Legion Scotland Today

My good friend and army buddie sent me the latest Legion magazine from Scotland. Its a very interesting read from page one to the end. There no cheap advertisements trying to sell me poppy embossed tat, but plenty of articles on fund raising through the Poppy campaigns. There is also a very interesting story about one Jack Ransom, a World War two veteran held in a Japanese POW . He was captured in 1942 and was part of the slave workers on the Thailand-Burma Railway, the death Railway. He survived and was returned in England in August 1945, he weighted 6 stone. Today this 97 year old veteran still has a warm and friendly smile that gives nothing away about his war time ordeals.. In the photo you can see he wears his WW2 medals on the left and two WW1 medals on his right. The ww1 medals belonged to his uncle, his fathers brother who was killed in the first battle of Amiens, he was aged 19.

I would love to hear from someone at Dominion Command explain why, if Jack lived in Canada, he would be arrested under Canadian law for diluting and wearing his uncles medals and repeatedly flaunting the law . We can be sure we will not hear from Dominion or any other member who supports this inane law. Of course we should be understanding Dominion Command are probably all busy selling their latest Poppy Bird Feeders.

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Latest Revue of Chapter XXl Armageddon.

My most recent reading: CHAPTER XXI ARMAGEDDON by Frederick Rodgers of PEI (Prince Edward Island) CANADA

By Francis Gallant

My first knowledge of humankind was learning about the creation of our first parents. After graduating from this fictitious story onto evolution knowledge I, more-or-less, discounted a lot of fairy tale nonsense and came round to the suspicion of brainwashing. From a period much later on I have appreciated having had the opportunity to have been able to step back and take on an objective point of view absent of religious emotion.

In this fiction it was great fun to accompany the characters to the past and then be brought to the future. It was difficult to close the book after I started but one interruption was to force myself to get to the kitchen to prepare dinner.

I don’t think it had all to do with my familiarity with Hunter River, PEI but I did feel very close to home in this novel. And then came the surprise ending of having escaped so far into the future only to be brought back to the beginning once again. Not the beginning of the book but the beginning of humankind.

Thanks Francis I glad you enjoyed the story and I appreciate your kind words regarding my book

The Cover Reads

Adam opens the Holy Bible to the book of Revelations chapter 21. The year is 4013. You might ask how he came to end up two thousand years in the future. This is an exciting story that follows a nuclear submarine across the North Atlantic. A disused Second World War army research base situated in the highlands of Scotland. An ultra secret meeting held deep in the bowels of the Vatican. It is a fast pace and exciting story that takes the reader on a long and mysterious journey. Follow the strange events that lead to the disappearance of an empty Johnny Walker  whisky bottle, and the suspicion of a spy in the inner circle. Meet Angus the fiery old Scottish preacher who likes a wee dram and is at the centre of this fantastic mission .Hold your breath as a Roman Army advance on our two heros as they attempt to escape.

However if you decide to read the book first find a comfortable chair and a glass of single malt. Then you will be ready.

God Bless and keep reading

 

Posted in author of lily & Me, Chapter XXI Armageddon, family, HM Submarines, HMS Cockade, military, The Royal Navy & Me, veterans | Tagged | Leave a comment

The Commercialization of our Sarced Poppy

Its is becoming difficult to imagine what the Legion will come up with next. They are clearly desperate to raise money as membership revenues decline at a rapid rate. I can not believe this was what our old veterans would have wished as a use for the Poppy??? The Poppy is a world wide symbol of Sacrifice and Remembrance. Shame on the Dominion Command leaders who see fit approve and promote this disgusting and ill thought out form of fund raising.   These bird feeders join the long list of rubbish being sold using the Poppy as the selling feature. Earrings, Umbrella’s, coffee mugs, cheap legion lager and the list goes on. Rather than an organization to aid veterans our present Leaders have turn the Legion into a shop on-line centre

Box of 5 Poppy Bird Feeders

Item # 300701
The feeder is long and expensive to ship as a single unit so we are offering an incentive to order in a case of five. Our Legion Poppy bird feeder, featuring our Poppy design, can be used to improve the survival of wild bird populations. This stunning garden ornament can bring style and colour to any outdoor garden space. Ideal for year round bird feeding the robust cast iron feeder is mounted on a metal stake making for secure easy positioning in flower beds, lawns or large pots on balconies and terraces. Suitable for seed, suet, and mealworms the dish shape also makes it ideal for providing birds with a refreshing drink. The feeder has a 29” overall height with a 5 ¾” diameter dish. We know you’ll be proud to share them with others, potentially as gifts for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and other suitable opportunities.

Your Price $74.75


God Bless and keep reading
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A Little Sunday Humour.

A magician worked on a cruise ship. The audience was different each week so the magician did the same tricks over and over again. There was only one problem:
The captain’s parrot saw the shows each week and began to understand how the Magician did every trick. Once he understood, he started shouting in the middle of the show, “Look, It’s not the same hat!” or, “Look, he’s hiding the flowers under the table!” Or “Hey, why are all the cards the ace of spades?” The magician was furious but couldn’t do anything. it was, after all, the Captain’s’ parrot.
Then one stormy night on the Pacific, the ship unfortunately sank, drowning almost all who were on board. The magician luckily found himself on a piece of wood floating in the middle of the sea, as fate would have it … With the parrot. They stared at each other with hatred, but did not utter a word. This went on for a day… And then 2 days. And then 3 days. Finally on the 4th day, the parrot could not hold back any longer and said….
“OK, I give up. Where’s the fuckin’ ship?”

God Bless and keep reading

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Autoimmune hemolytic anemia

If you are going to have a blood disease it might as well be something rare and exotic, rather than any old run of the mill common disease. This is what happened in my case and took a long time to diagnose and prescribe a treatment. I don’t want to go into details, I’m sure it would be of little interest to my readers. If you are interested look it up on line. However, when I visited my doctor yesterday, was quite surprised by what he said. This is so rare few doctors ever come across it during their careers. He went on to say it was a pity he didnt have medical student training with him, what a great opportunity to learn. Finally he wished I had lived near a medical training hospital, I would have a great specimen and student doctors would have been all over me. Thankfully I seem to be recovering, having a bunch of medical students poking and prodding did not appeal. If I am to get sick in the future I hope it will just be something common and and easily treatable, had enough exotic to last a life time God Bless and keep reading

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Discontent with Royal Canadian Legion Grows

It seems there is no end to the problems that beset the once proud and effective Royal Canadian Legion. We continue to hear of discontentment and even anger vented by dedicated veteran members. We continue to hear of self appointed select groups, misuse of authority and sometimes funds. The latest incident comes from branch number 11, located in the Toronto area. A ten year member, one who has been very dedicated and involved in the many duties and positions has decided to call it a day. The Legion are losing veteran members at an alarming rate and the leaders at Dominion and Provincial Commands are at a loss to stem the outward flow. I have been protesting the policies for several years and chose not to renew my membership for 2017. It was not an easy decision I have been a member for thirty years, have fill many position such as executive, Poppy Chair and many others. I was a member of Rustico Branch 13, the manager and president, an associate member, stole approximately $100.000 over a short period and the branch failed, it sadly no longer exists. I feel for the many veterans who put there sweat and tears into this branch that are no longer with us. I wonder what they would say, if they could see the mess.. At the PEI Provincial Command many members, have taken on an attitude of being better and superior to those members at the grass roots. They operate on the impression they know best, what they say goes, the rest of us should be quiet.  They refuse to hear complaints or listen to suggestions. Four years ago I transferred to the Wellington PEI Branch 17. At a regular monthly meeting I was surprised and indeed shocked to learn they maintained two levels of veterans, example WW2 and Korean vets received privileges to which other veterans have to pay for. I raised this issue on the floor, but no one seemed interested in changing it. We had a member at the meeting who is also with Provincial Command, he stood and gave us a lecture on who qualifies as a veteran. I don’t know about the other veterans there, but I certainly did not need someone  telling me if I was a veteran, I know I’m a veteran! I strongly disagree with the system of legion pretend medals, there are far too many.  They go far too often to the associates and the little special groups. Look at the photo I added at the top of this page, he has been around the Provincial command for years, he wears eight or nine legion medals and a couple o f recent  commemorative medals, never served a day in his life, reminds me  of Tom Eagles with his eleven fake medals and three commemorative medals. These are the people running the legions and making all the decisions,  mostly the wrong decisions. I have a real issue over the selling of tat, Poppy earrings, umbrellas, Legion Lager and all these items are embossed with the blood red Poppy. Surely the Poppy was never intended for such cheap commercialism??? In conclusion I have to say, James and I have not always agreed, however, it seems we have more in common than what sets us apart, there is nothing wrong with differing points of view. Nevertheless, the present day legion and those running it only recognize their views as being absolutely right. There is no room for intelligent debate. They claim this is Preparing for the 21st Century more like preparing for  the demise of the of this once proud and noble organization.

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If its okay for Boy Scouts-Cadets to wear medals, why not the Legion????

After re-reading this Legion response, I felt the need to address it again. This is indeed a very pathetic attempt to justify the legion argument in favour of their imitation medals. He begins by suggesting I have taken the selling of legion medals out of context?? Not sure how hw arrives at that conclusion. The 90th and 150th anniversary medals were both widely advertised for sale in the Legion Magazines at $25 ea plus P&P???

However, his next defense of legion medals is the most weak and ludicrous to date. He claims if its okay for Boy Scouts and Cadets to wear them why not the legion. I’m wondering if he forgot to mention Girl Guides? and he throws in the Knights of Columbus, a religious order as another example. He is attempting to justify that its okay for grown men to wear these imitation medals because children and youth are allowed to. Has he forgotten the legion is or was a veterans organization, and that the majority of veterans have medals earned in the service of their country. Since when did we need to wear cheap imitations on our right breasts????

PEI Command Letter to Guardian 25th July 2016

Finally the President of Provincial Command has responded to my many letters regarding the wearing of medals. In his haste to show how wrong I’m he fails to spell my name correctly, not once, but four times. He claims I have taken the selling of legion medals out of context? not sure how he arrived at that conclusion. Anyone who wishes to check the facts, can find the ads in back issues of the Legion Magazine. The Legion 90th anniversary medal was advertised at $25 plus P & P to all legion members More recently the 150 medal was also advertised at $25. I find it equally difficult to justify his comparison. If its okay for Boy Scouts-Cadets and Knights of Columbus to wear medals why not the legion. Perhaps he needs a reminder, the legion is a veterans organization and the majority of veterans have and wear actual medals earned in the service of their country. Veterans do not need to buy legion medals. Finally and apart from the spelling of my name, Mr John Yeo avoids completely the crucial issue I have been urging. That of family members wearing their late loved ones medals on the right breast to Remembrance Day Services. I found it very typical when Provincial Command President Yeo  quoted policy. I would be remiss if I did not mention that old legion chestnut!! “The legion does not say family members cannot not wear medals, we are just informing them of the law”.LOL the legion strongly support this law. I rest my case.

 

 

God Bless and keep reading

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A Timeto Think — Second Blog

Yesterday’s blog received many comments and  questions, it was clear to me many Canadian citizens are unaware of the roll played by associate members of the Royal Canadian Legion. Most were unaware of the fact the many medals they adorn themselves with are not real medals. This caused me to re-read the official wording from the Dept of Justice, and I have copied it below.

It may interest you to know that section 419 was enacted in 1920 under Bill No. 137, An Act to amend the Criminal Code, shortly after the close of World War I, in which many Canadians lost their lives. Veterans did not wish for those who did not serve in the military to display on themselves war decorations which they had not earned. The legislation was introduced in the House of Commons on May 28, 1920, by the then Minister of Justice, the Honourable C. J. Doherty. The Bill was supported by the then Prime Minister Sir Robert Laird Borden’s Unionist Party, which was composed primarily of former Conservative Party members and a smaller number of Liberal members of Parliament.

Having read this again, I wonder if it could be viewed in a different light? Has the Legion managed to circumvent the spirit of the law (419) by authorizing these unofficial and fake medals? Yet continue to deny blood relatives from wearing their late loved ones medals on their right breast. It is a fact today, at any given legion parade we will see vastly more members wearing these legion medals than actual veteran service medals. However, the serious nature of this is, most civilians assume they are veterans. I’m not sure when or why this this system of awards was begun. Is it possible to reach the conclusion that these  associates lacking medals felt less than adequate on parade beside actual veterans? Was this the reason for the creation of such cheap imitations. If this is accurate, how could the legion a veteran organization, ever contemplate creating such a tawdry system.   Seems there are many more questions than answers, and its worth noting, the Legion continues ignore my comments and remain utterly silent. If there was no guilt would they not issue me a stern and decisive argument??? Once more I rest my case/

God Bless and keep reading

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A Time of Thinking

During my lengthy illness,my mobility was limited to getting out of bed and sitting in my chair to getting back into bed. The heavy drug I was on effected my blood sugars sending then sky high which in turn limited my vision. Reading and watching TV was not much of an option consequently I spent most of my time with my eyes closed and thinking. You know my passion is to have the section 419 of the criminal code amended to allow blood relatives to wear their late loved ones medals on suitable occasions such as Remembrance Day. I have to tell you I could find no reasonable purpose to this part of that law.  Can you imagine any reasonable law enforcement arresting an eighty year old widow for this offense?  Can you imagine that same lady before the magistrate and being fined the $5000 maximum fine or if she was unable to pay being sent to jail for six months?  Can anyone explain how this widow is doing harm, is a danger to the citizens of Canada, is flaunting the laws of the land? What possible threat is she, and whom does she threaten by wearing her late husbands medals. I have given this a lot of thought and for the life of me fail to see a single reason why the law should not be amended. Understand, this law only applies here in Canada, in every other Commonwealth country it is not only permitted it is traditional

.It may interest you to know that section 419 was enacted in 1920 under Bill No. 137, An Act to amend the Criminal Code, shortly after the close of World War I, in which many Canadians lost their lives. Veterans did not wish for those who did not serve in the military to display on themselves war decorations which they had not earned. The legislation was introduced in the House of Commons on May 28, 1920, by the then Minister of Justice, the Honourable C. J. Doherty. The Bill was supported by the then Prime Minister Sir Robert Laird Borden’s Unionist Party, which was composed primarily of former Conservative Party members and a smaller number of Liberal members of Parliament.

The reason for this law passed in 1920 was probably done with good intentions. I believe some 6 million First World War medals (3) were mailed out to veterans and or relatives who had lost family members in the war. This would have meant there were lots of the medals about and were probably not difficult to come by. Its possible the actual veterans feared men who avoided going to war might be attempting to find favour when looking for work by wear these medals. However, this same situation would surely have existed in Britain and other parts of the Empire, yet those veterans did not see a need ban mothers widows and family members from wearing loved ones medals on the right breast. Circa 1920 cenotaphs and war memorials were being erected in cities, towns and villages all across the British Empire.  The names of the fallen were often inscribed on the base of these cenotaphs and their relatives attended the unveiling wearing the medals as a way of showing they had lost someone to the war. In most Commonwealth nations this practice became a tradition. Its important to understand we shall always have people who will wear medals for which they are not entitled and they are indeed breaking the law, but no law will completely stop that.. However, lets  return to the eighty year old widow for a moment, she lost her husband and for that reason alone I believe she has the right to wear his medals on her right breast. the attached photo shows a young girl wearing her Great Great Grandfathers WW1 medals while standing beside her Grandfather, a WW2 veteran)

This is 2017,  this long ago passed law was enacted in a very different world to the one we live in  today, yet remains in effect, surely there have been many changes in the intervening ninety seven years? One must ask oneself why we need such a law?, is it necessary? how does it affect us today. I believe the answer is this, if a blood relative wears a late loved ones medals on his/her right breast,  it does not in any way shape or form show disrespect, it does the exact opposite, it shows pride and honours the memory of one of our fallen. How could that not be right??

When I attempt I have the Royal Canadian Legion move to amend this law, the members at Dominion and Province Commands stubbornly dig their heels and adamantly refuse. Their excuse is this, to allow a person other than the earner of the medal to wear it dilutes the value of that medal.  Now I do understand not everyone will agree with my point of view and they have the right not too. However, and I’m not sure when this practice began, legions began to issue their own medals. These medals are not real medals and are not approved by the Monarch, hence may only be worn on the right breast. From what I have discovered the RCL is the only National legion doing this, In the UK and other Commonwealth countries, members receive lapel pins for different services they preform for their branches. These medals too, may well have been started with good intentions, however, now seems to border on the ridiculous! the majority of Associate members (civilians) parade in our cities towns and villages with more medals than most actual veterans. As an example Tom Eagles (past Pres Dominion Command)who has never served in any branch of military or police wears a total of thirteen medals, eleven legion and three commemorative medals. (photo shows Eagles wearing his 13/14 legion medals)

It is worth mentioning that Eagles recently attended Legion meetings in the UK. At those meetings he chose not to wear is many legion medals! Can we guess why? was he embarrassed, out of place, guilty or simply felt silly. I realize there are a few companies producing such unofficial medals and are apparently quite successful. They for the most part, look good, look real, and many people are attracted to buying them. Nevertheless, they are not medals, and are not recognised as awards for service to ones country. It matters not how many of these fake medals one wears, they will always remain fake.

In conclusion, I find no clear argument not to have this section of (419) of the criminal code amended to allow blood relatives wear their late loved ones medals if they wish. I also would stress for those who disagree, it does not affect you, if you do not wish your relatives to wear your medal when you pass, I m sure they will comply with your wishes. Finally, I welcome and invite anyone to challenge me and offer a compelling counter argument. To suggest if not worn by the actual winner of said medal, it dilutes the value , that just does not cut it for me. Though I doubt such a challenge will come. So I again rest my case.

God Bless and keep reading

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More Sunday Humour

Father O’Malley rose from his bed one morning.

It was a fine spring day in his new Washington D.C. Parish.

He walked to the window of his bedroom to get a deep breath of the

beautiful day outside.

He then noticed there was . . A donkey lying dead in the middle of

his front lawn.

He promptly called the White House .

The conversation went like this:

“Good morning. This is Donald Trump, How might I help you?”

“And the best of the day te yerself . This is Father O’Malley at

St. Ann’s Catholic Church.
There’s a donkey lying dead in me front lawn and would ye be so kind

as to send a couple o’yer lads to take care of the matter?”

Trump , considering himself to be quite a wit and recognizing the Irish accent,

thought he would have a little fun with the good father, replied,
“Well now Father, it was always my impression that you people took

care of the last rites!”

There was dead silence on the line for a moment . . . .
Father O’Malley then replied:

“Aye,’ tis certainly true; but we are also obliged to notify the next

of kin first, which is the reason for me call.”

God Bless and keep reading


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