A soldier comes home from a deployment and his buddies are there to greet him and treat him to a plate full of wings and the magic of DVR. It’s the kind of storybook narrative that “Madison Avenue” is famous for.
Here’s the reality. On Saturday, November 11, 2017 all Buffalo Wild Wings restaurants in the U.S. will offer a complimentary order of wings with a side of fries to active and retired armed services members.
“The servicemen and women that make up the United States armed forces have dedicated their lives to protect our freedom, and we are honored to offer them a small token of gratitude this Veterans Day,” said Ben Nelsen, vice president of operations, Buffalo Wild Wings. “We invite all veterans and active duty military members to join us at their local B-Dubs restaurant on November 11 for some wings on the house.”
I think it’s a nice gesture and it makes sense for this guy’s guy brand. Sadly, the “small token” is also a reminder to Vets and non-Vets alike that duty in the U.S. military can come at an incredibly high price.
According to the VA’s own data:
- About 11-20 out of every 100 Veterans (or between 11-20%) who served in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom have PTSD in a given year.
- 23 out of 100 women (or 23%) reported sexual assault when in the military.
- 55 out of 100 women (or 55%) and 38 out of 100 men (or 38%) have experienced sexual harassment when in the military.
To complicate matters, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) estimates that 39,471 veterans are homeless on any given night.
In addition, about 1.4 million other veterans, meanwhile, are considered at risk of homelessness due to poverty, lack of support networks, and dismal living conditions in overcrowded or substandard housing.