Peaceful Careers Website
Peaceful Career Alternatives is an informational resource for youth with limited life options.

 

Militarization of our Schools

The Pentagon is taking over our poorer public schools.
This is the new reality for our disadvantaged youth.

 

 

What we can do

Corporate/conservative alliances threaten Democracy  .
Progressives have an important role to play.

 

Why does NNOMY matter?

Most are blind or indifferent to the problem.
A few strive to protect our democracy.

Before You Enlist (2018)

Straight talk from soldiers, veterans and their family members tells what is missing
from the sales pitches presented by recruiters and the military's marketing efforts.

 

Before You Enlist! (2018) from Telequest, Inc. on Vimeo.

  ¡Antes de alistarse! (2018)

¡Antes de alistarse! (2018) from Telequest, Inc. on Vimeo.

 
Las palabras directas de los soldados, veteranos y sus familiares dicen todo lo que falta y se oculta
en los argumentos promocionales presentados por los reclutadores y en los esfuerzos de marketing de los militares.

 

Why We Still Need a Movement to Keep Youth From Joining the Military

Elizabeth King /Article Originally appeared in In These Times web edition in June 2019 -

A scrappy counter-recruitment movement is trying to starve the military of labor.

Out of the spotlight, dedicated counter-recruiters around the country are steadfast in their organizing to cut off the human supply chain to the U.S. military.

­Eighteen is the youngest age at which someone can join the U.S. military without their parents’ permission, yet the military markets itself to—which is to say recruits—children at much younger ages. This is in part accomplished by military recruiters who visit high schools around the country, recruiting children during career fairs and often setting up recruitment tables in cafeteri­as and hallways. As a result, most students in the U.S. will meet a military recruiter for the first time at just 17 years old, and children are getting exposed to military propaganda younger and younger.

The recruitment of young people to the military is as old as the military itself, and has become more and more normalized along with the general militarization of schools. According to the Urban Institute, more than two-thirds of public high school students attend schools where there are “school resource officers,” a name for school-based police. This police presences comes on top of the role of military recruiters on campuses, or at college and career fairs. 

America's Heroes are always those who are expendable

Gary Ghirardi – OpEd – June 2020

Soldiers and Airmen from the Massachusetts National Guard gather together prior to completing COVID-19 testing on residents at the Alliance at West Acres nursing home, Brockton, Mass., April 10, 2020. Twelve medical teams are activated throughout the state and are conducting COVID-19 testing at medical facilities and nursing homes with high-risk populations. Homes and providers are identified by the Department of Public Health and Human Services for testing. This mission is one of several operations across the commonwealth in support of coronavirus response efforts. (Capt. Bonnie Blakely)Back in May of 2020, I caught an interview on Pacifica's KPFK radio on a morning program where a young woman was explaining the loss of her aunt that was a nurse engaging patients with the Coronavirus. She recounted her aunt telling her that she was not provided with masks or gloves and that a patient had sneezed in her face a week prior to her falling ill. All this culminated with a Zoom meeting with the family saying goodbye before she died. Later that day I passed a local hospital that had placed a large banner on the street honoring our heroes that were fighting the current epidemic.

In my work for The National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth, I am constantly reminded of a similar refrain from those pushing back against our work of getting youth, with limited opportunities for their futures, to consider all the ramifications of serving in the United State's post 9/11 military. That push-back always invokes the heroic diatribes defending those who serve in our military branches and a forceful reminder of how dare we try to diminish the sacrifice of heroes who have served or are considering serving by revealing the harmful realities of military service. Of course we do not diminish their service but try to put it in context to a fuller and more accurate disclosure of what military recruiters manage to leave out of their enlistment appeals. The relationship between these two scenarios, and the contradictions inherent in both, stayed with me all week and encouraged this short OpEd.

ALERT: POTENTIAL EXPANSION OF HIGH SCHOOL MILITARISM

Indiana JROTC Cadets compete in the first State Raider Championship. (Capt. Jesse Bien/Army) Image: DOD

 

Rick Jahnkow / Demilitarize Our Schools -

Legislation has recently been suggested that, among other things, would greatly expand the number of JROTC units and make military recruiting a more explicit, formal part of the program's stated purpose. It's part of the Inspired to Serve Act of 2020, which is being proposed by the National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service (NCMNPS). Below is the JROTC-related language (the commission is also recommending draft registration for women):

SEC. 304. EXPANSION OF JUNIOR RESERVE OFFICERS’ TRAINING CORPS PROGRAM

(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, in consultation with the Secretaries of the military departments (as defined in section 102 of title 5, United States Code), shall develop and implement a plan to establish and support not less than 6,000 units of the Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps by September 30, 2031.

(c) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.—There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary to carry out this section.

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