Smithsonian: Please update this exhibit and show our troops the respect they deserve!
My husband is a Sgt. in the Marine Corps and a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom whose family has served in almost every war this country has been in. We visited the National Museum of American History to the “Price of Freedom- Americans at War” exhibit to immerse ourselves in the pride and heritage that comes from those who have served our country from the War of Independence to our present day conflicts.
What he wound up feeling, as we came through the last part of the exhibit encompassing the Gulf War to today, was pure shock and disappointment. Three wars and the largest domestic terrorist attack in our nations history are displayed in a manner of seemingly careless indifference.
The size of the display room is equivalent to a living room at best and the displays are comprised of less than 20 pictures and 20 artifacts for all three wars combined. A pair of chocolate chip cammis' from Desert Storm and a laptop used by an NBC camera man in Iraq are how this part of the exhibit begins and ends. That and a deck of “Iraqi Most Wanted” playing cards does not an exhibit make!
This issue is not political or whether one agrees with the wars - it is one of respect; and I want the message to go to the creators of this exhibit and the director of the museum over all to know that the attention to detail that was put into the exhibit for the other wars should be shown to these too. There is no excuse! They need to bring this section of the exhibit up to date by adding more artifacts and thoroughly explaining the events and activities taking place in the field and at home.
Millions of people from our country and around the world come to this museum in our nation's capital every year to see just what it means to be an American and truly get the sense of patriotism and pride for which we are renowned. This minimal display representing decades of war is disrespectful to our military, their families and our nation.
By signing this petition, you will show my husband and all his brothers and sisters in arms who have volunteered to fight to protect out freedoms like generations of the bravest before, that we are proud of them and we are proud to be Americans.
Links to the interactive exhibit and an article on the state of the exhibit