Veteran Takes Exception to “Ticking Time Bomb” Reference

Photo courtesy of VAntage blog.

Veteran Alex Horton wrote about a recent newspaper story that portrayed veterans as “ticking time bombs” for the Veterans Affairs blog, VAntage:

By Alex Horton

A few weeks ago, we warned against an increasingly prevalent narrative in news: That war Veterans are violent, unstable, and dangerous. I explained why that simply isn’t the case, and how those aspersions can hurt Vets and deepen the divide between us and civilians.

Thursday, the national media moved a step closer to establishing this unfortunate characterization as conventional wisdom in the newsroom. USA Today, a national newspaper second to only the Wall Street Journal in distribution, published a story with a headline brimming with violent imagery:

Police get help with vets who are ticking bombs

In an age where millions of people get news from sources like Twitter, or simply glance at newspaper ledes during morning coffee, headlines often inform readers what they need to know. In this case, it’s that police officers need reinforcement in a growing battle with “ticking bomb” Veterans. It doesn’t matter that the program might be useful in helping law enforcement recognize issues facing some folks after returning from combat. The headline paints the story of Veterans—any Vet, really—as a ticking bomb, primed to explode.

The full article is available HERE.

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