All-female Honor Flights a mistake
The top front-page news article in the Thursday, July 11, edition of the Daily Herald proposed Illinois' first all-female Honor Flight. This proposed Honor Flight would only be made available to female veterans, regardless of whether or not they served during a time of conflict.
"Separate, but Equal" is an idea hearkening back to segregation. As a Vietnam veteran, I believe an all-female Honor Flight is a selfish and self-centered idea that fails to take into consideration the underlying reason for an Honor Flight.
The Honor Flight Network specifically states that top priority is given to World War II veterans and terminally ill veterans from all wars. Currently, Honor Flights are open to World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War veterans, both male and female.
There are over 38,000 veterans, both male and female, who are on the waiting list for an Honor Flight. An all-female flight would be a slap in the face to all World War II, Korean War or Vietnam War veterans who are eligible but have not yet been chosen for this honor.
According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, an estimated 640 World War II veterans die each day. Our time to express our thanks to these brave men and women is running out.
It would be a mistake to allocate an Honor Flight specifically limited to veterans of one sex … or one race, one skin color or one religion. We all served together; we all should be honored together.