Editor, Daily Nexus,
I was dismayed to read about the possibility of banning ROTC from this campus (“UCSB Senate Calls for ROTC Review,” Daily Nexus, Feb. 14). If you disagree with the policies that the Dept. of Defense sets forth, then, hey, you can, and should, voice your opinion in other forums. Barring ROTC isn’t the proper way to go. Getting rid of ROTC solves nothing and it only hurts those individuals who seek to serve as officers in our military. Thomas Scheff’s comments about “uphold[ing] the manliness of fighting” further emphasizes that he’s taking this battle down the wrong venue. First of all, to suggest that the military uses this concept to lure unsuspecting students is an insult, both to the military and to those who join.
We are adults and college students, and are fully aware of the ramifications of a commission and active duty service. Secondly, the military promotes a variety of positive values that have nothing to do with fighting. Yes, army recruits are ultimately trained to fight wars, but we get so much more out of it than that. Discipline, teamwork, pride, personal achievement, fulfillment and leadership – these aren’t just abstract concepts from a brochure.
My time in ROTC and on active duty have provided me with a lot of valuable experience and I’m glad I had the opportunity to choose to join. To Scheff and his supporters: Please don’t deny others this same opportunity just because you have political views that should be addressed elsewhere. It isn’t fair to make our potential future officers pay for it – you’ll just be shooting the messenger otherwise.