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Old September 18th, 2012, 08:43 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Respecting our troops

This is something that's been on my mind for a while now. Let me preface by saying that I wholeheartedly respect members of the military for putting their life on the line - I mean absolutely no offense (especially considering I know some of you have served or are serving) and I only want to discuss the idea.

I have friends serving who use facebook as a method of preaching their values. Continually I see memes of pop culture heroes crying and why instead they should idolize soldiers.
For example:


My concern is, this was their career path - something they chose. They didn't get swept off the street and pulled from their homes to become trained soldiers. The fact that they signed themselves up, and potentially put their lives on the line, is something I do admire. Unfortunately, they chose their career path just as I have chose my own. While we both contribute to society, what gives them the right to demand even more praise?

i.e. When was the last time you thanked your garbage man? The one who has to deal with your trash.
The last time you thanked a restaurant cook? The one who puts food on your table.
The last time you thanked an engineer? The one who designed the toys you play with.
etc.

Though the military is our greatest defense, it's still just another career path. They may be impacting our lives, but there are so many people who do. Couldn't I treat them the same way I treat every other human being? A way where I don't have to idolize everything they do?



I do know that not everyone in the military acts like this - many are very humble. My only issue is those who want to be treated like they're the next coming of Christ.
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Old September 18th, 2012, 01:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I don't like those people either and i'm pretty sure they joined just because they wanted the attention. My advice is to block their posts from showing up. I've started doing that because i have friends i don't mind keeping in touch with, but i can't stand the crap they post.
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Old September 18th, 2012, 02:19 PM   #3 (permalink)
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If you don't like America you can get out.

I have mixed feelings about this, my witty joke is all I am going to say.
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Old September 18th, 2012, 04:45 PM   #4 (permalink)
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What the hell?! Whoever posted that pic doesn't understand the NHL lockout at all. Its more like they were asked to take a salary cut so that the owners could take a bigger slice of the profits. Anyway... not all soldiers are sigining up to fight for freedom and democracy my brother got out after he made a nice chunk of change to buy a house and a new car. I don't know how the U.S military works but I'd imagine there are bonuses and things for deploying overseas and signing back up for another tour. Its not even the most dangerous job you can do either not as long as we are fighting poorly trained and equipped brown people. Drone strikes and overwhelming air support will trump Ahkmed and his soviet era rifle all day every day.
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Old September 18th, 2012, 07:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Bertuzzi suspended was a long time ago. that image is so retarded. the context is so blown out IMO
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Old September 19th, 2012, 01:50 AM   #6 (permalink)
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100% agreed. The glorification of soldiers in the media as well as the attention-whoring really bothers me. I see it especially with military wives, thinking that their impregnator is out there fighting for freedom and commands respect, when in reality he sweeps hangars and signed up for the job so that he could get free college. It's a volunteer military, and most people I talk to that are joining these days are only doing it for the benefits that come after. With the astronomical cost of college, it's practically become conscription for the unprivileged.
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Old September 19th, 2012, 02:23 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Hmmm... well I can't say that I agree with all of your postulations. I was there, I did the job, and I have a very different perspective. For some, the military is a calling, it is a way of life, and a conscious choice to be part of something bigger then themselves. That being said, there are those that do indeed look to the military as a gravy train for college. Frankly I am fine with that as well. When you are in the military you learn that you are part of a tradition that has existed since the dawn of this nation. You learn discipline, honor, and service. Most would agree that they got a much more out of the experience then they expected.

Do I respect the soldier? Absolutely. Do I think we take care of them (we being the USA, government, and armchair quarterbacks everywhere) absolutely not. We expect them to perform with low bid equipment, substandard healthcare, and impossible rules of engagement for a salary that would make a career at McDonald's look appealing. It is indeed a travesty. Put up against a spoiled rich sports figure complaining that they can't afford their 30,000 square foot mansion because the owners are being too greedy makes me sick.

When I was in Iraq, on September 22, 2007 we lost 2 fine Marines in a IED attack. The lead on the news that day was Paris Hilton doing something incredibly blonde and vapid. One of our Marines took his breakfast tray and threw it through the TV because he was so frustrated that the country was so out of touch with what was going on overseas on their behalf. He didn't get any argument from anyone else in the room.

So I am sorry. None of you will get any sympathy from me on this topic. The Soldier volunteered for what they do, that is true, but the stakes of them not doing so is much too high for us to take for granted.

It is certainly your constitutional right to express your opinion, however uninformed and salacious it may be. Just don't expect me to stand up and cheer you on.



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Old September 19th, 2012, 02:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Don't get me wrong medic, I respect what they(and you) do, but some walk around expecting with a chip on their shoulder expecting the world to cater to them hand and foot and shower praises upon them.
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Old September 19th, 2012, 04:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I am no moderator here, but I believe it would be a good time to smooth this over and close the thread.


One gripe I have, is everybody talks about the benefits they have. They get amazing health care for life through the VA(not). From my several visits with my grandpa, nothing against the workers there, but they are understaffed, rushed, which leads to poor treatment and not giving a damn in general. Which it shouldn't be like that, one thing that needs an over haul is the VA hospitals.

Sure there are Douche bags who happen to be soldiers, just like there are douche's who happen to be politicians or paintball players(the majority IMO). Just keep in mind you don't have to like the person, you can very well hate the person, just make sure you respect the Soldier, their position, and what they do for you.



Please close.
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Old September 19th, 2012, 05:01 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Fair enough, I knew what this thread could potentially be before starting it. If anything, it's better posted now than 10 years ago. But I was really searching for everyone's views and opinions and we've gotten it without becoming a flame thread. Sorry if this was touching something more Medic, and I agree with Toxic we can close this thread now before it gets out of hand.
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Old September 19th, 2012, 05:11 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I agree. thread closed.
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Old September 21st, 2012, 09:14 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Allow me to abuse my moderation powers here slightly and get the last word in on the subject. Please do not feel that I am attacking anyone in particular, as I am not. I am giving you my perspective on the topic as a whole.

Soldiers, Airmen, Marines and Coasties (and even us civvies) are extremely proud of what we do. We see a great deal of greater purpose in what we do and we are fiercely protective of who we are and what we do. Many are jaded that there is a general level of depreciation as to what the soldier has done. Frankly we are are a culture who has spit on our veterans in the past. Literally spat on them. The military remembers that with great pain. We are charged with the maintenance of life and death, the protection of your liberties and the consecrated duty to write a blank check to the USA that includes my life should it come to pass. That does take a special person to deal with that responsibility.

As to closing this thread, ok, if you want to. But I thought we were having a discussion. Discussion by definition requires two dissenting sides to the conversation with the purpose to develop common understanding. Please understand that I am not butt hurt over the discussion and I am not singling out any one member here. There will be no retribution.

Lastly, it is very very very hard to understand what a veteran has gone through unless you have actually been there. I know that seems like a cop out to some, but that is the way it is. One of the hardest adjustments that the returning veteran express is that transition to 'real life' and dealing with the minutia of daily existing. While it may be a huge disaster to some that the dishes didn't get washed yesterday, to a vet, that really doesn't matter.

So what am I totally rambling on about? Not sure sometimes, but I am happy to entertain questions and discussion. I apologize if I came off as a bull in the china shop.

Anyway... if you want to discuss this, lets discuss.



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Old September 21st, 2012, 11:32 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Always liked you're style Medic - then let's discuss.

I can't say that I understand to the same level as someone who's been there and back about the mental stipulations a veteran goes through. But understanding through my brief education of the Human Psyche, I can attest to the fact that it's mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and even physically taxing. So I don't know whether or not I can soothe the soul and help return them to a state of mind prior to seeing combat.

And that's really what my argument comes down to - a personal level.

The nation treats our veterans like **** - for evidence we just need to look at the Westboro Baptist Church. I can't even imagine what makes people like them tick. Where is natural human decency at when you voice political and religious opinions in that manner at the grief of others. What good does that do?

But when it comes to an individual to individual - I'll smile and say hello. I'll shake their hand and say thanks for being there. But I don't think I'll give them the shirt off my back.

It just surprises me to see a soldier scoff at a professional athlete. They excelled at their craft, put in their time to hone their skills, and profited off their talents. They worked hard at what they wanted to do and became successful at it. In essence, it's the american dream. Not all of them are born into fame and fortune (unlike D-list celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton - but that's why they are D-list). It's like they said in the movie Up in the Air. Adults like professional athletes because they screw models and drive fast cars. Kids like professional athletes because they followed their dream.
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Old September 21st, 2012, 02:04 PM   #14 (permalink)
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The reason that sports players are able to make so much money is because they have an entire industry to promote them. TV contracts, ticket prices, stadiums with tens of thousands of seats... If you get good, everyone recognizes you and you get even more money from the popularity. Lets also add in the fact that there's significantly fewer athletes than there are military members. you have to be amazing at what you do, in order to be a professional athlete; that things the numbers down quite a bit

The military pretty much has an open door policy. They will take anyone and train then to be good, that means it's much more accessible than being an athlete. There's also very little fanfare and excitement to anyone outside the military. We already pay taxes to support them, that's enough for most people. We don't get to see them out there fighting, and there's no press coverage to speak of. I'm not sure that would work anyhow, nobody wants to watch somebody die.(or sit around for hours doing nothing) I suppose the military is simply promoted as a whole, and not individualized and not precieved as a glorious job.

I don't understand the crazy hatred people have either, but the irony(or beauty) of it is that our soldiers fight so that they are entitled to whatever opinion they wish to have.
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Old September 21st, 2012, 08:14 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Old September 22nd, 2012, 02:53 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Just to put my two cents in, just getting back Tuesday night from KAF after only 4 months, people in Texas treat you too nice. I feel like they treat me like some kind of hero when really I was just doing my job, which is working on the C-130 engines. I mean really its just the luck of the draw for me having amazing quality of life compared to the majority of the armed forces in OEF.

But thats only me, I had a chance to go out to the FOBs to fix a plane and holy cow I'm glad I was stationed at an airfield. Those people put up with such ****ty living conditions and for atleast 3 times longer than I did at KAF. Those are the people that deserve all the praise. It was those kind of people which made me feel safe when I heard the Sirens go off. I mean they weren't going to help if I won the rocket lottery but if it were to go down I had soldier more brave than I protecting my sorry arse.

I will have to say tho the thing that bothered me the most was the Afghan Army guys. With so many of there Forces just going nuts and shooting our guys it was a little bothersome. I never had to work with them but to the soldiers that had to everyday, screw that.

I'm proud to be in the AF but we are pampered compared to the other branches. If you saw what they have to do every day for atleast a year at a time, you'd appreciate them alot more.

Peace brah.
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Old September 28th, 2012, 10:01 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I can relate to your comments, especially after 9/11 and being a firefighter. People were buying me lunch and stuff like that just because I am a firefighter. I felt I didn't deserve it as I was just doing my job. And it is true that the soldier is just doing their job, and not all members of the military are kicking in doors and the tip of the spear, but that doesn't mean that each contribution wasn't important.

Frankly I don't mind the innate respect for our armed forces members. Before, you really didn't state that is what you did as the societal impetus was denigrating and shameful. My father came home from Viet Nam and was spit on, called baby killer, and automatically assumed to be a drug addict. It has taken forever for the society to come around to actually understanding a soldier's lot. More and more of our younger population are serving in combat positions and serving in general. You have my respect, and my thanks.



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Old September 30th, 2012, 08:41 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Service members who expect praise are not the majority. You get that more with the younger guys who put in 4-6 years or fewer. I'm comfortable saying this based on my experience of meeting people through my parents who were both active duty, enlisted and commissioned but also from working with them as a part of my job on base. It's the same thing you see in your day to day life as a civilian, you get immature and cocky people, the military isn't an exception.

As for my opinion, soldiers/airmen/sailors will always receive my handshake and thank you, whether they're retired, 19 years in, or 1 year in. No matter my opinion on them as a person, it takes a certain kind of person to put yourself in harms way for your country, and I will always make it a point to let them know I appreciate them. As for the ones that parade around the internet like they're some sort of special breed, they annoy me. As someone else mentioned, wives can be infinitely more annoying.

If you only take one thing away from this post, let it be that the people you refer to are not the majority. In fact, most of the people I've dealt with on a personal level, are awesome human beings. Humble and proud, those two traits are what make a good person both in the military and in day to day life.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 09:45 AM   #19 (permalink)
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That's completely reassuring. Of course I'll hear the voices of those egotistical, because they're the most vocal. I think something that has to do with that is the amount of ROTC people I'm friends with on Facebook. The humbled few are the minority on college campuses, but then again the ROTC program treats themselves like a fraternity.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 10:12 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Oh, ROTC is a whole different beast. You get the same immaturity as you would any typical 20 something except now they're commissioned and that can give some guys a god complex. But again, not too typical because of lot of guys coming in are doing it for the right reasons.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 08:25 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Oh, ROTC is a whole different beast. You get the same immaturity as you would any typical 20 something except now they're commissioned and that can give some guys a god complex. But again, not too typical because of lot of guys coming in are doing it for the right reasons.
I couldn't agree more. I hate that most of the junior officers are 4-5 years younger than me, and think that their **** don't stink. Mostly, it's the academy brats though...
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Old October 1st, 2012, 09:05 PM   #22 (permalink)
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on an unrelated tangent.... i've seen "elders" from the church of latter day saints who are barely out of puberty.... just saying... (if i offended anyone, i'm sorry, i just don't buy it)
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Old October 5th, 2012, 01:16 AM   #23 (permalink)
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on an unrelated tangent.... i've seen "elders" from the church of latter day saints who are barely out of puberty.... just saying... (if i offended anyone, i'm sorry, i just don't buy it)
That's because they get shipped off at around 18 or 19 so that they don't leave the church at a time when most young people begin to think for themselves.
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Old October 5th, 2012, 03:42 AM   #24 (permalink)
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That's because they get shipped off at around 18 or 19 so that they don't leave the church at a time when most young people begin to think for themselves.
Where is DUO when we need him?
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Old October 5th, 2012, 10:40 AM   #25 (permalink)
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That's because they get shipped off at around 18 or 19 so that they don't leave the church at a time when most young people begin to think for themselves.
As offensive as that can be taken, that actually makes a lot of sense.
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