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What's Going On Here? Rude G.I.s

By: Cass Kanevil

Date Posted: 2000-04-01

This week’s article is dedicated to the RUDE GI's around island that don't know how to control themselves in a local establishment. I touched on this subject a little bit in my first article for the Japan Update. There was a letter written in response to that article stating that I should just mind my own business and take responsibility for my own actions. To "stop trying to change other people and their habits". That's unacceptable. Because of my desire to make this tour as livable as possible for ALL of us, I will try to ask others to check themselves out when out in public.

Last Saturday, my husband and I joined several buddies of ours at Kamikaze's Fight Club (one of our favorite places) to watch some great fights in their ring. It's a pretty popular place among GI's and local nationals, and we Americans usually take up more than half of the seats. You can find people there from all the services of the military watching and even fighting.

This particular evening, there were some VERY drunk GI's there (I'll give you 3 guesses which branch or service they were from). One, in particular, let's call him....oh...."Nelson", was actually kicked out 3 times! He was hanging on the ring ropes like a monkey, walking around the place trying to pick fights with just about everybody (No, he was actually not one of the event fighters), and just basically being a nuisance. He was part of a very large crowd that had all arrived together. The entire time "Nelson" was acting like an idiot, I just couldn't help but wonder why the men he had arrived with weren't trying to cool him off and get him to leave, especially after the first time he'd been kicked out and came back.

"Nelson" had a buddy in this group that was just as trashed as he was. Unfortunately for us, this group was sitting right in front of us and was constantly standing up during the fighting matches, blocking the view from not only us, but the local nationals that were sitting around us. We were repeatedly asking them to sit down or get the hell out of the way. This "Buddy" decided to turn around and challenge the men in our booth to some time outside just because we asked him to sit down. I'm pretty sure that at this point, "Buddy" would've argued with a signpost.

Now, the tickets to get into this place were ¥2000 per person and I wasn’t going to let some skinny, runty, wimpy, drunk grunt block my view and act like an idiot. I'm pretty sure the rest of the customers in the place felt the same. Eventually, there were enough people yelling at "Buddy" and he was FINALLY grabbed by one of the sane, sober one's in his group and made to sit down.

We had heard some remarks around the club that were pretty uncouth. Americans cheering for the American fighters but yelling out racial slurs against their opponents.

Understandably, we all need to let off a little steam, let loose and have some fun. We don't need to do it at others’ expense. We're not in the US where our worst consequence for acting like drunken slobs in a public place is ending up on a police blotter report. We are in a foreign country, where our actions not only represent us as individuals, but as Americans, and can have serious impact on how we are ALL treated here.

I Share Your Pain

Hello Cass,

I just finished reading your article and was just brought to tears. I'm so sorry about all that has happened. I too am like you: never ask for any help, deal with it all alone. Your are a very strong person and I commend you on all that you have been through with this accident. I just wanted you to know that I'm glad your husband is still with you and your daughter. I too

have children and can't imagine ever having to go through something like that.

I've been around the Marine Corps all my life, so if you need anything,

please give me a call. I've also been here before. This is our second tour in Okinawa.

Best Wishes to you and your family

Lisa M. Chastain

Response by Cass Kanevil

Lisa, thank you so much for your support, care and concern. It means a great deal to know that there are military wives out there in my community that are willing to be there for anyone in need going through rough times, regardless of branch of service, rank, or race. You are an example to be looked up to and I applaud your kindness and strength.

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