The village of Bancroft apparently has no place in its community for homeless veterans. Denying a rezoning request for a veterans housing facility in order to keep the community “safe” from homeless veterans displays a complete absence of patriotism and gratitude for the enormous sacrifice made for us all by American veterans.

The heroes Bancroft village leaders wish to keep village residents “safe” from are the very people who put their lives on the line to protect those residents’ lives and liberties. Choosing to use the freedom they preserved for you to discriminate against veterans and the mentally ill is the most selfish choice anyone could ever make.

Veterans across this country have faced widespread discrimination in employment and housing since the first crop of Vietnam veterans returned home. It is due to policy decisions and patriotism failures that there are so many homeless veterans in this nation; a nation which professes to treasure it’s veterans.

Saying the equivalent of “not in my backyard” to veterans whom you owe a debt of gratitude and a return of service to is unacceptable. If you would rather not deal with homeless veterans, then you should either work to change the policies and public attitudes which enable this heinous treatment of veterans to continue to happen, or take up the call to military service yourself. And if you are neither brave enough nor selfless enough to put yourself in their former position on the battlefield, then at the very least stop discriminating against the bravest among us.

Theresa Rathwell


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