Letters to the Editor

Required stint in the military a good idea to give kids ‘skin in the game’


Re Paul Formato’s letter Friday, “Learn respect in military”:

I agree with him on proposing universal military service. So long as our children have no “skin in the game,” it’s easy to call for sending our troops to fight other nations’ battles. We keep sending our impoverished and underprivileged to serve five, six, seven deployments without any understanding of the toll it is taking on our brave military heroes.

Being in the military is not only about facing enemy fire. It is about making a commitment to your country which includes a specified period of service, like it or not; being conditioned to blind obedience and to caring about the lives of your platoon/shipmates as much as you do your own.

It is about going where you are ordered to go and doing what you are ordered to do. It’s about standing a solitary watch on a cold, rainy night after marching all day and having nothing on your mind except why your girlfriend hasn’t answered your text messages for three weeks.

Too many well-heeled Americans who have never served - and never intend to serve - their country in any capacity are whining about what this great nation should do.

If there were a universal draft, and their own children were tasked to perform the duty every citizen owes their country, I wonder how much more thought they might give before advocating that we charge off and fight everyone else’s battles.

Pete Wade, Myrtle Beach