U.S. Air Force Photo by Senior Airman Clay Lancaster

In an age of looming government shutdowns, defunding of health programs, and less than 5% of the living population of the United States knowing what it is like to live in a declared war zone as a member of the armed forces, Congress’ decision to drop burn pit exposure from the Pentagon research list shouldn’t come as a surprise. Speaking as someone who sat 10 feet from burning medical waste for hours on end just to leave the gate on convoys and now has a host of weird maladies, the cancellation of Pentagon research into burn pit exposure is aggravating, disappointing, and potentially deadly.

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