Letter to the Editor

Support equal benefits

San Luis ObispoMay 25, 2014 

This Memorial Day, make this a truly memorable holiday, beyond the hot dogs, beer and intestinal distress. Support our veterans by helping them and their spouses gain the benefits they have earned, but are currently placed on indefinite hold by the Veterans Affairs office.

According to the V.A., the federal statute Title 38, section 103(c), prevents giving benefits to same gender spouses after the veteran dies from service related causes. Recently, the American Military Partner Association held its inaugural National Gala in Washington, D.C., honoring military spouse and war widow Tracy Johnson, along with others who have endured discrimination and championed equality. The V.A. denied Tracy her benefits as a widow until just recently. Thanks to a massive media push and coverage, her survivor benefits have been approved, but her story is far from isolated. Other same gender widows are waiting or have been denied their survivor benefits.

Our country can do better than this! So, thank a veteran for their service, fly the flag if you want, but do something that actually supports our troops: Tell your members of Congress to support the Charlie Morgan Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act and the Respect for Marriage Act.

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