When an American joins the military, they are aware of the risk that the job has to offer. Yet, many of us sign that contract with full knowledge that in combat we may be seriously injured or pay the ultimate sacrifice. We do it because we want to protect the land of free and home brave from all of the evil people who are trying to invade it to hurt our families.
Once we deploy into a foreign country, our mission is to eliminate the threat, make sure you have your battle buddies’ backs, and make it home alive. We never had the time focus on what would happen if we were severely inured or died; when we joined we were told that both ourselves and our families would be taken care of if something were to happen. Our minds are to be focused on the mission we have at task, we don’t have time to think about the “what if’s” because we all know that a distracted soldier is a dead soldier.
As we all know, in a time of war we will have severely wounded and fallen comrades. Our severely wounded will come home with burns, shot wounds, and missing limbs; some are self-conscious about their injuries and they think that no one would want to date a person with missing limbs, burns, or other health issues that come from their injuries. We can lose faith in finding a loved one, starting a family and living a somewhat normal life.
Jason Hallett is a young marine who at age of 19, stepped on an IED in Afghanistan in 2010 and is now a triple amputee. Jason found his wife Rachel on social media years later after they had dated when they both were in the 8th grade. Facebook led to phone calls, phone calls to visits, and then, a wedding day. Jason and Rachel are now ready to start a family but there’s a problem — a piece of shrapnel connected itself to one of his testicles. He now has to take testosterone injections to get back to normal; one of the side of effects is that it kills his sperm. In order to conceive a child, they will have to go through lengthy vitro fertilization treatments. In vitro is an expensive process that typically costs about 12 to 13 thousand dollars per try, and not to mention, the first try often doesn’t work.
In 1992, Congress passed a law that led to the Veterans Administration banning coverage of any in vitro fertilization services. There’s an estimated 1,800 veterans like Jason who are denied the service and will have to spend tens of thousands of dollars to get pregnant and start a family.
Senator Patty Murray, who sits on the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, wrote a bill that would lift the VA’s IVF ban. But for 6 years, her efforts have been blocked.
All newlyweds face challenges, but Jason and Rachel Hallett have more challenges than most. Jason became a triple amputee when he lost two legs and an arm by stepping on an IED while on patrol in Afghanistan. These injuries also affected his ability to start a family with his spouse.In 1992, Congress passed a law that led to the Veterans Administration banning coverage of any in-vitro fertilization (IVF) services. This law affects an estimated 1,800 veterans and their spouses. Tune in to PBS NewsHour tonight for the full report from correspondent William Brangham.
Posted by PBS NewsHour on Monday, January 4, 2016
What a slap in the face to all of our service members who go off to defend our country and come back home with life changing injuries. They are wanting to start a family and we are denying them one of the greatest gifts life has to offer. We have funds to give cell phones, EBT cards, and housing to non-contributing members of society whose whole lives revolve around living off of the government. Not only that, but now our president wants to bring refugees into our country.
How about we take care of those who gave up a normal life to defend our beloved country? Those who, even after their service is done, are still contributing members of society.
I can only imagine the outcome if this was happening to a congressman’s child; how long do you think it would take for the ban to be lifted?
What would you do if this were your son, Mr. President?
“It’s very angering and it brings a lot of resentment toward my active service,” said Jason.
We need to take care of our heroes like Jason, because pretty soon we won’t have Americans volunteering in our armed services; and then who will defend our country?
Let’s get a hold of our congressmen so we can get this ban lifted and so we can provide our veterans the treatment they earned and deserve.