Editor, Daily Nexus,
I’ve been accused of being a whiny activist on more than one occasion in my life, but recently, thanks to the general UCSB population, I didn’t feel so alone. Just ask students who walked past the ROTC recruiting station set up in the Arbor a while ago.
For those who didn’t see it, ROTC brought a black Hummer vehicle, fully loaded with flat screen TVs, an Xbox system and two massive subwoofers. While football played on the TV sets – presumably a re-airing of the Super Bowl – several men threw around a Frisbee accompanied by the Top 40s music that blasted with overpowering bass all afternoon. The decked-out Hummer, painted with the yellow and white block lettering used in army recruitment ads, really topped off the scenario for some passersby.
Students on their way to class rolled their eyes. Few people actually approached the tables. One student punched his friend on the shoulder, jokingly adding: “Yeah army! Wanna go shoot someone?” His friend joined in, “Wanna kill someone in another country?” Another student asked: “Don’t we not have enough Humvees in Iraq, but we’ve got one here with an Xbox? … We’re talking about global warming these days and he’s driving a Hummer!”
These students were responding to the incongruity of showing video games and football to try to sell a career of military service. Hey guys, in fact, you’ll be doing the exact opposite of relaxing, playing video games and watching TV. I was so relieved to hear that other students, not just activists, thought that this sales pitch was absurd. So next time you accuse me of being whiny and humorless, just remember the Hummer at the recruitment table. I thought it was a hoot, and I don’t think I’m alone on this one.