FilVets advocate: “If all of the veterans will die, we will continue fighting”

HOLLYWOOD – The battle for veterans equity spilled into the streets of Hollywood, with Filipino World War II veterans and their young advocates holding their annual Veterans Day rally, calling for full recognition and benefits.

“That’s the reason we’re here on Veterans Day; for these veterans, for the older generations that sacrificed to get us here, get us into college,” said one advocate.

For Filipino World War II veterans, the day becomes bittersweet, as less of them are physically able to carry the fight for equity. They embraced the youth, eager to fight for them – especially throughout California.

“If all of the veterans will die, we will continue fighting,” said Art Garcia, Justice for Fil-Am Veterans. “There are still 60,000 women, Filipino women, widows, and relatives, the sons and daughters of veterans, who will continue to reclaim equity for Filipino World War II veterans.”

While many veterans received lump sums in 2009, a series of bills calling for more pensions, benefits for survivors, and congressional medals of honor have since stalled over the years.

“I hope something dramatic will happen because of the changes in this political situation here,” said John Aspiras, a WWII veteran. “So we hope what we have been dreaming of may someday come true.”

There have been at least seven Filipino-American veterans bills introduced in the current session of Congress – including full equity, family benefits, family reunification, medals of honor, and changes for lump sum claims. All of them as stand alone or part of other bills have stalled in Congress.

If the bills do not advance, they will have to be reintroduced at the next congressional session.

“Although the Republicans are saying they are for the veterans, but in the truth, they do not want to give the benefits to Filipino World War II veterans, and all they want to give is lump sum,” said Art Garcia.

“There are some sponsors concerned about passing the laws,” said Eliseo Tomines, another Filipino WWII veteran. “I think the Republicans will have to pass some.”

Veteran advocates continue to be hopeful to pass some legislation, despite a Republican majority in both the House and Senate in the upcoming session.

2 Comments on this post.

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  • Mario
    12 November 2014 at 6:36 pm - Reply

    Filvet hoping from Republican help,for full benefits as what a US veteran gets.If you were recruited by US military and became a regular soldier under US flag,onces you retire,you received full military benefits including your children. The FilVet are different, they were regular soldier under PH Army, and helped the American troops during WW2. America recognized their helped, by giving them first priority to become US immigrant & bring their family in the US. Now they became a US citizen they also want the same benefits as what the regular US military veteran received..That is not are going to get Taxpayers money? The Democrats used the Filvets,and promised heaven and hell just to get votes. Since Dem loses the house they are trying to indoctrinate the FilVets that it is Republican fault. Manong,Don’t be greedy, arriving in the US with your is just fair.

    • noz
      17 November 2014 at 6:00 pm - Reply

      TY Mario for educating the public in this thread. these deceitful demonicraps have manipulated the filvets in the name of getting their votes. its too sad these new breeds were blindsided by too much lies of the demonicraps, who are too corrupt in their blame game tactics against the GOP, actually is nothing new, since the demonicraps are always regrouping thinking of dishonest tricks they can play to be ten steps or more ahead of the GOP.