Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The New GI Bill

If there is one good thing that can be said from the Global War on Terror. It's brought almost unparrelled attention to the life of a soldier (or marine if you're a Jarhead). Some of this attention is unflattering, the recent youtube video of a marine throwing a puppy for example, and the "masaqure" at Haditha (which I honestly think was a "fog of war" incident and should NOT be compared to My Lai). And of course who could forget Abu Graib.

But it has also brought attention to some of the problems facing soldiers sailors arimen and marines. Namely concerns like Equipment, College, Living conditions, Deployment lengths, and a host of other issues that face soldiers all the time. The amazing thing is that people actually care! One would think that since this is an unpopular war (like Vietnam) and organizations like BOTH NOW and Code: Pink have sprung up (eerily similar to the Vietnam war protests) people would noth only tunr a blind eve to the plight of soldiers but they would also go the other way and hate the very people that defend them.

Strangely though some sectors have done this, for the most part, people do not turn against the soldiers. If anything there seems to be MORE support now than there was before. A recen YouTube video showing how bad the Baraks were at some posts recieved imeadiate responses and massive renovation projects spang up almost overnight. Other examples like "Operation Homefront" and "soldier's angels" provide support in ways that are frankly overwhelming (belive me i know)

Recently Congress started passing a serries of measures that will increase the curent GI Bill to the point where an SM can almos do the full 4 years, and also recieve a small stipend for living expenses. This is absolutly astounding as the current GI Bill is such that it covers 36 months of school and about 75% of baisic college. Most folks have to go into loas or other jobs to make up the expense, but not nearly as badly as some civillians do.

My personal feelings on this matter are such that going to college seems a little easier. Part of me thinks that most of the measure will be defeated, after all where is the money going to come from? But it seems like there is hope after all. Hope for my future. If I want to get out and get an education that option is there! Is there any gift I could ask for that would be better recieved?

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