Can We Save Ourselves, Can We Save This Marine?

Muslims on our college campuses are getting particular special treatment. Then they are also placed in positions that put other students at risk.

Muslims are have created programs out of alleged Islamophobia.

There is a real detriment and this Marine tells his story.

Student vet with PTSD suspended, labeled ‘threat’ to peers after requesting to meet with non-Muslim counselor

  • Jeremy Rawls, a former active-duty Marine and senior at Mississippi College was recently suspended and labeled a threat to himself and other students after requesting to meet with a non-Muslim counselor.
  • Rawls has been diagnosed with several combat-related disabilities including lung disease and post traumatic stress disorder.

Months after the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) pledged to improve its treatment of veterans, disabled student veteran Jeremy Rawls is hoping his college might do the same.

Since February, the rising senior at Mississippi College in Clinton, Miss. has struggled to maintain good grades and reclaim his work-study position after MC administrators allegedly suspended him and labeled him a threat to himself and other students.

In an exclusive interview with Campus Reform, the former active-duty Marine who served two combat tours in Iraq said his suspension came after he requested to meet with a different counselor in the school’s Office of Counseling and Disability Services. Rawls, who is diagnosed with combat-related post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), was originally paired with a female counselor who wore traditional Muslim dress during his initial visit to the office.

“It’s not that I didn’t want to participate… I didn’t want to traumatize her and it wasn’t a good environment to be talking about [my disabilities] with that specific person,” Rawls said.

Rawls’s original reason for visiting the school’s counseling office was to pick up paperwork intended for his professors, a task that had been delayed because of a lengthy recovery from knee surgery.

“Every semester I have to identify with the school as disabled and they give me letters to give to my professors,” Rawls explained. “This semester I had a surgery at the beginning which caused some issues in getting some letters.”

According to Rawls, his attempts to meet with staff members to discuss the school’s policy about changing counselors were repeatedly ignored and it wasn’t until a recent meeting with administrators that he was able to speak with staff.

“Their response was suspending me pending a mental evaluation which I provided and then they put me on further restriction and a reintegration program,” Rawls said.

In an email notifying Rawls of his suspension, Associate Dean of Students Jonathan Ambrose said administrators and the Student Intervention Team have a “due diligence in not only the protection of yourself, but also the campus community as a whole from potential harm or the threat there of.”

“You are not permitted to be on campus for any reason or attend class during the duration of the Interim Suspension unless you have written permission,” states an email sent to Rawls on Feb. 26 and later obtained by Campus Reform.

“To have been a marine and to tell us we’re a threat…that’s actually a compliment,” said Rawls. “But telling me I’m a threat to others was extremely offensive.”

According to Rawls, who is pursuing a degree in English with a minor in education, the school never spoke with “a single professor” about his grades or behavior prior to suspending and subsequently removing him from a work-study position which he’d procured through the local VA.

On March 16, Rawls was notified of his permission to reintegrate back into academics after fulfilling the school’s request for an independent mental evaluation.

“At this time, you are only allowed integration back into academics, meaning: attending class, lectures, or any other academic related matter that is pertinent to a class or graded assignment,” Ambrose wrote in a second email to the student veteran.

In addition to a provision restricting Rawls from attending on-campus events or participating in student organizations, the school’s Integration Action Plan required that he “show ability to handle [his] academic course load” and “demonstrate regular attendance in mental health therapy at a licensed therapist” of his choice.

“The college itself is very supportive, there is just an ignorance toward veterans with PTSD and they are demonized so much by the media which led to confusion about what they [MC administrators] were dealing with,” Rawls said.

According to Rawls, the university also requested that he provide access to his medical records to the very counseling department where he encountered the original problem.

After successfully filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Rawls began seeking legal representation—a task he says has been more difficult than anticipated.

“Lawyers generally see veterans as an issue,” Rawls explained, adding that “every single one has told me ‘Yes, this is an issue,’ but they don’t do civil rights law or they’re not in the right location or they’re too busy.”

“I’ve been given every excuse imaginable,” Rawls said.

Last Thursday, Rawls met with administrators in an effort to begin resolving the matter and to ensure that he is able to fully participate in academics and extracurricular activities in the coming school year.

“They asked me what I wanted and I told them I want to be a normal student and I want my job back,” Rawls said.

In addition to serving in the Marine Corps, Rawls worked as a private contractor in Afghanistan and was a member of the Army National Guard for seven years. He was on active-duty in Iraq during the Second Battle of Fallujah—named the bloodiest battle of the Iraq War—and says he’s lost many friends to suicide due to PTSD.

The committed student and proud veteran believes his school’s actions reflect the need for “cultural change.”

“If they’ll do this to me, and I’m one of the most outspoken veterans on campus, they’ll definitely do this to others,” Rawls said.

According to Rawls, friends of his who are familiar with the situation—namely fellow student veterans—are deeply offended by MC’s conduct.

“They believe that if they had an altercation, they are automatically going to be seen as the aggressor now or that because they have PTSD, they are going to be viewed as unstable,” Rawls said.

Although Rawls “doesn’t really see a long-term solution to this,” he remains dedicated to his academics and intends to graduate from MC next spring.

“I still wish to go to MC and I know the vast majority is conservative and veteran-friendly, I guess this issue has slipped through the cracks,” Rawls said.

Mississippi College did not respond to a request for comment in time for publication.


A Soldier and His Dog, Honor Them

There are a lot of stories about airline baggage handlers mishandling bags and belongings. Fortunately, that’s not the case for the Delta Honor Guard.

The Delta Honor Guard is a group of employees and baggage handlers at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta, Georgia. What they do for Fallen Soldiers is extremely touching.

In the video, they gather on the tarmac and hold a ceremony for a Fallen Soldier and his dog. Check out the people watching from inside the airport terminal. Very, very touching.

Big shout of to Delta for the respect they give to our Fallen Heroes, more airlines should do this.

Arrest all of the Top Leadership at the VA

Lawmakers are well aware of the poor performance of the new VA secretary and subpoenas are flying. Contention is real and valid.

The Inspector General has submitted several reports and yet no one heeded his alarming call to action.

He discloses his repeated efforts to raise his concerns with other senior officials at the agency but says he was consistently ignored. He also accuses top agency officials of deceiving Congress when they were asked about questionable practices.

When an Inspector General investigates government agencies and finds tangible evidence of malfeasance and fraud, then sounds the alarm with written reports and no one reads them or takes action, fire them and turn them over to the FBI and Justice for prison sentences. This is especially necessary at the Veterans Administration where the health safety is tantamount to anything else in government based on historical contracts with service members. The government promises to our treasured military have been broken for years and the scandals are not solved. General Shinseki and Robert McDonald, both secretaries of the VA have failed, sadly failed.

Doors are swung wide open for fraud, waste and abuse,” he writes in the March memo, which was obtained by The Washington Post. He adds, “I can state without reservation that VA has and continues to waste millions of dollars by paying excessive prices for goods and services due to breaches of Federal laws.”

“These unlawful acts may potentially result in serious harm or death to America’s veterans,” Frye wrote. “Collectively, I believe they serve to decay the entire VA health-care system.”

9 big takeaways from memo accusing VA of making a ‘mockery’ of spending rules

In March, the Department of Veterans Affairs’ senior procurement official, Jan R. Frye, sent a memo to Secretary Robert McDonald accusing other agency leaders of “gross mismanagement.” In the 35-page document, he describes a culture of “lawlessness and chaos” at the Veterans Health Administration, the massive health-care system for 8.7 million veterans.

Frye says the department has been spending at least $6 billion annually in violation of federal contracting rules. Here are nine major points from his memo:

  1. From the document:

What he’s saying: Frye says veterans are at risk if the government does not have contracts for private medical care and something goes wrong.


  1. From the document:

What he’s sayingVA is spending billions of dollars a year on medical care and supplies without contracts, but the public has no way to see how taxpayers’ money is being spent, Frye says.


  1. From the document:

What he’s sayingTop VA officials are ignoring the large discrepancy between authorized spending on medical care and supplies and spending that is done improperly, Frye says.


  1. From the document:

What he’s saying: VA has failed to hold anyone accountable for the improprieties he cites, or put contracts in place once officials realized they weren’t negotiated properly, Frye says.


  1. From the document:

What he’s saying: Frye says senior VA leaders must be held accountable for the problems with purchase cards he cites.


  1. From the document:

What he’s saying: Frye says he analyzed purchase card data from the Veterans Health Administration and found improprieties.


  1. From the document:

What he’s sayingThe purchase card program lacks oversight, Frye says.


  1. From the document:

What he’s sayingFrye says he has learned from the National Acquisition Center that employees at the Veterans Health Administration are buying thousands of medical supplies in off-the-shelf transactions, without competition.


  1. From the document:

What he’s saying: Frye tells McDonald that reforming VA will be challenging unless basic contracting problems are addressed.