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NNOMYnews December 15 2020 - Military influencers in our public education

NNOMYnews December 15 2020 - Military influencers in our public education


NNNovember 2023  

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NNOMYnews 1053:  December 15 2020:
Military influencers in our public education

Hello ,

Young people who lacked the resources and scholarship to pursue a college or university education were increasingly predated by military recruitment as the Department of Defense recruitment budgets increased and their “supply” of willing and qualified recruits diminished in preceding years. As we head into 2021 following a year of pandemic, with likely an additional year of returning to normal in our country, many will face terrible job shortages and the offers of a military enlistment could reverse the recent past unwillingness to consider a military career. Influencers and militarized influences permeate our culture. Military recruitment advertising is inserted into sports, movies, and video games. From school teachers and counselors, to parents desperate themselves under financial hardships brought about by the pandemic will motivate enlistments as well. Our militarized culture is about to go into overdrive

#counter-recruitment | #nnomypeace | #peacefulcareers




 Fabiola Cardozo / NNOMY / español - Some elements make the popularity, frequency, and increased rate of the military enlistment of many young people possible. One of the most important is the influence they receive from their environment on the part of those people who act as counselors and teachers within the schools they attend, as well as from their parents or relatives at home. The normalization of militarization in American society leads us to think of military enlistment as a great option for young people’s futures. However, little is said about the real difficulties they will face. An adult who advises a teenager on military enlistment has naturalized war in a way that is not conducive to better decision-making on the part of young people, preventing the exploration of less violent alternatives.


Educators, teachers from Midwest gear up for Marine Corps Recruit Depot

Counselors and school teachers from across the Midwest traveled to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, where they got a little taste of just what Marine Corps boot camp is. The week-long experience included screaming Drill Instructors and grueling physical training.

Educators also experienced the operational side of the Marine Corps to see what everyday Marines do on the job.

“They’re going to go through some very carefully planned programs that show them what training is like as well as all the benefits that their students will get out of the Marine Corps when they become Marines,”



My Son Wants to Join the Army

Carvell Wallace / Slate - I am a 55-year-old father of three, and my eldest son just turned 18. He has a 3.9 GPA, is well-rounded, and has been accepted to numerous universities both here and internationally. The only problem is: He wants to disregard all of that and join the Army.

Now, don’t get me wrong: I have a lot of respect for our soldiers and our veterans, and I have absolutely no problem with the general concept of the armed forces. But I grew up under the apartheid regime in South Africa, and the moment I turned 18 in 1981 I was shipped off to Angola to fight against “communist revolutionaries.” I have seen war, and it’s not pretty. My son doesn’t know about the dirty side of war, only the more glamorous “defending the valor of the country” aspect. And whenever I try to talk to him about it, he brushes it off by telling me it’s a different era now.

He’s been military-besotted since he was a little boy, but I never realized his childhood interest would develop into this. Am I doing damage by trying to discourage my son from his dream, or am I doing my duty as a protective father?

—To Fight or Not to Fight



Who Joins the Military and Why: An Initial Reconnaissance

Isidro D. Ortiz, Ph.D. / Committee Opposed to Militarism and the Draft (COMD)  -  The demographic composition of the American military has been a subject of interest to scholars, journalists and counter-recruitment activists. Some of the last have contended that the composition reflects a “poverty draft.” A recent study provides insight into the issue. “A Mercenary Army of the poor? Technological Change and the Demographic Composition of post-9/11 U.S. Military” by Andrea Asoni et. al, sheds new light on the controversial notion that the “the American military is a mercenary army of the poor.” The investigators break methodological ground by analyzing individual-level data on two national samples covering the period 1979-2005. Their analyses of the data reveal, they claim, that “contrary to accepted wisdom, the U.S. military no longer primarily recruits individuals from the most disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds.” They also found that, in contrast to the past, those who join the American armed forces are at or above the median with respect to socio-economic indicators such as parental income, parental wealth and cognitive abilities — exactly the opposite of what other studies maintain. In other words, the armed forces recruited primarily from the middle-class sector of society. According to the investigators, at the roots of the change — which some have described as the “gentrification” of the military — are increases in the requirements of the “modern capital-intensive, information dominant, expeditionary American military.” According to the researchers, “the less affluent are less likely to meet such requirements.”



"Rape Culture is Military Culture"  Pam Campos-palma

Pam Campos-Palma / Democracy Now - The top commander at Fort Hood is removed from his post, and the U.S. Army has launched an investigation, after a series of murders and accusations of sexual abuse at the base, with 23 deaths at Fort Hood this year and 13 soldiers disappeared, killed or who died by suicide. In April, the remains of soldier Vanessa Guillén were found near the base, and the main suspect in that case killed himsef in July shortly after he was accused of her murder. Her case sparked national outrage about sexual assault in the military and led to the introduction of legislation to make it easier for military personnel to report sexual assault and harassment. "Rape culture, systemic racism, corruption and impunity has been really part and parcel in the Department of Defense for decades," says Air Force veteran Pam Campos-Palma, who leads the Vets for the People project, adding that Congress must provide proper oversight of the military.



Sec. 516 expands the categories of student contact information that schools are required to release

Rick Jahnkow / Project YANO - The negotiated National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2021 that is now waiting for a final vote by Congress includes several provisions that would increase the military's intrusion into schools. The vote is imminent:

Sec. 516 expands the categories of student contact information that schools are required to release to recruiters to include e-mail addresses and cellphone numbers. It sets deadlines for schools to provide the requested information: within 60 days after the start of classes for the current semester or not later than 60 days after the date of a request (whichever is later). It would also require schools to provide information on students age 17 or older who drop out of school, including the reason why the student dropped out, if collected by the institution.

(There is no change in the current provisions allowing parents and students who are age 18 or older to opt out when schools release student contact information to military and college representatives.)

Sec. 547 would expand the Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps program with the following language:

(a) Expansion of JROTC Curriculum. -- Section 2031(a)(2) of title 10, United States Code, is amended by inserting after ``service to the United States'' the following: ``(including an introduction to service opportunities in military, national, and public service)''.

(b) Plan to Increase Number of JROTC Units.--The Secretary of Defense shall, in consultation with the Secretaries of the military departments, develop and implement a plan to establish and support not fewer than 6,000 units of the Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps by September 30, 2031.
Sec. 5516 would order the Department of Defense to study how to improve recruitment of women for active-duty assignments.

The entire 2021 NDAA bill is available by clicking the read more button:



Troops to teachers brings service from the battlefield to the classroom

Charlie Lapastora / Fox News -  "I try to push everything that was instilled in the military to my students, so it’ll help them not only in the classroom but later on in life,” said Frank Contreras, a 12-year Army veteran.

Frank Contreras, a 12-year Army veteran who retired as a sergeant, ran a team of five troops who worked in the communications department. But he recently decided on a career he said is just as heroic – and one he believes will have a lasting impact: teaching.


“The future of our nation rests in the education of our children,” Contreras said. “So, this is actually the battlefield of today…this is my service now.”

Contreras is part of a program that aims to bring veterans into the classroom – as teachers.

The Department of Defense recently gave a $735,513 grant to Arizona’s Department of Education for the Troops to Teachers program. The grant will provide the department of education a dedicated staff position and overhead for the program over the next five years.



The Danger of Asking Hard Questions

Todd Finley /  Edutopia - In a neighboring school district, a high school principal refused to allow students to dramatize the United States' military presence in Iraq. The topic, he asserted, was "too sensitive." Authorized classroom conversations and texts related to war tend to be removed by history or geography. The Diary of Anne Frank meets both criteria. Additionally, almost every passage is chillingly intimate, thus making it a popular, albeit still challenged, curricular choice.

Awkward classroom silences and rolled eyes accompany teachers who espouse opinions about war profiteering. The only safe places to discuss, write about, or dramatize war are where everyone agrees with everyone else, or where the instructor has created a climate of trust. Teachers who introduce discussions of contemporary military engagements by the United States risk community blowback. Anti-war talk can be perceived as unpatriotic. Talk radio still pillories Jane Fonda, not for ruining a generation of female knees with her videos on high impact aerobics, but for her anti-war views. The threat is real for teachers who risk asking questions.