There will be no tanks in Donald Trump’s ego boosting, authoritarian, third world state type parade. Their tracks will tear up the parade route, and the repairs to the streets will add to the cost the taxpayers are already having to pay for the parade itself, the extra security, transporting the participants to DC, and the post parade clean up.
But there will be period uniforms, wheeled vehicles, and a grand finale of military war planes flying over the Capitol and Mr. Trump.
According to a Pentagon memo, the parade, which will be integrated into DC’s Veterans Day parade, will focus on the contributions of US veterans from the Revolutionary War to today.
It will have “an emphasis on the price of freedom.”
The Joint Staff will be responsible for planning the parade with the Northern Command, the overseer of US troops in North America, being responsible for executing it
So that all eyes will be on him and he can look good while basking in the light of what those who did not suffer bone spurs earned, Trump will stand in the reviewing area surrounded by veterans and Medal of Honor recipients receiving the salutes of the marchers who are required to give them.
When he announced the parade earlier this year, Trump had said, with a touch of prescience as he spoke for others without first speaking with them,
“We’ll see if we can do it at a reasonable cost, and if we can’t, we won’t do it. But the generals would love to do it, I can tell you, and so would I. I think it’s great for our country in terms of being a cheerleader and the spirit.”
Mick Mulvaney, White House budget director, estimated that Trump’s parade would cost from $10 million to as much as $30 million depending on the length, but the Pentagon memo was silent about cost.
There were 40,056 homeless veterans in the United States in 2017, which was a 1.5% increase from the 39,471 homeless veterans in 2016—the first such increase in seven years.
In 2015, the last year the data was collected, those who feed the hungry estimated that the average cost-per-meal in the U.S. was $2.94. The $10 million spent on a military parade could provide all 40,056 homeless veterans three meals a day for 14.8 days if the cost per meal was the highest in the figures averaged, or three meals a day for nearly a month, 28.3 days at the average cost.
Homeless veterans are not as photogenic as those who will be standing with the president at the certainly to be broadcast parade, and, if he ever actually sat down with the homeless veterans to eat the meal with them that they eat, it would not be so glamorous a thing for him.
Perhaps, to show they too, although rendered invisible, helped pay “the price of freedom”, homeless veterans should form a contingent in the parade and march as they are and reveal the shame this parade and the real reasons for it are.
You can be assured that if the homeless veterans attempt to march as we see them daily on the street, they will be turned away.