united states armed services

Top 12 Things You Should Know About the U.S. Postal Service

(from the USPS website)

12. Nearly 6,000 mail carriers are attacked by dogs each year. All attacks are preventable. It’s a serious problem the Postal Service addresses every day and customers are asked to restrain their pets when carriers are on their delivery routes. While the Postal Service routinely promotes safety tips to avoid dog attacks, one week a year is dedicated to promoting education and public safety during the annual National Dog Bite Awareness Week in May.

11. The Postal Service has the country’s largest retail network — larger than McDonald’s, Starbucks and Walmart combined, domestically

10. Through the Carrier Alert Program, Postal Service letter carriers help monitor the well-being of elderly and disabled customers. If carriers notice an accumulation of mail that might indicate an accident or illness, they notify emergency personnel. In addition, each year postal employees go beyond the call of duty, some even risking their own safety to save the lives of the customers they serve. In 2015, the Postal Service recognized 318 employee heroes for going above and beyond.

9. The Postal Service processes and delivers nearly half of the world’s mail — 47 percent.

8. The Postal Service embraces the heroic service of the United States’ armed forces. More than 113,000 veterans are employed with the organization, and more than 140 stamps have been issued that reflect the nation’s military history, including the current Medal of Honor series. (As of Jan 2015)

7. The Postal Service is the only organization in the country that has the resources, network infrastructure and logistical capability to regularly deliver to every residential and business address in the nation.

6. The Postal Service has more than 200,000 vehicles, one of the largest civilian fleets in the world. Part of this fleet is currently in the process of being replaced with next generation vehicles to incorporate the automotive industry’s advances in ergonomics, safety features, fuel efficiency, low emissions and design flexibility.

5. The Postal Service can and does compete with the private sector — and it collaborates with it, too. UPS and FedEx pay the Postal Service to deliver hundreds of millions of their ground packages to residences, taking advantage of the Postal Service’s expansive delivery network. The Postal Service pays UPS and FedEx for air transportation, taking advantage of their comprehensive air networks.

4. Mail is a great communication tool. It’s personal. You can keep letters and cards forever. There are no monthly plans. No signal outages. No roaming charges. Regardless of geographic location, anyone can send a letter for just 47¢ to anywhere in the United States, its territories and U.S. military and diplomatic installations worldwide.

3. Mail is reliable, trusted and secure — more than 200 federal laws protect the sanctity of the U.S. Mail. These laws are enforced by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, one of the oldest law enforcement agencies in the country. U.S. Postal Inspectors are federal agents, mandated to safeguard the nation’s mail — including the people who move it and the customers who use it.

2. The U.S. Postal Service is the core of the $1.4 trillion mailing industry in this country that employs more than 7.5 million people.

1.The Postal Service receives NO tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

Veteran’s Day

                                               November 11, 2016

Veterans Day is an official United States public holiday, observed annually on November 11th, honoring all military veterans – that is, all who served in the United States Armed Forces….from World War I, which ended 98 years ago, on November 11, 1918….through nearly a century of history and conflict, to today.

(Veterans Day is not to be confused with Memorial Day. Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans, while Memorial Day, observed at the end of May each year, honors those who died while in military service.)

The iconic quotation by G. K. Chesterton encapsulates the attitude of those who have served, and serve today:

   The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him,
                          but because he loves what is behind him.

An enduring tradition: Joseph Ambrose, then, an 86-year-old World War I veteran, attends the dedication day parade for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in 1982. He is holding the flag that covered the casket of his son, who was killed in the Korean War.

Listen

Throughout the world on November 11th, there are remembrances of military service and lives lost in conflicts and wars. Throughout the history of the United States, Native Americans have enlisted and fought in the armed services, facing challenges both on and off the battlefields. Learn about 20th century Native American veterans in this Weekend Edition piece from November 11, 2000.

Photo: Members of the Native American veterans of the Vietnam War stand in honor as part of the color guard at the Vietnam Veterans War memorial ceremony on Veterans Day 1990. Credit: Mark Reinstein/Corbis via Getty Images 

The Emancipation Proclamation

January 1, 1863, A Transcription: By the President of the United States of America:

A Proclamation.

“That on the first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, all persons held as slaves within any State or designated part of a State, the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States, shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free; and the Executive Government of the United States, including the military and naval authority thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of such persons, and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom.

"That the Executive will, on the first day of January aforesaid, by proclamation, designate the States and parts of States, if any, in which the people thereof, respectively, shall then be in rebellion against the United States; and the fact that any State, or the people thereof, shall on that day be, in good faith, represented in the Congress of the United States by members chosen thereto at elections wherein a majority of the qualified voters of such State shall have participated, shall, in the absence of strong countervailing testimony, be deemed conclusive evidence that such State, and the people thereof, are not then in rebellion against the United States.”

Now, therefore I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, by virtue of the power in me vested as Commander-in-Chief, of the Army and Navy of the United States in time of actual armed rebellion against the authority and government of the United States, and as a fit and necessary war measure for suppressing said rebellion, do, on this first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and in accordance with my purpose so to do publicly proclaimed for the full period of one hundred days, from the day first above mentioned, order and designate as the States and parts of States wherein the people thereof respectively, are this day in rebellion against the United States, the following, to wit:

Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, (except the Parishes of St. Bernard, Plaquemines, Jefferson, St. John, St. Charles, St. James Ascension, Assumption, Terrebonne, Lafourche, St. Mary, St. Martin, and Orleans, including the City of New Orleans) Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia, (except the forty-eight counties designated as West Virginia, and also the counties of Berkley, Accomac, Northampton, Elizabeth City, York, Princess Ann, and Norfolk, including the cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth[)], and which excepted parts, are for the present, left precisely as if this proclamation were not issued.

And by virtue of the power, and for the purpose aforesaid, I do order and declare that all persons held as slaves within said designated States, and parts of States, are, and henceforward shall be free; and that the Executive government of the United States, including the military and naval authorities thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of said persons.

And I hereby enjoin upon the people so declared to be free to abstain from all violence, unless in necessary self-defence; and I recommend to them that, in all cases when allowed, they labor faithfully for reasonable wages.

And I further declare and make known, that such persons of suitable condition, will be received into the armed service of the United States to garrison forts, positions, stations, and other places, and to man vessels of all sorts in said service.

And upon this act, sincerely believed to be an act of justice, warranted by the Constitution, upon military necessity, I invoke the considerate judgment of mankind, and the gracious favor of Almighty God.

In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington, this first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the eighty-seventh.

By the President: ABRAHAM LINCOLN
WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

Photo: The slaves of General Thomas F. Drayton, 1862 © Henry P. Moore | Wikimedia Commons

3

July 26th 1948: Desegregation of US military

On this day in 1948, President Harry S. Truman signed Executive Order 9981 to abolish racial discrimination in the military. The order established the President’s Committee on Equality of Treatment and Opportunity in the Armed Services, which committed the United States government to the desegregation of the military, and equality within the ranks. This came in the aftermath of the Second World War, where thousands of African-American men and women joined the armed forces. The discrimination faced by African-American soldiers while fighting for their country led to a ‘Double V’ campaign against fascism abroad and racism at home. Activists like A. Philip Randolph had pushed for integration of the armed forces for a long time before Truman’s action. President Truman aimed to implement limited civil rights legislation to protect African-Americans but was thwarted by the threat of Southern filibuster in Congress; he therefore resorted to executive action and by the end of the Korean War the US military was almost completely integrated. Full civil desegregation in the United States did not begin until after the 1954 Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka which ruled school segregation unconstitutional.

2

Armed federal agents arrested this man over his student loan debt

In Houston on Monday, a man was arrested by seven deputies from the United States Marshals Service armed with automatic weapons over his failure to pay back a nearly 30-year-old loan. Paul Aker was detained by federal marshals, sent to jail for a brief period and made to sign a repayment plan. The amount he owed was surprisingly low for the action taken.

Always And Forever (Bucky/Steve x Reader)

Originally posted by winterscap

1943

“Sometimes, I think you like being punched.” Bucky sighed, walking over to his small-frames best friend, who was now trying to pull himself together.

“I had him on the ropes.” Steve said as he wiped blood off his chin.

“We gotta’ clean you up. (Y/N) would kill us both if you showed up all dirty and beaten up again.” Bucky said as he pulled him up. He noticed the small piece of paper, which was Steve’s rejected enlistment form. “How many times is this?”

He took a look at the paper, “Oh, you are from Paramus now.” He said sarcasticly before adding: “You know it is illegal to lie in the enlistment form. And, seriously, Jersey?”

“You get your orders?” Steve asked, looking at Bucky’s uniform.

Bucky paused for a moment, “107th, Sergeant James Barnes, shipping out to England first thing tomorrow.

“I should be going.” Steve responded, looking down.

“Come on,” Bucky chuckled, throwing his arm over Steve’s shoulder, “It is my last night. We gotta get you cleaned up.”

“Why where we going?”

“To the future.” He answered, handing him the newspaper. 

‘World’s Exposition of Tomorrow’ 1943, the newspaper said.

*

*

*

“(Y/N), please, for the love of God, please stop crying.” Bucky pleaded, turning to (Y/N), who was wiping her tears running down her face.

“You’re leaving!” She said, her voice cracking.

“I will come back, I told you. I promise.” He said, placing his hands on her shoulders.

“What if-”

“No. No what ifs. I will return to home, to you and Steve. I promise.” 

(Y/N) took a deep breath as Bucky pulled her into a hug. She buried her face at the crook of his neck as he held her tight.

“Can we go to the exposition now that you stopped crying. This is my last night!” Bucky said as they pulled back. (Y/N) chuckled at his adorable dorky smile, “I thought you would look more sexy in the uniform. You’re still the adorable cutie.” 

Bucky’s face fell. “You don’t think I look sexy?” He asked, his voice showing how dissapointed he was.

(Y/N) started to laugh, he did look sexy. He looked too hot in that uniform that she wanted to rip it off.

Bucky raised his eyebrows, “You won’t be laughing when I am done with you.” He growled, picking her up and tossing her over his shoulder.

“HEY!” She screamed as he slapped her ass. 

“Jesus Christ, I am out.” Steve said as he saw the two, “Well you should. It’s gonna be pretty loud here pal. We’ll see ya’ at the exposition.” Bucky said as he chuckled.

“Ew.” Steve said as he turned to leave.

***

“Hey Steve, what do you say we go danc-” Bucky spoke, turning to Steve. Steve wasn’t even there. 

Bucky looked around, and noticed the lighted wall, which had the ‘UNITED STATES ARMED SERVICES, RECRUITMENT’ sign. He sighed.

(Y/N) turned to see what was wrong, and she understood immediatly when she also saw the sign. “Oh god.” She mumbled. This was his 6th try, and (Y/N) wished he couldn’t get in with this one too. 

Bucky, (Y/N) and Steve had been friends since they were kids. They would run around the New York alleys, playing tag. (Y/N) and Bucky would often let Steve win, they would never want him to get upset because of his small frame, and his weak body. Their families were also friends, they lived close to each other and they were always together. After the loss of their parents, they started to live together. They would help each other out with everything, spend most of their times together. They were never separated from one and other.

Bucky and (Y/N) went to find Steve, they were not surprised when they saw him staring at the US flag.

“Come on! We’re kinda missing the point of fun. Let’s go dancing.” Bucky said, pulling Steve towards the door.

“You two go, I’ll catch up later.” Steve responded, making (Y/N) sigh. Bucky shot a look at him, “You’re really gonna do this again?” He asked, his voice tired.

(Y/N) didn’t even want to talk about it again. She had that talk with Steve millions times before, begging him to stay home. But no, he wasn’t giving up.

“Well, it is a fair, I am gonna try my luck.”

“As who? Steve from Ohio? They’d catch you, or worse they’d take you!”

Steve just stared at him before answering, “Look I know you think I can’t do this–”

(Y/N) covered her face with her hands, she really felt bad about this.

“This isn’t a back alley Steve, this is war!”

“I know it is a war! I-”

“ Why are you so keen to fight? There are so many important jobs!”

“What do you want me to do? Collect scrap metal in my little red wagon?”  

“Yes! Why not?” 

“l’m not gonna sit in a factory, Bucky...” 

Bucky sighed as he continued: 

“Bucky, come on. There are men laying down their lives.I got no right to do any less than them.That’s what you don`t understand.This isn’t about me.”

“Right. ‘Cause you got nothing to prove.” Bucky mumbled.

“Ugh. Can we just go dancing?” (Y/N) said.

“Yes, we can.” Bucky said and (Y/N) kissed Steve’s cheek,”I’ll see you at home, my hero.” 

Steve smiled, “Bye.” 

And with that, (Y/N) left outside to give the boys time to say good bye in private.

“Don’t do anything stupid until I get back.” Bucky said to Steve.

“How can l? You’re taking all the stupid with you.” Steve said with a grin.

“You’re a punk.” Bucky said as he pulled him to a hug, 

“Jerk.” Steve responded as he patted him on the back.

Bucky pulled away, walking towards the exit with a smile.

“Be careful. Don’t win the war till I get there!” 

***

“That was so fun!” I cheered as we got off the dance floor, walking towards the bar.

I took my shoes from the ground, which I took off while dancing. 

“Sergeant, I need to go fix my makeup.” I said as I grabbed my purse from the table.

“Uh-uh, you look beautiful anyway. Come here,” He said, pulling me back by my arm.  

I found myself pressed against him, his lips on my bare shoulder. His kisses were light, he led them down to my collarbone, and I shut my eyes in pleasure as I layed my head back. 

Lucky for us, there was no one else around, everyone was on the dancefloor. 

“Buck, someone’s going to see us! Sto-Oh!” I shouted when he grabbed my ass and pulled me even closer to him all of a sudden.

“Fuck whoever is looking, doll. Just dance with me.” He smirked against my ear. 

“God, I am gonna’ miss you.” I breathed out as he rested his forehead against mine. 

He responded by locking my lips with his. Our lips moved in sync softly as I brought my hands to the back of his neck. As one of his hand stayed on my waist, the other traveled up my back, holding me tight. 

When we pulled away, I buried my face at the crook of his neck, he rested his hands on my waist as we swayed right and left, back and forth, slowly to Frank Sinatra music.

Some day, when I’m awfully low
When the world is cold
I will feel a glow just thinking of you
And the way you look tonight

No words had to be said, we just enjoyed being in each others arms for a while. It felt so warm, so safe; like home. 

We danced, talked, listened to the music all night until sun rise, and he had to go. 

“I love you,” I whispered against his lips, breathless.

“I love you too.” He said with a low voice before pecking my lips. “I will be back before  you even know, doll.”

I smiled. “Don’t go fall for any other girl while you’re away.” 

He smiled, “Never. You’re the one for me, the only one.”

And he left. I started to cry on my way home. What if he wouldn’t come back?

When I came home, I wiped my tears so Steve wouldn’t notice that I cried. He’d hate it when I cried. 

“Steve? You up?” I asked as I walked into our shared apartment.

I walked over to his room, his bed was empty. I walked around the house, he wasn’t there. When I went down the kitchen, mumbling ‘where the hell could he be at this time?’ to myself, I noticed a small piece of paper on the table. 

It had my name on it. 

I sat down and opened it quickly.

Dear (Y/N),

I  got into the army. I am already on my way if you’re reading this. I am so sorry for leaving you, I know you wanted me to stay home, safe. But you have to understand, I have to do this. 

I promise, both me, and Bucky, will be home, back to you. How can we leave our best girl? 

“Can’t you just stop crying?” I said to myself as more tears came down my face. 

God, I couldn’t believe he was gone too. I thought of his small, weak frame and started to freak out. He could get hurt easily there. 

I was going to lose my mind. They were all I had. They were my family. My home. 

Months passed, and I recieved a letter from them every week, and write more myself.

One day, the door knocked and I opened it to see a really pretty woman standing before me.

“(Y/N), I am Agent Peggy Carter.” She introduced herself, and I invited her in. 

“So, you’re the girl Steve keeps writing about.” I said with a smile when we both sat down. 

She blushed and looked away, “He does write about me?”

“Yes, he does.”

After chatting a bit, she told me that she was here to bring me to see the boys. I happily said yes, and packed my stuff. 

Peggy was an amazing woman, I hoped Steve would ask her out soon. Me and her had good time all our way to their base. 

“Oh, you must know, they don’t know I am bringing you!”

“What? So it’s a surprise?”

“Yes!” 

We walked into the bar she told me they were in. The moment I looked around the room, our eyes met. His jaw dropped and the next thing I know, I was running towards him, laughing.

He was there. He was alive. God, I had missed him so much.

He picked me up and wrapped his arms around me tightly, spun me around as he laughed. I buried my face in his shoulder, wrapping my arms around his neck.

When he put me down, I held his face, he was so stunning. Then I brought his lips to mine, he held me by my waist, pulling me closer. Our kiss was deep, passionate. We pulled away when we were both out of breath.

“I missed you doll.”

“I missed you too. Where is Steve?” I looked away around the bar, searching for Steve’s small frame, but couldn’t see him. 

He didn’t answer, when I looked back at him, he was smiling. 

“Where is he?” I asked again. 

“Right behind you,” I heard a familier voice say. I would recognize that voice anywhere. 

I turned back, but it wasn’t Steve. It was a over 6 ft. man, but he had Steve’s face. So it was Steve, but my brain couldn’t function it. I was shocked.

“Steve?” I asked, surprised.

He smiled at me.

“Is this Steve? Why-How is he…. big?” I turned and asked Bucky. 

Peggy filled me in with Steve’s experiment, then I hugged Steve. 

“Remind me to give you a pep talk about you letting someone experiment on you later, okay?” I said, joking, as wrapped my arms around him. He chuckled.

They had to get back out there, so I only could stay there a couple days before heading back home. We had wonderful time together, it was so fun. I got to be with my family, with my boys again, it was amazing. It was so hard to say good bye afterwards.

My way back home was tortureous.

When I came back home, I did my best to be ‘okay’ and tried to move on. The war could last too much longer, I didn’t know when I could see them again.

After 3 months, someone knocked on the door. 

It was Steve. He was wearing his uniform, all cleaned up, looking so handsome. 

I was so shocked, exicited, happy to see him, I jumped straight into his arms, hugged him tight. 

“You’re okay, thank god! I missed you guys so much! Where is Bucky?”

He didn’t speak. He didn’t look at me. I saw him pulling out a yellow paper from his pocket.

And in that moment, my whole life fell apart.

“No…no. No. Don’t you dare tell me he is gone, Steve!” I stumbled back. 

My legs, hands started to shake. Next thing I know, I was down on the floor, on my knees, crying my eyes out.

He couldn’t be dead. 

My Bucky couldn’t be dead.

Steve kneeled down next to me and held me as I screamed, “He can’t be gone Steve! Bring him back to me! Steve, please, he can’t be gone!”

Steve just held me, tears streaming down his face. 

*

*

*

A year passed. 

And I lost both of them. 

I lost my family. My home. 

My entire life was gone. My heart, everything I had was gone with them. 

I grieved for years, joined Howard Stark to find Steve. But there was nothing for us to do except accepting they were gone. 

Peggy helped me move on. We started living together, she trained me, taught me how to fight. I was with her my whole life, but there was just something wrong with me. 

I wasn’t aging. I healed quick. I was too strong for a woman like me. She helped me keep it a secret.

Then time flew by. We fought the bad guys side by side. We built SHIELD. We made a difference. 

She got married, had kids, built a home. I, on the other side, didn’t have any long-lasting relationships since Bucky. I focused more on my job.

After a whole life time, I heard another news that would change my life forever, again. With a call from Nick Fury, my life was lighted up.

“Agent, I’ve got shocking news for you. We found him,”

Steve was alive.

*

*

*

*

Part 2 will be posted soon.