It was the leaders of government, and the top generals—at least, that is how it seemed in memory.One of the most popular chants during the anti-war marches was, "Stop the war in Vietnam, bring the boys home." You heard that at every peace rally in America. Also, when one thought realistically about the image of what was supposed to have happened, it seemed questionable.So-called "hippies", no matter what else one may have felt about them, were not the most macho people in the world.Picture a burly member of the Green Berets, in full uniform, walking through an airport. Would the hippie have the nerve to spit on the soldier?Greene reprinted 81 letters detailing Vietnam veterans being spat upon in the first section of Homecoming.
Even then, Greene took the further precaution of warning his readers that there still might still be a phony letter or two included in the book.
As the letters poured in, the future column became four written columns excerpting eleven of the responses.
He included an open invitation for anyone who had spat upon a returning veteran to explain their motivation.
Even in this category of responses, reference can be found to overheard insults, to bullying, and to unkind acts.
A fourth section of Greene's book is a collection of instances where Vietnam veterans were not spat upon, but were insulted and/or abused.