ROTC and the Ivy League
Iím so astonished I donít even know how to react. Iím kinda pissed but itís not safe copping at attitude towards an institution that is such a fundamental piece of Sarahís life and that of her parents. And I have fabulous in-laws. I need to appreciate that Iím in their good graces and I need to make sure that it stays that way. Historically in-laws have a way of focus on something relatively minor and then deciding that youíre a no good turd. So I need to make sure that I donít do anything that conflicts with the idea that Iím a pretty workable son-in-law.
But that being said, O MY GOD!!!
I found out the other week that Yale and (all or almost all) of the other Ivy League schools donít allow ROTC on their campuses. Holy shit.
If there is any one institution that has attempted to be a force for good over the last 100yrs, itís the US Military. If there is any institution for which we owe our freedoms and way of life, itís the US Military. It hasnít always been rosy, I accept that. The Military has been sent into impossible situations by administrations that should have known better, but even then, the US Military did as well as human nature could possibly allow.
Anyone who criticizes our military needs to read more history. Iíd submit that since the dawn of human civilization, it would be tough to come up with an organization that has sacrificed more and succeeded more in the cause of ďGoodĒ, then the US Military.
And itís not because theyíre a bunch of Sister Theresaís. Itís because they are a bunch of Americanís that are maimed and killed attempting to defend our (and otherís all over the globe) value system of freedom, fair-play, honesty and tolerance.
Now there are folks that are going to say ďWhat about VietnamĒ? Vietnam was a Communist dictator trying to take over a neighboring country, that had a government that was struggling to get better. It will never be clear if going into Vietnam was a good move. But the domino theory of the spread of communism, was certainly valid at the time. If Johnson had let the military win, it would have been over with shortly. But instead of applying the overwhelming force necessary to win it, Johnson chose instead a limited approach such that the war might not distract the country for his ďGreat SocietyĒ experiment. His limited approach spent lives for no purpose, something he should be vilified for, forever.
Then Nixon came in. The country was so wracked with discontent that we werenít going to expand our commitment, but we bombed Hanoi into agreeing to the Peace Treaty of í73. The war was over and by successfully defending S. Vietnam, weíd won. Hanoi used the cessation of hostilities to re-arm and then attacked in í75. But we were emotionally worn out, and we were and distracted by Watergate. We didnít respond and S. Vietnam was overrun.
We won the war but lost the peace. Thereís no reason why S. Vietnam couldnít have ended up as another S. Korea. It could have been an invasion stopped and then a series of repressive Western supported dictators growing gradually less repressive under Western influence until finally they have a thriving country, freedom and the rule of law.
Donít like the way the military behaved in Vietnam? Read about how other civilianís have fared during wars. And remember, our servicemen were in a fight that their leaders were preventing them from winning, and many of their countrymen were singing the praise of the enemy and spitting on the returning veterans. Imagine that you arenít allowed to take out a missile battery because itís too near Hanoi. Then the missile battery takes out your buddy and you go home to be spit on. Think that wonít cause some servicemen to cross the line of acceptable conduct?
And also recall that what we call atrocities, most Armies call tactics.
If you account for the incredibly evil environment that was Vietnam, the US Military can still hold itís head high. Itís the Johnson Administration and various traitorous left-wing well intentioned simpletons that sentenced thousands of Americans and millions of Vietnamese and Cambodians to death.
How Ďbout ďToleranceĒ. Hard to accept that the US Military has been a force for tolerance? Consider how our country got formed. Consider which direction the flow of immigrants has been. Are people dieing to leave here, or to get here. Granted there has been times when our country wasnít exactly an idyllic bastion of tolerance. Take slavery for example. But be careful what you compare us to. How do you think life was in India or China in 1850? Ok, we werenít perfect, but we were better then most places. Heck, slavery continues to exist today in over a dozen countries. The US Military represents our values. And our values are generally something to be proud of.
But I digress.
Every American family has lost a member of the last couple of generations in the service of their country. Those deaths and injuries are not abstract. They are your father, your uncle and your grandfather. Recall the life-lasting sorrow associated with a family member that you lost. Your family and millions (think about that Ö..MILLIONS) of American families have lost family members that were fighting for freedom and our way of life. Now consider how the Ivy Leagueís attitude towards ROTC is akin to spitting on those families.
The US Military has been one of the most powerful forces for good the world has ever known. Americans, each and every one of us, owe the US Military for our freedoms, our opportunities our very way of life. It is a debt that can only be repaid by continued service.
But these universities that believe themselves to be the finest in our land, spit on these Americans that lay under crosses on every continent. They spit on the institution that has paid for the freedomís that they exercise.
The Ivy League has the right to spit on the US Military. The military ironically, paid to give them that right. But something is frighteningly wrong with academia that ROTC has now been banned on their institutions for over 30yrs now. Iím not sure what weíre going to do about it, but grassroots outrage would be a good place to start.
And itís not just a matter of reinstating ROTC at these campuses. If academia doesnít respect the debt paid by our fathers and grandfathers, I frankly donít want them near my children. Iím grudgingly willing to personally revile someone, and yet resist the temptation to knock them up-side the head. But I certainly donít want them near my child. My child, you see, might not yet have sufficient discipline to resist that same temptation.