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Sun Jun 17, 2012, 08:45 PM

"I've Never Had a Bad Day Since"

Last edited Mon Jun 18, 2012, 11:43 AM - Edit history (2)

Congressman Charlie Rangel often says that the last bad day he had was way back in 1950. Let me explain what he means by that.

Rangel joined the US Army at 18. He was assigned to the segregated, all-African-American 503rd Field Artillery Battalion. His nickname was “Sarge,” which was funny, because Rangel actually was a private first class, not a sergeant.

On November 27, 1950, Rangel’s commander, General Douglas MacArthur, learned that the Chinese Army was about to surround America’s Eighth Army. MacArthur ordered the Eighth Army to retreat. But that could happen only if American units held off the Chinese forces on the Eighth Army’s right flank. Charlie Rangel’s unit was given that suicide mission, in what became known as the Battle of Kunu-Ri.

The Chinese Army quickly surrounded Rangel’s unit. His unit kept fighting.

Sundown brought less shooting, but also bitter cold. The temperature dropped below zero. Even at night, the Chinese Army’s bugle orders rang out, and the night sky was lit by Chinese flares. Rangel called it a “waking nightmare.” He kept fighting.

Having the high ground, the Chinese Army pounded Rangel’s unit with artillery fire. On the third day, an explosion sent shrapnel into Rangel’s back. The shrapnel hit him so hard that he was tossed into a ditch. He kept fighting.

Rangel and his unit could hear American soldiers screaming and moaning. They could hear American soldiers being taken prisoner. Rangel said, “We couldn’t see any possible way out of the situation.” They could have surrendered. But they didn’t.

Rangel and his unit were trapped behind enemy lines for three days of heavy fighting. After three terrible days, under cover of darkness, Charlie Rangel, sleepless, wounded, bleeding and freezing, led 40 American soldiers to safety.

Half of Rangel’s battalion died in the fighting. Rangel spent a long time in the hospital, recuperating. For his courage and leadership, he was awarded a Purple Heart, a Bronze Star, two Presidential Unit Citations, and three battle stars.

And Charlie Rangel was awarded a certain perspective on life itself. As Charlie always says, “Since Kunu-ri, I have never, never had a bad day.”

One week from Tuesday, Congressman Charles Rangel faces the voters in the New York Democratic Primary. National Public Radio calls it Rangel’s “toughest reelection challenge” since he won the seat in 1970.

Win or lose, it won’t be a bad day for him. Not after what he went through at Kunu-ri. But I want it to be a good day for him. That’s why I’m helping him, and why you should, too. Click here.

Courage,

Alan Grayson

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 25 replies Author Time Post
Reply "I've Never Had a Bad Day Since" (Original post)
Alan Grayson Jun 2012 OP
Cooley Hurd Jun 2012 #1
rfranklin Jun 2012 #2
freshwest Jun 2012 #3
valerief Jun 2012 #22
Baitball Blogger Jun 2012 #4
Spitfire of ATJ Jun 2012 #5
Brigid Jun 2012 #11
Rhiannon12866 Jun 2012 #6
Ilsa Jun 2012 #7
bluerum Jun 2012 #8
siligut Jun 2012 #9
Brigid Jun 2012 #10
juajen Jun 2012 #12
The Wizard Jun 2012 #13
Jim Lane Jun 2012 #14
Baitball Blogger Jun 2012 #20
UnrepentantLiberal Jun 2012 #15
hfojvt Jun 2012 #17
Orangepeel Jun 2012 #24
UnrepentantLiberal Jun 2012 #25
Enrique Jun 2012 #16
hfojvt Jun 2012 #19
Liberal_Stalwart71 Jun 2012 #18
bvar22 Jun 2012 #21
Scootaloo Jun 2012 #23

Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 09:00 PM

1. Three Cheers for Rangel!

Yes, the ethics lapse sucked, but he has been a tireless fighter for DECADES!

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 09:02 PM

2. think about the Republican chickenhawks who have attacked Rangel...

 

they are a disgrace to the American flag.

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Response to rfranklin (Reply #2)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 09:04 PM

3. +1,000.

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Response to rfranklin (Reply #2)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 03:52 PM

22. That was my first thought. nt

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 09:07 PM

4. I sincerely hope that Rangel wins,

but all veterans who decide to run for office need to know we need that same kind of unselfish style of leadership in politics.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 09:21 PM

5. I ran across a Teabagger on YouTube who said they were gonna kick Rangle out

and put in a Tea Party guy.

I asked him if he knew what District Charley represented and he said it didn't matter, they would win because Charlie is a crook.

I told him good luck and laughed.

Can you picture a Tea Party guy walking around and shaking hands door to door in Harlem?

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Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #5)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 11:34 PM

11. Now that would be YouTube worthy!

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 09:32 PM

6. K&R! I've always rooted for Congressman Rangel!

Despite his recent troubles, the people in his district love him. Wish I could vote for him, but I'm NY-20, worked to elect and reelect Scott Murphy. I'm glad you're helping him out, a brave man and a terrific American!

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 09:33 PM

7. Thank you for posting this.

I knew Cingressman Rangel was decorated, but I didn't know the details. Incredible story of courage and determination.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 10:04 PM

8. Always liked Mr.Rangel. Felt bad about the ethics investigation but felt he endured

it well. I felt it was 90% witch hunt.

Was not aware of his extraordinary military experiences.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 10:37 PM

9. He certainly has perspective

I had a manager who, when asked how he was, would answer "I'm glad to be alive". I think his situation was something similar.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 11:32 PM

10. I guess if Kunu-Ri is your standard of comparison . . .

Then yes, any other day would be a good day.

Mr. Grayson! Hope to call you "Congressman" Grayson again soon! How is your campaign going?

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 11:38 PM

12. I have never heard this about this brave man. How wonderful that he survived. I hope he once again

perseveres. Thank you for posting this for us, and thank you for all you do for the cause.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Sun Jun 17, 2012, 11:50 PM

13. Congressman Rangle

has experienced the terror of combat. You hunt for those who are hunting for you. It's dirty, grueling, unforgiving and it demoralizes the victims. That the Repubes are always demanding another war is ironic as they refuse to neither fight them nor pay for them.
Any day I can see the green side of the grass is a good one.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 12:16 AM

14. Rangel is being challenged in the primary by a progressive Hispanic state legislator.

This is not a right-wing attack on Rangel. His current district has a PVI of D+41, and the redistricting probably didn't greatly reduce that. No Republican would have a chance. In the Republican year of 2010, Rangel won re-election with 80% of the vote.

The race is about demographics, not ideology. The newly drawn district is 55% Hispanic and only 27% black, so State Senator Adriano Espaillat (born in the Dominican Republic) sees an opportunity. (He's also 57 years old, to Rangel's 82.)

Espaillat is no teabagger. In the State Senate, he voted for marriage equality, part of the majority that enabled New York to become the first state to move by legislation rather than judicial decision to recognize same-sex marriages.

Rangel, with a much longer public record, could be considered a more dependable progressive, because he's more of a known quantity. Unfortunately, what's known about him also includes the ethical problems.

I'm not urging support for either one. I just wanted to put this race in perspective for DUers not familiar with it.

The primary is June 26. The winner will romp in November.

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #14)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 01:16 PM

20. Thank you for this information.

I had no idea.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 11:13 AM

15. Is this really Alan Grayson

 

or someone who posts his articles?

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Response to UnrepentantLiberal (Reply #15)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 12:49 PM

17. Does it matter?

Either way, the post is a request for funds, and there will be no replies or debate with the OP. It's no more personal contact with the great man than the letters I get from Al Franken, Tammy Baldwin, Michelle Obama, and emails from Sherrod Brown and Rob Zerban are personal messages.

Ah well, people are busy, and there's really no way to personally contact even all the 700,000 people in a Congressional District, even if you wanted to. To spend just one minute interacting with 700,000 people would take 5.6 years of full time work.

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Response to UnrepentantLiberal (Reply #15)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 12:26 PM

24. The account is his

Years ago, he did an online Q&A with DU and the admins confirmed his identity. I expect a campaign staffer is in charge of his online presence.

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Response to Orangepeel (Reply #24)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 12:37 PM

25. That's what I thought.

 

Nothing wrong with that. I like him.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 12:31 PM

16. I never knew that about him

but it's not a good reason to vote for him, imho. I don't know the details of the ethics problems, I don't know who he's running against and I don't know what the issues are. If I were voting in that primary, that's what I would be concerned about.

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Response to Enrique (Reply #16)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 12:59 PM

19. Here's his opponent

http://espaillatforcongress.com/portal/about-me-adriano-espaillat/

and here's some other background

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-06-18/rangel-s-42-year-stint-in-congress-hinges-on-n-dot-y-dot-latino-turnout

I am a big fan of Rangel. He did a great job of both defending Clinton and promoting Democratic values during Monicagate when I saw him on TV once or twice. When I research legilsation during the dark days of the Bush administration it seemed like almost every Democratic alternative to Bush legislation was an amendment offered by Charlie Rangel. I am not sure if he was writing them or if he was just the one picked to introduce and argue for them but either way he seemed to be lead person for the Democratic Party.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 12:52 PM

18. ...and the Right Wingnuts haven't let up on his since, either.

I love Charlie Rangel. Always have, always will.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 03:02 PM

21. Thank You!

I knew Charlie Rangel was a decorated veteran,
but I did NOT know he was with the Rear Guard at Kunu-Ri.
There are few man alive today who can make that claim.

Charlie Rangel IS a genuine American HERO.

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Response to Alan Grayson (Original post)

Mon Jun 18, 2012, 04:33 PM

23. Now that is some amazing perspective

I wish I weren't scraping pennies from under the furniture, waiting for payday.

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