The War at Home: Veterans

1966 Words8 Pages
War is hell. War is misery, suffering, pain, and anguish. From the days of rocks and sticks to today’s high tech drones and aircraft carriers one thing above all others has remained the same; war is a terrifying, nightmarish endeavor. Unfortunately for those who fight for their nation, the battlefield does not remain in the far off land where the battle took place. In fact, those warriors bring back that battlefield, festering in the hearts and minds, sometimes long after their uniforms have been put in the closet to collect dust. It should come as no surprise that for a variety of reasons all stemming from combat experience, many of our nations Veterans will act in unconventional or perhaps even illegal ways, in an attempt to cope with the stress of their military service. It may be easy for some to say that these men and women, despite their service, are criminals and should be locked away like any other who breaks the law. However, if rehabilitation is truly a goal of our justice system it would not make any sense to take a group of offenders suffering from the side effects of combat experiences and throw them in prison, which is little better than combat anyway. This is why the advent of Veteran’s courts is so important. Due to their service, and the effects that PTSD and other service related conditions may have on their criminal behavior, Veteran’s courts are not only an honorable way to treat our nation’s defenders, but a way in which to protect them from the negative impact of incarceration. These courts, which are based off of drug and mental health courts, are designed to take less serious offenders, who offenses were related to their service connected conditions and keep them away from incarceration and into treatment (...

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