Foolish things people say about ROTC, as high school ends

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Wilco, Jun 6, 2015.

  1. Wilco

    Wilco Member

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    I know other we have other threads on foolish things people say about academies and ROTC but as son’s senior year winds down, people keep talking. DS got AROTC scholarship on 2nd board and kept it pretty quiet. Now as more find out they feel free to share their foolish comments with us. We have our standard answers, but they don't even hear (thinking about their next comment.)
    In no particular order here are a few (remember these are parents not their children, for the most part). Add ones you or your child has heard.

    -I would never let my son do that, aren’t you afraid with all the wars and terrorist groups?

    -You thought you would miss him just going to college you’ll never see him in the military.

    -I thought he was smarter than that, why would you let him do that.

    -John/Tom/Bill could have gotten one of those but no one told him about it!

    -That’s how the military hooks the kids that can’t go to college otherwise.

    - West Point wanted my son to go there to play (fill in the blank for sport) (mind you we are in a very small class B, with few going on to play any college sport, let alone D-1-)

    From a minority we have heard:

    -That is fantastic, you must be so proud of him.

    -He always was a smart kid we knew he would do well.

    -Good head on his shoulders, he actually has a plan in place.

    -What a great opportunity, he will do well.
     
  2. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    It won't stop in high school. You will always get these reponses for the remainder of his military career.

    Always respond "I am extremely proud of my son."

    Good Luck to your son!
     
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  3. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

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    And that's why your son will soon find his place among the real 1%. All those comments sound like excuses for why their little Jimmy wouldn't step up and take the path less traveled. They'll sound like pity towards your son until he graduates and has Army Officer on his resume with a well paying full time job. You should continue to be proud of your son, receiving the scholarship is just the beginning of the pride you'll have in his future accomplishments. Thanks to him for his willingness to serve.

    On a separate note, comments like these continue to fuel the civilian-military divide that's a big topic right now.
     
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  4. Kronk

    Kronk Member

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    In my last few weeks I've received so many comments along the lines of "How many years do you have to do before you get to go to college and use that?"
    Ignorance is widespread to many on this subject. A number of the people assume it is the enlistment route I took and the scholarship money is the standard military amount.
    Though there have been a few that understand, and it is refreshing to hear their comments.
     
  5. SASIALO

    SASIALO Member

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    Ignorance abounds everywhere be it towards the military, police, clergy ... Even lawyers get a bad rap (I know it's hard to believe). Point is you can choose to educate or you can choose to say to each his own. You can choose to ignore or you can choose to chastise. I have done each and each has its place.
     
  6. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    While many comments can be misplaced......this one is not far from the truth.
     
  7. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    This is what we got when our DS got his AFROTC scholarship from parents that had children in AFJROTC and CAP and did not receive a scholarship:
    ~ 7 AFJROTC students applied 0 received a scholarship. 2 non-AFJROTC applied, both received a scholarship (Type 1 and 2).

    That was unfair they gave it to non AFJROTC students before AFJROTC students.

    To me personally by another parent it was because your DSs father is an O5 and that gave him an edge.
    ~ I bit my tongue and did not say to them no...it is because my kid was top 7% of his class, had a 33/34 ACT best sitting, and the ECs. The board had no clue Daddy was an O5.

    The positive side was the valedictorian's parents were sitting right behind us. She had been accepted to Duke, and had 100K merit...not alot for Duke, and less when you total ROTC scholarship. As the AF ALO read off their speech, which to be honest is recruiting for future students, the ALO announced their stats (cgpa, class rank, SAT, ECs, etc for each recipient + the worth of the scholarship and where they would be attending), I heard her father say to her mother, OMG these kids stats are amazing. They had no idea we were parents of one of the recipients until they saw Bullet and I kiss each other when our DS walked up to the stage.
    ~~ The father patted Bullet on the shoulder and said God Bless America.

    My very favorite though was how you can allow him to die for a scholarship?
     
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  8. USNAco2019hopeful

    USNAco2019hopeful Member

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    It also depends on WHO gets the scholarship. Last year my school had two kids get the AROTC scholarship. One kid kept having to hear "oh you're doing this because you couldn't get into college" and the other heard "you are America exemplified"; they were both very good and well deserving recipients so it wasn't like one of them was a bad person.
     
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  9. turtlerunnernc

    turtlerunnernc Member

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    DS won a 3 year AROTC scholarship. Thankfully all remarks have been positive so far.
     
  10. Falcon A

    Falcon A Member

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    Same here...all positive here in NoVa.

    The surprise, given we are in NoVa, was that DS was the only ROTC scholarship awarded and had no Service Academy appointments out of a graduating class of approximately 600 from a very competitive "IB" curriculum high school. Approximatel 35 are going to UVA and over 50 to VaTech
     
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  11. DJA

    DJA Member

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    My son's high school didn't announce any scholarship amounts or even mention those that received scholarships nor anything about GPA. They didn't even announce the schools they were going to although 100% were going to college and the colleges were listed by student in a handout. It was really a celebration of the entire class graduating and no attention was put on any particular student. They did have some individual awards like valedictorian, citizenship, etc. I liked the format. So, my son didn't want his 4 year AROTC scholarship announced and I can understand why.
     
  12. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Don't know if it varies with where you're at in the country or where your at in the cycle. DS commissioned in May. I was with him at his place of summer employment while he waits to start AD. He tends bar at a local craft brewery. It's pretty obvious to everyone he is at least military if not a Marine:
    1. the high and tight haircut
    2. the physique
    So it always comes up in conversation that he's the USMC's newest 2 LT. Nothing but congratulations and thanks all around from all the customers. Of course everyone had a couple beers in them, so....
     
  13. Falcon A

    Falcon A Member

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    Congrats!

    Tending Bar . . . Awesome

    Sounds like no better preparatory training prior to going active ;)
     
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  14. Kyguardmom

    Kyguardmom Member

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    Not too long ago, I was one of those people who was inclined to think negatively of ROTC/military, etc. That is, until my DS expressed interest in going ROTC. When my son and I visited the ROTC program at University of Kentucky, I was just blown away by the caliber of these young adults. My daughter attended UK in her freshman & sophomore years, so I've met my share of UK underclassmen. Millennials - bless their hearts. Absolutely no comparison to the young men and women in ROTC... their poise, their courtesy, their physical fitness....was just striking. Further research has only reinforced my initial impression.

    Really, I had NO idea.

    My son ended up enlisting in the Army National Guard with the intention of trying for SMP slot in ROTC. He just finished his junior year in HS and goes to BCT in a few weeks.
     
  15. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    That is no shocker to me, NoVa is insanely competitive. What always shocks me in this area is that they have no clue that VT is an SMC, and people than say why are they going to VT and not UVA?
    ~ Not bashing UVA, it is a public Ivy, typically top 3 in the nation.

    Just saying that they are bashing VT because they see it lower tier academically, and do not realize that many kids accepted to both institutions want to have both feet in...1 as a college kid, and the other experiencing more than ROTC.
    Than again in VA, VT and UVA have no love lost between the 2.

    Both are amazing schools, with amazing ROTC programs, but UVA is ROTC only, and VT is Corps. Both will turn out amazing officers, just different lifestyles for the next 4 years.
    ~ I think for AFROTC/NROTC scholarship parents they don't get it, because these branches will commission AD upon commissioning regardless of the program, whereas AROTC gets an edge for AD from what I understand by graduating from an SMC. Hence, VT is a better choice.
    ~~ No flaming, just saying that is what I have always understood to be true for priority/odds AD... USMA...SMC...AROTC.
    ~~~ Clarkson and Jcleppe will correct me.
     
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  16. MomWPgirl

    MomWPgirl Member

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    Comments in my circle have been mostly negative. 3 of my four kids chose the commissioned officer's path. (Mom and Dad are not military) Most of the comments involve "Why?" I have found it difficult to explain why my kids chose a path of service. With my first one, I would go into a lengthy explanation about the desire to be part of something bigger than themselves, etc etc. Now, after realizing no one seems to "get it" I simply say something like "Why not. If not them, Who?" Sadly, I find many of my friends and community know/care very little about our military. There is a huge disconnect.
     
  17. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I always say because freedom is not free!

    Just wait until they go AD, many people will say such things:
    This is not the right war.

    My reply has always been, there is no such thing as a right war. I usually will get a retort, that WWII was the right war, and I than say, Yes, but the only reason war exists is because diplomacy failed.

    OBTW, believe it or not my MIL loved bragging that her DS was in the AF flying fighters, but when it came to actually doing what he was trained to do, she was the 1st one to say this is not the right war. Heard it for Gulf I, and II, also heard it when he was about to jump into Haiti, and fly over Kosovo.

    Was also at a Thanksgiving dinner with my best friends family. Her BIL at the dinner table in their home had the guts to call him a war monger to his face. Awkward. Silence was what occurred for the rest of the night.

    There are people in the world that wants their freedom, but not what may have to occur to give the same freedom to others not living in our country. I always wonder if the roles were reversed and our country was being oppressed how far would they want other countries to go to liberate our country.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2015
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  18. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    These "touch points" are a great time to help educate the civilian population and expose them to another way of viewing the world. Its OK to be shocked, amused, even irritated ... but consider taking the time to help people understand.
     
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  19. VB DAD

    VB DAD Member

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    Having read all the post above it’s like there are two worlds in this great country of ours. I can only say that in the past 5 years as parents we have received positive views on this subject. Once and only once has a person spoken negatively, a neighbor at a party we held, my son had sold his soul to the devil for 30 pieces of silver, I asked if she felt the same way about her husband as he had attended the Naval Academy and since retired, she nearly choked on her olive.

    My son is now at BLOC. In the next four years he will be promoted given a pay rise and receive various benefits and allowance. In 2019 it will be do I stay or blow smoke, a review of his 2011 HS year book will reveal the train wrecks along with the guys and gals that made something of thier lifes, thankful he will be a maker not a breaker.
     
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  20. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    Grunt you are spot on. The civilian-military divide exists. The military does not always do a great job either of closing this gap. I work at a company that supports the military and really tries to hire Vets, but even then we are very small in numbers. I always take time to explain or answer questions when I am asked. If that is their only interaction with a military member or vet, I want it to be a positive one. The military is a very isolating world. Large bases, fenced off from populations, military mostly socialize with other military members. Heck on most large bases you could never leave or rarely leave and get along fine. The fact of the matter is most people just don't know. As a Marine who went to the Naval Academy do you know how many times I heard, "So you went to a Navy school and became Marine how did that happen?" Most do not know the Marine Corps is a part of the Dept of Navy. Sometimes I get asked horrible questions like, "Did you kill anyone?" I refuse to answer this question, but I am polite about it and don't go nuts. These questions will never end for a military member, even when they return to the civilian world. Everyone can choose how they want to deal with these questions or comments from uninformed, ignorant or simply rude people, but I personally believe its a military members responsibility to help close the civilian-military gap and not further it.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2015

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