Letter to the Editor or Speak Your Piece Article for Consideration
 
To: Mr. Bruce Ross Record Searchlight Editorial Editor
 
From: John E. Cleckner Sr, Redding CA
 
I have been watching and listening with great interest to see if anyone in
the media or if any of the Candidates for Governor of California will
mention VETERANS as part of the issues they have been discussing for the
upcoming recall election.
 
Remember, California has the largest voting block of Veterans, Dependants,
National Guard and Reserves in the United States. This voting block also
spans the entire Social Economic Spectrum. You are talking about society
as it currently exists.
 
The point is that there are between 3 and 4 million Military Veterans
living in California. They traditionally register and vote, as do their
dependants. Again this figure with dependants ranges from 9 to 12 million
individuals depending on who is counting. And this is not counting the
National Guard and Reserves and their dependants who live in California.
 
My points is, who among the Candidates, i.e. Bustamante, Peter Ueberoth,
McClintock, Schwarzenegger and the others, are going to address this issue
and when are they going to do it. Obviously these candidates aren't even
aware of this group of Californians and their special needs, especially in
Heath Care.
 
This issue also ties in with the fact that America is fighting Terrorism
around the world. Our men and women are being put in harms way in every
corner of the Globe and are being brought home wounded and injured and in
need of the best Medical Care America can give them.
 
Right now the Veterans Administration (VA) cannot handle the Veterans they
have to treat from all our past wars. What is going to happen to these
young military members when they come home severally wounded and there are
no facilities to care for them and those in power possibly in California
are not even aware of these needs?
 
I have another point to make and it is a BIG one. Governor Gray Davis has
supported the Veterans of California 1000%. He is a Veteran and is aware
of our plight. He has taken measure that has never been taken before in
the history of California in support of Veterans.
 
Veterans and those that support our National Heroes need to think about
what I just wrote. Who is talking to the Candidates about California
Veterans and their needs? To my knowledge NO ONE is.
 
If the recall is defeated then Governor Davis would remain in office and
all of the support he has given Veterans would continue.
 
 
 
Major John E. Cleckner Sr.
 
United States Army Special Forces Retired
 
Past President, Shasta County Veterans Affiliated Council
 
Past Chairman of the Board of Victory Ensured Though Service V.E.T.S.
 
Past Chairman of the Board of the Northern California VA Health Care
System Advisory Council
 
3560 Dwayne Ct.
 
Redding CA 96001-3454
 
(530) 243-2100