I've said it before and I'll say it again, putting a magnetic bumper sticker made in China saying you support the troops is NOT supporting the troops. Ultimately we show true solidarity by electing leaders that will only put soldiers in harm's way if it is truly necessary and when so, to take care of them and their families. George Bush has not lived up to that, and he has shown us in his true cold-blooded spirit. He can take all the moments of silence he wants, but it does nothing for the livelihoods of those that don the uniform. It is terrible to continue to have to hear examples of how our troops are suffering in the current economic climate.
In the midst of the worst surge in mortgage defaults in seven decades, foreclosures in U.S. towns where soldiers live are increasing at a pace almost four times the national average, according to data compiled by research firm RealtyTrac Inc. in Irvine, California. As military families like the VerSteeghs signed up for the initial lower rates and easier terms of subprime mortgages, the number of people taking out Veterans Administration loans fell to the lowest in at least 12 years.
``We've never faced a situation like this, not in the Vietnam War, World War II, or the Korean War, where so many military are in danger of losing their homes,'' said Paul Sullivan, executive director of Veterans for Common Sense, a Washington-based advocacy group started in 2002 by Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans. ``No one asked them for their credit score when we asked them to fight for us.''
Foreclosure filings in 10 towns and cities within 10 miles of military facilities, including Norfolk, Virginia, home of the Navy's largest base, rose by an average 217 percent from January through April from a year earlier. Nationally, the rate was 59 percent in the same period, according to RealtyTrac, which tallies bank seizures, auctions and default notices.