You Laugh and Cry at the Same Time

It’s gotten so bad at Fort Campbell that the senior officer yesterday ordered his soldiers to stop committing suicide.

Who knows?  Maybe it will work.  Something sure needs to.

I have said it before, but I’ll say it again.  We cannot treat the men and women in our armed forces this way.  If the general public won’t support a draft, then don’t go to war.  Putting it on a small group of volunteers isn’t right.  If we’re, as a country, at war, the risks should be spread out over the whole country, not borne alone by a small group of volunteers.

2 thoughts on “You Laugh and Cry at the Same Time

  1. DH spent 20 years and 20 days in the Navy, and he thinks that everyone, male/female/whatever, should have to spend at least 3 years in one of the branches of our military as soon as they graduate from high school. No deferments (unless it’s a medical one, for things like diabetes/epilepsy/etc) allowed. If you want to go to college, do it after you’ve done your time in the armed forces. He also thinks it wouldn’t hurt to bring back the draft, but it would have to be along the same lines as the mandatory service after graduation, no deferments, and it hits everyone, no matter what their socioeconomic status might be (rich and poor alike have to serve). Maybe if everyone’s kids were serving, politicians would be more careful of when/where/why they wanted to start a war.

  2. I’m not sure further institutionalization of our nation’s creeping militarization is the solution, but I see DH’s point, Vesta. I think we have a lot of problems that lead to this, and a couple that come to mind are our national disdain for democracy and the aforementioned creeping militarization. Too many of us have bought into the reactionary anti-government meme (‘politicians are all crooked’; ‘you can’t trust the government’; ‘big government’; etc.). I think we should just cancel the next July 4th holiday, because celebrating our independence from the UK in favor of establishing our own form of government seems kind of ridiculous what with so many people loathing and fearing that very government. That fear and loathing is even more disturbing with the embrace of militant imperialism. People condemn government except when it starts wars.

    Long story short, all this conflicting bullshit gets us the kind of mass cognitive dissonance that reviles anti-war protesters as traitors to people in uniform, but sits quietly (or even cheers) while those same people in uniform are abused and discarded by the armchair Napoleons who dominate the civilian command of our military.

    Shorter still, I don’t think we need universal conscription. I think we need a country of people who aren’t stuck on stupid.

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