Danny Gonzalez 0

Bring ROTC Back to Colleges and Universities

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Last week the students of Columbia University shamelessly verbally attacked a wounded Iraq war vet, interrupting him during a speech with boos and shouting slurs like “racist” and “babykiller.” During a forum held by the University to debate whether or not to allow ROTC back on campus, Anthony Mascheck, who lost one of his legs and suffered internal injuries in Iraq in 2008, took the stage to speak in support of ROTC.

The students jeered at him, laughed at him, mocked and heckled him, and called the before mentioned names. The moderators called for respect, but the flagrant display of anti-military hatred had already shocked a nation.

The recent despicable behavior or the students at Columbia underlies a critical point, that military recruiters and ROTC programs have been banned from certain universities for far too long.

ROTC helps young people who want to get an education and also serve their country.

The Solomon Act is a law designed to ensure that all university students have the opportunity, if they so desire, to take part in great programs like ROTC. The Solomon Act also protects the rights of military recruiters to talk to some of the brightest, most competent Americans our country has to offer.

The US Military is the most highly trained, well educated fighting force in the history of the world. Thousands of college graduates have used ROTC to go on to amazing careers as officers in the armed forces. Studies show that over 95% of officers in the military have Bachelor’s Degrees or higher.

These are the kind of educated people we need serving in our military. In order to maintain our edge and position as the number one military in the world, we must have access to educated, critically-trained minds.

Unfortunately, many colleges and universities harbor discriminatory, anti-military views, and find ways to get around the Solomon Act. Until recently, the military’s “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy provided universities with an excuse to violate the Solomon Act. Others find loopholes by sending ROTC students to other schools to get their ROTC training. But recently the DADT policy was repealed by Congress.

Our troops serve honorably and bravely in Iraq and Afghanistan to protect our freedoms back home. They don’t deserve to be treated like garbage by those students who reap the benefits of what our troops fight for.

In his recent State of the Union address, even President Obama called on schools to “open the doors to our military recruiters” and ROTC programs, after the repeal of DADT.

For all these reasons and more, we are now calling on schools like Columbia, and others who currently discriminate AGAINST our troops, to end this anti-military policy and allow ROTC and military recruiters BACK on campus.  This is necessary to maintain a strong and highly educated military that can defend our homeland and our freedoms!



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