CRAIG KESHISHIAN, San Clemente
My late uncle is a Marine. He fought on Okinawa in World War II. Not many survived to tell that tale. My late father is a Reserve Marine, ready to drop out of college at a moment’s notice to pick up arms in Korea and fight for freedom.
Just as I was leaving the Reagan White House as a young staffer to start law school, 241 Marines were blown up in their barracks in Beirut as they slept; they were there trying to keep the peace in war-torn Lebanon.
I don’t know a lot. But I do know we failed those kids who beat those Marines (in San Clemente recently). Our public schools failed them, by forsaking lessons on valor, service and civics. About heroic deeds that saved a nation and, indeed, the world. Places like Saratoga, Antietam, the Argonne, and the Bulge.
Instead of these teachings, our public schools are more concerned about social reengineering and “bullying.” Well, they failed on that latter score, for sure.
Our local leadership failed them. Preserving law, order and imposing respect for authority is leadership’s prime directive. Some leaders wanted to help our exceptional but overextended sheriffs with supplemental non-lethal security to monitor our homeless crisis, ironically the argument the Left presses when they screech for defunding police.
This would free up deputies to focus on what they do best: protecting us from criminals. I say get more deputies and get more non-lethal security folks. Can’t afford it? Cut the budget from somewhere else. Maybe someone other than that heroic lady could have stopped the melee before it started.
And, finally, our families failed them. When I grew up here and went to school here, this town was a true melting pot of whites and Latinos, straight, gay, whatever. And we all got along just fine.
None of us had any real money, let alone a car or an e-bike. There was respect for authority thanks to a scary vice principal who did one-armed pull-ups. He is a Marine, too. There was mischief, there was reefer, but nothing like the altercation at the Pier Bowl.