"The reporter was asking about accounts that soldiers returning from Vietnam had been spat on by antiwar activists. I had told her the stories were not true. I told her that, on the contrary, opponents of the war had actually tried to recruit returning veterans. I told her about a 1971 Harris Poll survey that found that 99 percent of veterans said their reception from friends and family had been friendly, and 94 percent said their reception from age-group peers, the population most likely to have included the spitters, was friendly.
A follow-up poll, conducted in 1979 for the Veterans Administration (now the Department of Veterans Affairs), reported that former antiwar activists had warmer feelings toward Vietnam veterans than toward congressional leaders or even their erstwhile fellow travelers in the movement." NY Times opinion piece
Someone wrote to tell me that the NY times had published this piece. The author attempts to make the case that the pro-communist anti-war movement was warmly welcoming to soldiers coming back from the war in VN and that the stories of anti-war people spitting on soldiers and otherwise treating soldiers poorly are "urban myths."
From my point of view this revised narrative of that period has a basic flaw. I WAS SPAT UPON in March, 1968 while transiting San Francisco International Airport en route to Travis AFB to board the trans-Pacific airlift en route to Vietnam. I was in uniform and waiting for the bus when a woman got out of her car and walked across the parking lot. She chose to spit on my chest rather than on a sergeant standing next to me so perhaps she had a thing for officers. I asked if the people at her house had a roster to schedule spitting on soldiers. She said they did. Perhaps they sent only women to do this.
I wrote to the NY Times yesterday to tell this story in comment on their article. They did not publish my comment. There are 217 comments on the article.
IMO the left is engaged in editing the narrative of that time so as to absolve itself of the ugliness of its own actions. pl