General Question

okc405's avatar

Why aren't you serving?

Asked by okc405 (255points) March 23rd, 2008

They’re a lot of people, civilians mind you, that are gung-ho for the war in Iraq and bussin up some muslims. But are living their lives and not trying to contribute. My theory is that some citizens are treating this as a sports event. U.S. vs The Middle East and they just want thier home team to win not realizing the effects of war. So I ask, If you are in support of the war why aren’t you serving?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

37 Answers

oneye1's avatar

This is a fight I will leave to others on fluther

trainerboy's avatar

I am in support of police officers also. I would call them if I see a crime committed. I am not a police officer though. Should I not call police? They put their lives on the line everyday also.

okc405's avatar

@trainerboy if someone you were close to was being attacked wouldn’t you stand up and attempt to protect them knowing you could be injured or killed? There are alot of patriots in this country that are screaming their love for their country but haven’t even thought twice of heading to a recruiters office. I just want to know how can someone be in support of a war they aren’t willing to fight themselves?

trainerboy's avatar

Yes I would, but I would also call the police. I would call the police if armed gunmen were in my neighbors house and would probably not attempt to go in myself unarmed. I guess, using your logic, I should not ask the police to do something I am not willing to do, or when the police arrive, go in with them. I believe they would not want that. Should we all become police officers to make sure that if something happens we don’t ask someone to go somewhere unless we go also?
I believe you are trying to paint as hypocritical anyone who supports the war but is not in the military or in Iraq. So it really does not matter what someone answers, does it.

oneye1's avatar

I am fighting the war I support the troops (heroes)fighting for my freedom I sent over 1000chapsticks two weeks ago

oneye1's avatar

and if we would all come together as one people and tell our government to stop fighting each other and just give our troops whatever they need to win then maybe we could start to bring home our son,daughter ,brothers,sisters,fathers,mothers

okc405's avatar

@trainerboy, this was gotten awkward, i’m not trying to make anyone out to be a hypocrite. I don’t know anybody on fluther except for hairypalms, so your image really means very little to me. But theyre are things that I know, the Army is desperate for troops. The public knows this. I just want to know why aren’t more people signing up for a tour to be a good patriot if they feel that the war in Iraq is a just cause. Support of troops is one things but to be willing to die for your country is another. I’m straying for my original question. If you aren’t fighting, why?

mcw's avatar

I’m part of “Operation Stand by my Man.” Military wife here. Quite the job as well if I do say so myself.

oneye1's avatar

thank you mama for your service to my freedom

Poser's avatar

I don’t support the war and I’m serving. Does that make me a hypocrite?

ccatron's avatar

@okc405 – some of us are not “built for battle” and would not survive very long. Also, our economy, which is already in trouble, would suffer without workers. I think it takes a special type of person to serve in the military. Sure, there’s training that goes with it, but some people, like myself, would probably cause more harm than good.

hairypalm's avatar

ummm I work with ya okc… I got your back!

Bsilver's avatar

This question is ridiculous. What’s been said hold true, but you need to look at it in a different way. There are many people who are serving, that don’t support the war, like poser, do you think they should quit? Half of Americans couldn’t even pass the mental and physical requirements needed to enlist, and beyond that, some never make it out of basic training. Just because you’re not holding a gun on the front line, doesn’t mean you aren’t doing what you can to preserve the way of life we take for granted. Stop belittling the efforts of everyday citizens, and quit the war mongering.

And another thing, how can you ask people to defend their position, when you don’t tell us yours? What are you doing that’s so important?

cwilbur's avatar

I don’t support the war and I’m not serving.

(The military wouldn’t accept me anyway.)

okc405's avatar

I never asked anyone to defend their position. I was just asking for members to post their reasons of not signing up to fight a war they believe in, you say its ridiculous, but I feel that is a completely ligitimate question. Don’t place blame on me if you’re scared, or too comfortable that’s your problem not mine if you don’t want to answer why…. dont. Either way its still a war going on and you’re not fighting it. If poser wanted to quit he couldn’t…. he enlisted, he signed a contract to the government to work for a set amount of time and only certain situations can relieve him of that burden. he has a job to do when he is ordered. His opinion of what the armed forces should or shouldn’t do doesn’t matter. I enlisted and im serving now, that’s what im doing that is so important. I don’t support a war that wasn’t approved by congress. My job is to support and defend the constitution of the united states and this war is unconstitutional. Some people don’t realize that wmd’s were never found and only circumstantial evidence shows that iraq has any ties to radical terrorist groups. I’m not going to feel bad for somebody that can’t pass low standards of mental and physical capability. Im just concerned witht the fact that because everything that is happening in iraq is televised and that seperates people from the grim realities of armed combat. Im not a war monger I believe in peaceful resolutions, I joined to serve a purpose of educational benefits for the betterment of my family, I wouldn’t call myself a patriot but my emotional ties have nothing to do with me doing a job. Bumper stickers and t-shirts don’t fight wars, we do.

trainerboy's avatar

The problem with the question, to me is that it implies if somebody is not in the military, they shouldn’t support the war. So in a sense, it seems like a set up.
I do not support this war. I feel it was a mistake to go in. I am not even of the camp that says Bush lied. I just felt it would become something like what it has become, a lot of money, nation building, which Bush said he would not do, so in that sense he did lie, and basically telling a country that they have to embrace democracy.
However, to suggest, which your question does, that those who support the war should be over in Iraq, bascially, to me anyway, sets them up to invalidate their opinions.
I do have family in the military, some who went to Iraq. I supported the Afghan invasion, yet did not sign up, wasn’t asked to and my age would probably prohibit it.
I do believe you ask a sincere question, but it is stated in a way that seems to set people up to look bad.

Bsilver's avatar

@ okc- thank you for serving, I did not mean my response to sound as harsh as it did, given what you have now explained it to be, but as trainer pointed out, you formed the original question to be a completely loaded question. I have the utmost respect for those that do serve. I will agree with the sentiment that this war is unconstitutional, and we should have left long ago, but the situation is what it is, and without more people raising their voices, nothing will change that.

As for me, I don’t support the war, and don’t plan on serving. I admit, it sounds like a very interesting career path, but not one for me, I’d prefer to help by trying to change things here, social work, or policy reform. My way of making a difference also changes lives for the better, but I don’t think I’m cut out for carrying a gun or even posssibly killing someone, even if it’s a case of self defense.

okc405's avatar

My question does not intend to set anyone up. Pure curiousity on why people who support the war aren’t signing up if their army needs them too. Stop-loss isn’t just a mtv special its REAL. Our country needs soldiers and if your support of the war is true why aren’t more people enlisting? I understand that their are situations and age requirments that wouldn’t make life hard to live by enlisting in the military, but there are many able bodied men and women who can. Who can you cheer people off to possible death when your safe in your suburban communties? “Yeah, go to iraq with underfunded bases and posts and live without your family for extended periods of time and get shot at and bombed while I hang out here and argue about traffic and obama’s preacher” trainerboy, all of these statements don’t apply to you. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but all I asked is why? If someone is ashamed or embarrased that their reason isn’t “valid” that’s their problem not mine and if they don’t want anyone to know their business they can keep it to themselves…. so back to my original question… If you support Operation Iraqi Freedom what are your reasons for not enlisting? Mind you that the army needs soldiers and there have been 4000 american troops to die in the AOR.

trainerboy's avatar

As I stated, I get your intent was not to set people up, the question itself tends to go that way.
I get you are sincerely asking and I will bow out from here and let others answer.

okc405's avatar

@bsilver, if you don’t support the war my question was never intended for you in the first place, but thank you for your input, all discussion is good discussion. and also thank you for trying to make this country a more perfect union.

glial's avatar

Simply put, I’m a lot closer to 40 than 20. Have a couple of health issues.

More honestly, soldiering is not what I do. I fully support the troops, have friends in all areas of the military, including a WWII veteran father.

I’m not a soldier, but a admire and appreciate those who are.

hossman's avatar

okc, I suspect a lot of it has to do with a paradigm shift in how the American public views military service.

Until the Cold War, the U.S. military throughout its history consisted of a VERY small professional military. In times of war, it was supplemented by a substantial volunteer effort, and in extreme necessity, through a draft of the citizenry.

Today, we have a much larger professional military. The military is considered a professional occupation or calling to a much greater degree. As we are no longer reliant upon a draft or a large force volunteering for a specific conflict, the public has come to no longer view voluntary service as a civil obligation, and believes our professional standing military can handle the job. Military service is seen as the purview of those who make it a career choice, rather than inspired by a civic duty or patriotism. We leave it to the professionals.

Not to say this is right, but it is similar to how government entitlements have come to replace the family duties of fathers in much of our society, and also how many Americans have come to view the payment of their taxes as fulfilling their philanthropy and service to their community. Once you create a layer of bureaucracy, the public views themselves to be relieved of the obligation.

okc405's avatar

You are trying to make it okay for the american public to seperate themselves with international violence. I’m not here to judge but to inquire and probe within the thoughts of fluther patrons. Now that is said i want people to be honest with their convictions, and if they aren’t why? I wasn’t asking “If you don’t support the war, why are you in the millitary?” I asked “If you DO support the war, why aren’t you in the military” My question has nothing to do with the reasons why people join the military. I want to know why people don’t. I don’t think you are giving the public enough smarts to understand simple ideas…. i.e. my country is at war and needs my help. My country’s army is spread thin and needs soldiers. I’m sure some people are a little salty about my question, but this is how i feel. If you feel bad that you support a war you are not willing to fight, that is your problem. That’s something you have to deal with. I don’t want to offend anyone or defend my views because this wasn’t the original intent of my question. I’ve probably got 3 satisfactory answers out of the 23 responses. That presents a problem that people feel bad about their onwn behaviors and are disgusted that I have brought it up.

hossman's avatar

okc, you certainly only read the parts you want to, don’t you. You say that I’m “trying to make it okay.” Where did I say that? Where did I indicate approval? Can you cite to any attempt to justify such behavior? In fact, I said “not to say this is right,” implying my disapproval.

My answer did indeed address EXACTLY the question you asked (I’m presuming you meant Americans, and not me as an individual). I gave you a reason why many Americans are not serving, even though they support the war. I said nothing about why people do join.

Myself, I’d have volunteered, except I am too old, too fat, too diabetic, and have 3 kids. My brother is currently serving in Baghdad. My older brother is too old. My father served. Both of my grandfathers served. All of my great-grandfathers served.

You keep saying we aren’t answering your question or we didn’t understand your question. My perception of this thread is that you willfully or unintentionally are failing to listen to our answers.

Perhaps you should examine your own arrogance. Where do you presume that I “feel bad that you support a war you are not willing to fight, that is your problem.” How do you know what I think and feel? I think YOU are projecting your own problems on the rest of us. Where do you find the moral superiority to state this is something “I have to deal with?” Those here who know me personally know I would serve if serving was possible for me. You say you don’t want to offend anyone, but that is what you are doing. You don’t get to tell us what we do or don’t have to deal with.

And after attacking us, you most cowardly say you don’t want to “defend my views.” Let me clarify for you this forum, and this country in general. If you want to play offense, you’ve got to be prepared to play some defense, too. If you can’t defend your views, or can’t be bothered to defend them, then why on earth should we bother to give them any value when you do not?

Where do you have the arrogance to complain “I’ve probably got 3 satisfactory answers?” Perhaps, O Mighty Master, we could better serve your every whim if you disclosed up front what answers you might deign to deem acceptable, then we could all hasten to heed your every desire.

If you don’t feel bad about your own behavior, you should. It is ill mannered, and ill conceived. You haven’t listened to anyone here, merely whined because we didn’t agree with you. We aren’t disgusted that you brought it up, or we wouldn’t bother to respond. I myself am certainly disgusted that you start a conversation, we give you our time free of charge, and you just dump all over it because it doesn’t meet your preconceptions. If you want to assert your right to speech, you’ll just have to oblige us as well.

hossman's avatar

And may I point out that many Americans ARE volunteering for active duty in war zones. My brother could have stayed here with his reserve unit. Instead he volunteered and retrained for a unit that he knew was immediately shipping out to go to Baghdad to dismantle bombs. He did so because he felt it to be his patriotic duty. If I was not married and had children, and if the armed forces would take me, which they won’t, I would be there myself.

hossman's avatar

May I also point out that your use of the phrase “bussin up some muslims” is also offensive? I doubt that is how the majority of the American public or the American military feels, in fact, many of us are there to PROTECT some Muslims. That statement alone reflects more about you than anyone else.

okc405's avatar

perhaps to my youth I don’t have the patience, or the delicousness of my supply of capri sun is distracting me but I apologize that I didn’t rebutt all of your arguments, i admit I was wrong in thinking that you approved of this behavior, misread…. But I feel that the there are plenty of able bodied and able minded men and women in this country that support the war, no statistics just a product of my observation. if someone feels bad about not helping and that the war in Iraq is justified, there’s little I can do, I’m not a counselor to help someone through their feelings. I am a troop and many other troops dont understand the conflict or know when it will end. and satisfactory answers are those that answer my question… Example: Person1-Is it going to rain Thursday? Person2-The yankees play on Thursday. Unsatisfactory answer. It did not answer the question. My opinion in the matter is irrelavant in a person’s reason(s) for not serving in a war they support. I wanted to know why. I see that you are an individual that is proficient in expressing ideas. But you are missing my point. The first response to my question was defensive, i didn’t ask for that. Your response feeds to the idea that everyone agrees with you. your use of the words US and WE as if you have the moral authority to speak for the people. Many people because of the situations in current events hate and wish to cause harm to people of the muslim faith. many military commanders preach this rehtoric to their troops. I asked a question and you could have simplied satisfied the question with “too old, too fat and too diabetic.” but I get my integrity as a man and bravery questioned.

hossman's avatar

Yes, indeed you do, when you ask but do not listen, when you seek input but then insult the cooperation of others when you disparage their response as unsatisfactory.

I do not suggest people agree with me, but I do suggest I can make broad conclusions about some Americans from my observations of their statements, conduct, and my attention to their responses to research.

And you discredit both our country and our services by suggesting that many of them wish to cause harm to “people of the muslim faith.” Are they not there preventing Muslims from killing each other? Who has killed more Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan, Muslims or Americans? We are there protecting Muslims every day. Even before these wars, American hegemony has inherently protected many people of all faiths from people of all faiths, including their own. To paraphrase the Bible, what greater love has any man than he lays down his life for another? Regardless of how you feel about the war politically, there are Americans throughout the world daily placing their lives at risk for the betterment of mankind. It doesn’t matter, on this issue, why our government has us there, you are asking about the people, and throughout recent history, America has cared enough about the rest of the world to lay down their lives for freedom. What other country has done so in such numbers, when their own territory was not directly threatened? I am tired of so many people condemning America while they benefit from the peace that America has purchased with its hard work and lives. The “Pax Americana” has lasted longer and benefited more people than the “Pax Romana.” Certainly both have had their flaws, but it is far too easy to point fingers when others have died to give you the freedom to criticize their sacrifice.

You said you didn’t want to “defend your views.” Then why expect us to defend ours from you? If you don’t want to engage us fairly in discussion, then why start one? What amazes me is that you cannot see: 1) your ingratitude to the posters above; 2) the hypocrisy in running in here with provocative statements, then claiming it is our problem, then claiming WE are attacking you; and 3) the only one here who has said anything offensive about Muslims is you. Your question here has been answered fairly and directly several times, you simply do not see it, and if you cannot, I doubt you can be persuaded to do so. You are the only one here that says anyone feels bad about not helping in Iraq. Your error is that you confuse the statement you have phrased as a question with actually seeking information.

I’m not being defensive, I find I have nothing here to defend. I am trying to make you see you have been offensive and ill-mannered. I actually think you have been engaging in a bit of taqiyaa here.

I see at least 8 different good answers to your question above, not counting my own posts. What seems to be your position, whether you intended to assert it or not, is that if an American who qualifies to enlist does not enlist, they either don’t support the war or in some manner their patriotism is questioned. That would be like asserting if you are not a priest you are somehow less Catholic.

Bsilver's avatar

hey, here’s a thought, how about you two agree to disagree, I’m all for intelligent discussion, and I will admit, I took the question the wrong way at first, but I saw I was wrong and apologized, but now it’s getting out of hand.

hossman's avatar

When someone is offensive or unfair, I certainly will bring it to their attention. I believe you and other posters were not treated fairly or respectfully, and that is the source of my statement. I question the tenor of okc’s conduct, I do not know him well enough to have a problem with him. I accept another’s conduct as an indication of how they wish to be treated. okc indicated other posts were not satisfactory, I have indicated in what manner I find his own posts to be unsatisfactory. Agreeing to disagree does not mean accepting disagreeability.

hossman's avatar

I do, however, accept that the accusatory tone of okc’s question and some of his subsequent posts may be unintentional, but then okc needs such feedback to know that he can craft his rhetoric more artfully.

hossman's avatar

I can see okc is crafting a response, has been doing so for quite some time, and I don’t know whether this is his crafting time or my slow computer, but I must to bed RIGHT now, and doubt I will have time until next week to come back, so I apologize to okc in advance for leaving him hanging and not being able to respond.

okc405's avatar

What seems to be your position, whether you intended to assert it or not, is that if an American who qualifies to enlist does not enlist, they either don’t support the war or in some manner their patriotism is questioned.

My position here is not to judge and patriotism to me is on the same level as love a youth feels for his streetgang, all emotions and I try to distance myself from those things. I AM NOT A PATRIOT. I AM AN AMERICAN TROOP WHO IS POSING A QUESTION TO AN AUDIENCE. When I asked this I expected answers, not questions of my character and my stance on the issue. Those factors simply do not matter. Why would someone post a question to a question, if the prior stated question is clear? My “tone” is a product of your perspection, I can’t help that. You are digging too deep and attacking me instead of the question. hoss this was started because of simple misunderstanding on both parts and I vote to end it and re-open the floor to answer the question at hand.

hossman's avatar

Whoops, okc came up just as I was powering down.

In response: OK.

cwilbur's avatar

If an American who qualifies to enlist but does not is a vocal advocate of the war, I’d question just how strongly he supports it. If you’re loudly in favor of sending other people to risk their lives when you’re not willing to do the same, I’m willing to loudly ask why you aren’t putting your money where your mouth is.

Maybe the answer to that is that you’re doing something more valuable or important, at least in your eyes. Maybe the answer is that it’s easy to support military action when you’re not the one being shot at and when all the people who are being shot at volunteered for military service.

hossman's avatar

Maybe the answer to that is that you’d be really bad at the job. Maybe the answer is that you ARE doing something just as valuable or important, not just in your own eyes. I can think of a number of occupations that I wouldn’t want to see anyone leave in order to go serve.

I do agree, however, that if you are qualified to enlist, enlisting is a powerful way to affirm your commitment to your position. I do not agree that NOT enlisting is necessarily a sign of hypocrisy or a lack of commitment.

I know a lot of “peace” advocates who have done nothing to advance peace. I know a lot of “religious” people who have done nothing to advance their faith. I know a lot of “liberal” people who have anything but a “liberal” attitude toward other viewpoints, a lot of “tolerant” people who are intolerant of those who disagree with them, and a lot of “conservative” people who secretly live lives that are anything but conservative.

As I look back now, I regret I did not serve previously, despite the Navy’s best efforts to recruit me, and my family’s military background. I can only say that at that time I held a lot of views diametrically opposed to my current views, and the only conflicts that happened when I was young enough to enlist did not last very long. I did, however, serve the taxpayers in government, and I have done my best to try to make the legal world a more sane and rational place. I now try to make the world a better place, one teenage mind at a time.

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther