Gary Wright II - Gary-Wright.comGary Wright II

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Social Commentary from the C-Suite to Main Street℠

A Blog by Gary Wright II

Why Berkeley Must Stand Fast - Say F*** You to military!

Saturday, February 9th, 2008

Why Berkeley Must Stand Fast

I previously blogged about an Ivy League college that caved in due to pressure from the federal government. Their principle was very simple: If you going to discriminate and aren't willing to accept ALL of our students, then you don't deserve access to ANY of our students. The disagreement was fueled by the failed Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy which the US military uses to discriminate against gays and lesbians. The US government eventually used the "Solomon amendment" to force open the doors and allow military recruiters free access to the campus, or the government would take away over $300,000,000 in federal funding. I was disappointed when the college gave up their integrity for such a small amount of money. I say "a small amount of money",because an Ivy League school could have easily replaced that money from alumni and other activists.

Recently, Berkeley (California), told the Marine recruiters that they are no longer welcome in the city. The Berkeley City Council passed a measure urging the military recruiters to leave their downtown offices. A group of protesters set up camp across the street from the recruiting office, which eerily reminds me of the scenes at the University of California-Berkeley where students organized large protests of the Vietnam War.

What was the response from the federal government? Republicans in Washington are going to reroute over $2,000,000 of federal funding already earmarked for the city, in addition to the money that had been designated for the University of California-Berkeley.

The US government has a very long history of recruiting talented youth, and then throwing them out into the cold after they are exhausted and unfit for employment due to the combat mentality that is deeply instilled into them. There are also horrible effects that Post-traumatic Stress Disorder has on them. They are not easily accepted back into mainstream society, because our government spends trillions of dollars turning a young person into the ultimate killing machine. The government teaches them how to kill, but they never show them how not to kill before releasing them back into society.

The way our veterans are treated is despicable, and until the system is fixed, I would tell anyone even thinking about joining the service to reconsider. Mandatory reading should be "Johnny's Got His Gun" by Dalton Trumbo. Our government has actually banned this book during other times of war.

I congratulate the students and citizens who are protesting at Berkeley. I hope they don't sell their soul for only two million dollars.

Am I just a peace advocate? No, I am a disabled veteran. I'm not just expressing my opinion, I am telling it like it is! If any of you out there disbelieve me, you are welcome to join me on my next monthly visit to the Atlanta VA hospital.

Best regards,

-- Gary Wright II

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