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Comparison Wrong

Editor, News-Register:

On Dec. 25 you ran an article about spending Christmas behind bars at Belmont Correctional. In this article, Belmont Warden Gray compared life of an inmate during Christmas behind bars to life of a soldier deployed during Christmas.

Let me set the record straight to your readers and especially to Warden Gray. What our incarcerated felons experience is nothing compared to what our men and women deployed experience. At no time in the history of the Ohio Dept. of Rehabilitation and Correction has a rocket or mortar round impacted within the perimeter fence of a prison, has a suicide bomber blown himself up within a facility, has an emergency call gone out that everyone with O positive blood needs to report to the medical facility and give blood due to a mass casualty event, of has anybody wakend up in the middle of the night from explosions and had to run to the bunkers. Nor has anyone had to pour diesel fuel into a barrel and burn off human feces, has anyone had to wash their clothes by hand in 5-gallon buckets, has anyone been rationed to a 3-minute shower every third day, had to walk a mile in 120- degree heat to get to the chow hall, waited over six months for a 10-minute phone call or had their living quarters get over 130 degrees in the summer or 40 degrees during the winter.

Warden Gray, it is obvious that you have never spent a day in the life of a soldier. To pretend that you know or understand what our military men and women serving experience is a great mistake. To compare our military in any way, shape or form to that of a convicted felon is extremely disrespectful. Having served in the military for 27 years and two Iraq deployments, I know what I am talking about, unlike yourself.

Brian Beal



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