home crippled mentally or physically.  What difference did it make if we lost 200 or 300 teenagers a day?  We can just draft more coming out of our high schools.  Vietnam was like a teenage assembly line of going off to war while the rich and politicians stayed home and profited.

Did we as Vietnam Veterans have a constitutional right to be protected and listened to by our Constitution?  By the way, did Jane Fonda fall under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution when she traveled to Communist North Vietnam, put on the Helmet of our enemy, sit on an enemy weapon that shot down and killed our Brave American pilots?  Was Miss Fonda covered under our Constitution when she gave 8 Propaganda broadcasts from North Vietnam  calling our United States Soldiers the enemy?  Was MISS Fonda covered by the free speech of our Constitution?

And if so, why didn’t the VA, Government, Congress, Senate and Society listen to us?  Our voices took years, and I mean years of fighting for them to be heard.  Why did Miss Fonda go free, and a lot of our hero Vietnam Veterans have to live with the denial and name-calling?  We came home not to parades, or thanks or pats on the back, but to be labeled as crazy, suicidal and homeless and NO, NO, NO from the VA.

Are Vietnam Veterans’ Constitutional rights violated by making them wait 5,10,15,,20, or over 50 years for benefits?  If our Constitution is here to protect our citizens, then why were we denied benefits 50 years ago and today the VA is now granting them?  Did someone change the Constitution and you forgot to tell the very people that gave our country peace from 1959 till 1975?

Who were these Teenage Vietnam Veterans from all schools, all races, all religions, and mostly all Middle-Class Families and poor Families?  I must also mention that we emptied our jails and prisons to help with the hundreds of thousands of teenagers that went to fight and die for your Constitution.

  1. A teenager that quit his paper route to go to war
  2. A teenager that jumped off his bike and ran to jump on an airplane or boat to Vietnam
  3. A teenager who put his stickball bat in the corner of his bedroom and in the morning found a M-16 replacing it
  4. A teenager who went to bed one night and put his Chuck Taylor sneaks under his bed and in the morning found a pair of combat boots replacing them
  5. A teenager that was taught in school and at home to love, respect, obey, and help our neighbors’ is now told to go and destroy and kill that neighbor
  6. A teenager who kissed and hugged his Mom and Dad when he left home on his way to Vietnam now finds himself kissing and hugging the ground of Vietnam in a dry rice patty with bullets flying over his head to stay alive.
  7. A teenager that traded in his soda pop and hoagies for left over WW11 and Korean C ratios and canteens of hot muddy water
  8. A teenager who put his baseball glove and ball on his kitchen table and the next day found the ball replaced with a hand grenade to use in Vietnam
  9. A teenager who left his home clean of heart, soul and body only to come home from Vietnam mentally and physically broken, disrespected, and forgotten.
  10. A teenager still this day has to fight for respect, dignity and for people to listen. And that means the VA picking up phones and listening to our Veterans when they call.
  11. A Veteran that was given a sleeping bag over 50 years ago on their first day in the Military and is still being given a sleeping bag because they are part of the 50,000 homeless on the streets of a land they helped make free called The United States of America.

We, on the Welcome Home Show, will continue to fight for our Veterans and Families that cannot fight for themselves.  NO ONE, AND I MEAN NO ONE, WILL EVER TAKE MY FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS AWAY, especially when it comes to my Brother and Sister Veterans.




Below is a link to the “Welcome Home” Veterans radio show every Saturday from 2 to 4 PM


Please read my books:

  1. “55 Rules for a Good Life,” on Amazon (link here).
  2. “Our Longest Year in Iraq,” on Amazon (link here).

31 thoughts on “Does a Vietnam Veteran have First Amendment Rights?

  1. Pooch T.

    Wow, thank you Gen. Satterfield for giving us Joe Griffies.

  2. Douglas R. Satterfield

    Joe, you have done it again and made it plain that our Veterans are not being treated properly. As a nation, we made a promise to them. And, we have failed to deliver.

    1. Ron C.

      Sir, you are spot on with those comments. And, yes, thank you Joe G. for your article.

  3. Eddie Gilliam

    Excellent job by guest Joe Griffies. It’s so sad how my veterans who was drafted out of high school to fight for our country were and still being unfairly being treated by the veterans affairs office. Shame,Shame.
    Let’s use our voice to let veterans affairs office know we care for the veterans and homeless veterans. There is strength in unity.

  4. Eduardo Sanchez

    Excellent guest post today, Gen. Satterfield. I read it three times and put a copy on my refrigerator as a reminder of how badly our veterans are being treated today.

    1. Stacey Borden

      My dad was a vet and died of agent orange, so the va says. He got zero help. He passed away late last year.

    2. Winston

      Yep. Eduardo. Remember what is written here today. Remember that our country is on a downward spiral. Remember why, when idiots are put in charge, nothing good will come of it.

  5. USA Patriot II

    Comments on Jane Fonda, US traitor, are always appreciated. She is a strong-willed Democrat. Says a lot about the Democrat Party to allow her in it. Well, they allow trans-women strippers at the White House to expose themselves, so there should be no surprise that they also love Jane Fonda.

  6. Grover in the Grove

    #11. A Veteran that was given a sleeping bag over 50 years ago on their first day in the Military and is still being given a sleeping bag because they are part of the 50,000 homeless on the streets of a land they helped make free called The United States of America.
    OUCH, Mr. Griffies sure knows how to hit a homerun.

  7. Max Foster

    Hey, folks, remember this blog post by Gen. S?
    VA goes Woke as it removes Lincoln’s Quote
    [March 21, 2023] In a Washington D.C. Friday news dump, the Veterans Administration announced the removal of their 64-year-old motto, a quote by President Abraham Lincoln. Ostensibly, the quote is so offensive that the VA could no longer tolerate the intolerance. Let’s be honest; the VA has officially gone full Woke. Here is the quote the VA leadership removed: “To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan.” – President Abraham Lincoln

      1. Lady Hawk

        You got that right, Army Captain. And I’m going to write another letter to my Congressman here in Ohio to give him a piece of my mind. No pussy footing around like that dementia idiot in the White House who allows our most sacred organizations to fall apart.

        1. ZB Two Two

          All Bite-Me’s people are woke woke woke, including our most senior generals and admirals. And shameful as well. How can it be that the little guys like me can see it yet our senior leaders cannot see it?

  8. American Girl

    Joe, you sure have a way with words. Sir, you are the BEST!

    1. Marx and Groucho

      Yep, nailed it. Thanks to Gen. Satterfield for getting this article out for us to read.

  9. Doc Blackshear

    The Honorable Denis Richard McDonough was nominated by President Biden to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs. Mr. McDonough’s nomination was confirmed by the United States Senate on February 8th, 2021, and he was sworn in the following day as the 11th Secretary of Veterans Affairs. SHAMEFUL. The man is not a vet, has no understanding of vet issues, cannot even define a vet and is leading a bureaucracy that even a stupid dog can see is all f’ed up.

      1. Liz at Home

        Yep, I laughed because I have been thnking the same thing for at least two years now.

      2. Willie Strumburger

        Good one, Eric. Yeah, Doc. This is a real problem that our vets are taking the brunt of the failure of the Veterans Administration. Gen. Satterfield has already pointed out some of the failures.

  10. Janice Williamson

    Mr. Griffies, you have made my day. ❤ My father is a Vietnam Vet and he was mistreated by the many whackos that today call themselves Democrats and they have political sway over most of the country and are not content to allow our military to be strong. Thank you for your beautiful article. And thanks to Gen. Satterfield for allowing us to share it.

    1. Rev. Michael Cain

      Janice, my father is also a Vietnam Vet, my uncle, and my brother-in-law are also vets. Time to get the word out that the Veterans Administration has failed in their duties to our most vulnerable population, combat vets. 🙏🙏🙏🙏🙏

      1. Tom Bushmaster

        The VA has failed us. Time to get it back on track. When the president appoints a non-Veterans to lead the organization of vets, then both the president and that chosen ‘leader’ have made a fatal mistake.


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