Since June 2009 our disabled veterans, their advocates, and their family and friends have contacted Congress and various administrations asking for fair and adequate compensation. So far, there has not been significant action on this issue. The Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) that they receive every year is not sufficient. Our government simply does not respond.

I am warning anyone and everyone who reads this. Once our young people become fully aware that if they should enlist in the armed forces and subsequently receive serious injuries or illnesses that they will spend the rest of their lives in near poverty our armed forces will disintegrate. It will happen very quickly and we will not be able to stop it.

Rob Burgess, Wabash Plain Dealer editor, may be reached by email at