Last Update: Wednesday, July 23, 2014
|Fellow Veterans and Friends of Veterans|
|Written by San Fernando Valley Sun|
|Thursday, 29 March 2012 02:26|
Actor George Clooney and a few Congressmen were arrested – outside of the Sudanese embassy in Washington D.C. last week. The arrests were anticipated and was part of the actor's effort to draw attention to the humanitarian crisis in Sudan.
Wouldn't it be inspiring if actors and Congressmen would be willing to draw attention to the human rights violations that our own Government perpetrates against homeless Veterans here in the United States, particularly in Los Angeles, and get arrested on their behalf?
Regarding Mr. Clooney and the Congressmen: "They were protesting the violence committed by the government of Sudan on its own innocent men, women and children. They were demanding they allow humanitarian aid into the country before it becomes the largest humanitarian crisis in the world."
Memo to George Clooney: Los Angeles has our nation's largest population for homeless Veterans, even though we have the largest VA property in the nation, there are empty buildings and rampant abuse and misappropriation of Veterans land and facilities. And George, this is in your own back yard where you live in the lap of luxury, thanks to these very men and women who have defended your right to live the good life and prosper in a free-market economy where your profession is one of the highest-paid of all.
While Veterans land is illegally used for a public dog park, public park, public golf, public theaters, private school grounds, and a host of other egregious abuses, homeless Veterans sleep outside the locked gates to the VA.
These are heinous crimes against humanity right here in the United States -- against the very men and women who pledged their lives to defend the U.S. Constitution -- and now 20,000 disabled and disadvantaged Veterans are forced to live homeless and hungry in backalley squalor.
The Veterans Home is in Congressman Henry Waxman's 30th District and George Clooney lives nearby the Veterans Home in West Los Angeles.
No actor or elected member of Congress has ever supported our four-year protest on behalf of disabled, homeless and impoverished Veterans.
Meanwhile, the VA issued six arrest citations against me for holding a purportedly illegal protest --- after 66 consecutive Sundays of peaceful demonstrations.
The Clooney / Congressmen protest in D.C. was a publicity stunt and not a protest as they knew they would be arrested and the media would cover it.
Even though our Sunday Rallies are held at one of the busiest intersections in West Los Angeles and the Old Veterans Guard is made up of elderly Veterans in their 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s, the media has never officially covered our protest for four years.
When we started our Sunday Rally protests on March 9, 2008 (Sunday will be our 209th consecutive protest Rally), we never thought any of our protestors would be arrested because we are peaceful, non-violent, law-abiding demonstrators.
Nonetheless, after more than a year of protests the VA police issued false, trumped-up charges against me to appear in U.S. Federal Court. The U.S. Attorney's Office rightfully dismissed all six falsified citations.
The ACLU also filed a lawsuit against the VA's executive director, Donna Beiter and her chief of police, Ronald Mathis, for viewpoint discrimination, i.e., censorship.
On May 26, 2011, Judge S. James Otero of the United States District Court rendered his decision in the first ACLU lawsuit, ruling in my favor: " Plaintiff's First Amendment right was violated as a matter of law when Defendants committed impermissible viewpoint discrimination." .. "Therefore, Defendants' selective enforcement was an effort to suppress the Plaintiff's activity due to disagreement with his view."
In sum, the Defendants censored my Free Speech and violated my Constitutional Right under the First Amendment. This is a federal crime: "Federal Statute18 USC Section 242 makes it a crime for any person acting under color of law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom to willfully deprive or cause to be deprived from any person those rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution and laws of the U.S."
The foregoing notwithstanding, both Defendants are still employed by the U.S. Government and operating under the color of law in their official capacities at the largest VA in the nation. This is because there has been no accountability by any public official to enforce the law. Without exception, public officials should never be allowed to violate the Constitutional Rights of any Citizen without legal consequences.
Everyone who serves in the United States Military pledges his or her life to defend the U.S. Constitution. Thus, it is reprehensible that the Defendants violated my Constitutional Right while we were trying to defend the safety and well-being of fellow Veterans who are disabled from defending the Constitution, and are now homeless because their exclusive and legally deeded property has been pillaged and plundered for non- Veteran use.
In spite of being adjudicated via U.S. Court of a federal crime, the Defendants continue to manage and operate the largest VA in the nation. It is our understanding that Defendant Mathis has been transferred and is retiring, yet Defendant Beiter continues as the executive director of the Los Angeles VA, the largest in the nation. Ms. Beiter is not a Veteran while in charge of the largest VA in the nation but still trampled on a Veteran's Constitutional Right. This underscores how blatantly wrong her crime really is and an affront to all men and women who defend the U.S. Constitution.
Moreover, Congressman Waxman has never come to our aid or defense for Defendant Beiter and Mathis violating my Constitutional Right to Free Speech.
However, he is always thumping his chest about being a defender of this very Right that has been flagrantly violated by a public official entrusted to care for Veterans.
Not only did Defendants Beiter and Mathis violate my Constitutional Right, but they also violated their own Oath of Office by failing to support and defend the U.S. Constitution, and both should be immediately terminated from public employment and prosecuted under Federal Statute 18 USC Section 242.
For nearly ten months, General Eric K. Shinseki, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, has been respectfully requested to terminate the Defendants but he has refused to take action. By refusing to remove Ms. Beiter and Mr. Mathis from employment at the VA, Secretary Shinseki is also violating his own Oath of Office by refusing to support and defend the U.S. Constitution. Accordingly, he needs to be removed from public service as well.
Congressman Waxman is also violating his Oath of Office by not taking appropriate action and demanding that Secretary Shinseki fire Donna Beither as executive director of the Los Angeles VA in his District. Don't expect any actors or politicians to protest the misuse of Veterans land and the abuse of homeless Veterans in West Los Angeles because many of the actors and other fat-cats have children attending the wealthy and private Brentwood School that has a sweetheart deal with the VA for a playground and athletic field that is off limits to Veterans.
Henry Waxman is not going to stand up and say "no" to the wealthy fat-cats that feed his campaign coiffeurs, because it is so much easier to say "no" to homeless, hungry and impoverished Veterans.
Some day, this will be the real news and it will be a lot bigger than George Clooney and members of Congress holding a publicity stunt in D. C. on behalf of the Sudanese.
God Bless America and the Veterans Revolution!
Robert L. Rosebrock , who served in the U.S. Army from 1965-67, is the director of the Old Veterans Guard, and director Veterans Revolution.