Open letter to Brooke Baldwin:

Like the rest of the country, I heard your deep-seated, profound opinion on this nation’s veterans..


I’m sorry- What did you say? You love our veterans but… they don’t know their communities and are ready to do battle? Are you implying our veterans are to blame for the lunacy in Baltimore right now?

Are you trying to become the least-liked person in the country? Or maybe Brian Williams paid you to deflect the shame of his fairy-tale. If so he sure got his money’s worth.


I am the surviving spouse of Lt. Louis Allen. While he never had the opportunity to represent the veteran community, I’m blessed to personally know hundreds who have. Like the Vietnam veterans who have cradled me and my four boys in their embrace since that day almost 10 years ago, when my husband was killed. Or the veterans I have the privilege of serving in my capacity as a Veterans Specialist ; they come to our office fresh out of the military, from a place of death and a world where each breath may be their last. Where they saw their buddies die in front of them as they missed their children’s birthdays or first steps, or high school graduations, so that you may be safe as you attend each of your family events. They come to see us having borne the wounds of war for decades before grudgingly admitting they need help. They come to us wracked with scars, some we can see and many we cannot. They are dying from Agent Orange – induced illnesses. They are saddened they have been forgotten by so many. But they are stronger than you or I will ever be.

No, Miss Baldwin – these veterans who were fighting to reclaim the streets of Baltimore even as you besmirched them- they are not the cause of such anarchy. They are all that protects you from that anarchy. They will continue to stand in harm’s way so that you will not. They are ready to do battle. And you better thank them for that.


Now, we all make mistakes. Say stupid things we regret even as they fall past of our lips. But haven’t you learned how to make amends for your mistakes? Or maybe CNN should step in and teach you.

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Barb Allen

Barb Allen

Barb Allen is all about resilience, patriotism, and the American Dream. She’s an author who has turned her own life’s tragedies and traumas into a best- selling book. She’s an expert at finding humor, blessings, and opportunity in both personal and professional adversities and she loves helping people build their own American Dream. Barb's husband, Lt Louis Allen, was killed in Iraq in 2005, along with the Commanding Officer. SSG Alberto Martinez was arrested and tried for their murders. He was acquitted after pleading guilty. This compounded tragedy sent Barb into a 10 year tailspin. Today she is stronger for her experiences and loves leading others through their own adversity. Her keynote talks reach audiences at their cores, and her books both entertain and move her readers. Barb and her fiance founded The Great American Syndicate, a patriotic platform featuring a community, podcasts, workshops, and live events.

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