McSally published the following Father’s Dad message, which is lovely:
My life was shaped early on to treat each day as a gift. I have my Dad to thank for that. He came from humble circumstances, was the first in his family to go to college, served in the Navy, used his GI bill to further his education, and he was driven to make a better life for me and my four siblings. I benefited from his hard work and dedication and am so grateful for that.
I lost my dad when I was 12 years old when he was just 49. Before he died, in between heart attacks, my Dad told me: “Make Me Proud.” Through the valley of grieve and beyond, my young life was propelled on a path to do just that and to carry on his legacy.
My Dad taught us five kids that hard work, education, and a mindset of service to others created a solid foundation for any path in life. I took his words to heart.
After high school, my journey took me to the U.S. Air Force Academy where I paid back for my education in service to our country. When I got there, they told me that girls couldn’t be fighter pilots, so naturally, I was determined to do just that. I was blessed to be in the right place at the right time with the right grit and qualifications to be the first women in U.S. history to fly in combat and command a fighter squadron in combat. It was the honor of my life to command an A-10 squadron at Davis-Monthan Air Force base and lead them into combat in Afghanistan.
Then, I took the same tenacity to the United States Congress, where I served for 4 years in the House of Representatives before serving the great state of Arizona in the Senate. The privilege is not one I take lightly. For me, this is an extension of my military service—only now I deploy to Washington, D.C.
We are all deeply impacted by our fathers influence on our lives, whether they were nurturing and loving or unfortunately not. My Dad’s life and way too early death inspired me to work hard, do my best, and have a servant’s heart to make a difference for others with the opportunities I have been given. Losing my Dad forced me to learn at the age of 12 that every day is a gift because we truly don’t know if today will be our last. Father’s Day reminds me to reflect on the lessons my Dad taught me and to live each day to make my Dad proud.
Happy Father’s Day to all of Arizona’s Dads. I miss mine today more than ever.
I just want to point out that McSally’s life was enhanced by the sort of “socialist” government programs that she will likely rail against in her bid for… er, retention?
According to McSally, here, her dad benefitted from an essentially free higher education under the GI Bill. Sounds like he put himself through college before the war, and then attended law school on the Bill. Framed as a thank you to the troops, the GI Bill was actually an incredibly canny investment in the future productivity of a massive, largely-untrained workforce that would otherwise have swamped the labor market.
Democrats propose exactly that level of investment in higher education for all that can benefit of it, not just those who can afford it, or those willing to burden themselves with often lifelong debt. Even if not paid for in service, that education will be paid for in greater future taxes on earning and greater spending by that individual. It’s what’s commonly called a public investment – the sort we used be able to make, before we became too broken.
When as a lawyer in the prime of his earning years, Mr. McSally tragically passed of a heart attack, it was undoubtedly a major blow to a family with five kids, both emotionally and economically. My sincere condolences to Senator McSally for her, and her family’s, loss.
Social Security would have certainly paid survivors benefits to the surviving spouse. In fact, child survivor benefits might have been paid for 12 year old Martha McSally herself, as well as her other minor sibs. That could have certainly have helped cushion the financial blow that such a loss would be to a family.
I certainly hope that McSally got the assistance that would have been her due. I also hope she appreciates the role that Social Security might have played in her family’s solvency during a terrible passage of life for her family – and certainly does play that role in the lives of millions.
McSally attended a private religious school until her graduation with top honors, no doubt on scholarship for her obvious and demonstrated academic achievements, but that was where she was tragically sexually abused by a staff member, as McSally has made public. McSally also recently revealed that she had been sexually assaulted by a superior officer while in the military. So, arguably, the two most formative institutions in McSally’s life, the Catholic Church and the Air Force, both betrayed her trust and repaid her faith with sexual abuse. I can only imagine that would light an unquenchable thirst for justice in a person. But I digress…
For her undergraduate education, McSally attended The Air Force Academy, a wise — and fully socialized — higher educational system. To ensure a steady supply of highly-educated recruits to fill the ranks of our military’s officer corps, our government wisely fully covers the cost of these institutions. The graduating young officers are expected to do a stint of public service to ‘pay back’ for their educations. I’m confident that these investments are wise and productive ones for all parties involved. Clearly they were in the case of Senator McSally.
I’m sure a combination of grants and scholarships covered the cost of McSally’s Master’s degree from Harvard; not all are as lucky nor as deserving as McSally. I would be very surprised if McSally ever needed to take on any debt to finance her education. I strongly suspect that she emerged largely, if not completely, debt free to begin her career in the military, starting with flight school. I’m happy to be corrected if I’m wrong about this point, of course, as I’m only making an educated guess.
We once thought quite narrowly of the nation’s security as merely it’s military preparedness. Thus it was deemed a vital defense priority only to ensure that supply of educated candidates for the officer corps.
Now we realize the close link between a nation’s security and all aspects of its growth and development. A robust economy that can innovate its way through the next century of increasing change is also vital to our national security, and perhaps our very survival as a civilization.
That kind of innovation economy requires a vast number of highly educated recruits for the workforce, civil society, and the government. The most efficient means to achieve that end is to fully socialize the cost of the higher public education system, and perhaps build some sort of public service component into it, which are components of what various Democrats are proposing.
Surely McSally can see the utility to the public of her own sterling education; can she not see the potential of millions more given the same sort of access to the kind of excellent education she attained?
Finally, McSally has likely always benefitted from some sort of socialized medicine, likely from her childhood onward.
Unless Mrs. McSally was fortunate enough to have a job as a single mother of five that granted medical benefits (which might be the case, I thought it futile to inquire into these details of McSally’s past through her office) her family seems likely to have been eligible for Medicaid. I would be happy to be enlightened on this point by those who actually know, rather than those merely guessing — I’m doing enough of that.
Created in 1965, it would have been in place when McSally’s family might have needed it in 1978. Certainly, others in their circumstances – a widow and her five children – might very well qualify, especially if SSI is the main source of family income. Many in McSally’s circumstances certainly would fit this description. I hope for McSally’s sake that her circumstances were not so strained growing up, but I admire her all the more personally were they so.
Even if she or her family weren’t on Medicaid at any point, McSally has experienced decades of the very best socialized medicine delivery system we have; the armed forces themselves and the VA. Democrats are not proposing this sort of completely socialized system that so competently serves the military and vets.
But surely, Senator McSally would like all Americans to know how comforting it is to know that the federal government has got your back if something goes wrong with your health, or if its your child who’s sick.
Or if your Dad dies unexpectedly, leaving a grieving widow and five dependent children.
We Dems want a society in which that widow and her children aren’t deemed unworthy of our utmost investment in their success and flourishing. We want a society that will materially support the human value and potential of the people in that family.
As to healthcare, we Dems merely want a single health insurance company that automatically grants coverage to every single American citizen, with a continued mix of for-profit and not-for-profit service delivery. We don’t want to own all the doctors, and hospitals, and clinics, and other medical facilities, we just want to shut down all the blood-sucking insurance companies.
Who’s for letting the death panels of the private health insurance racket to continue to prey on Americans?
Surely not “Let’s get this fucking thing done” McSally?
P.S. Happy Father’s Day, Dad. I know you would have gotten a kick out of this thing right here, boyo 🙂