Bill O'Reilly: OK for terrorists to attack San Francisco

Discussion in 'Political Discussions' started by DesElms, Nov 12, 2005.

  1. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    A lot of city kids will never know about the opportunities offered by the military if the recruiters aren't allowed to visit their schools. This may come as a shock to many, but there are a lot of households out there with no cable TV and no Internet service. No phone service, for that matter, except to dial 911 (even if phone service is cut-off, any phone jack will dial 911 if you plug-in a phone, leading many people to call 911 to ask us to call them a cab or order them a pizza. Really.). Most of these kids, if not all, don't even know where the local recruiting station is located (I've asked).

    For many of these kids, their life choices are;

    1) Dealing drugs, and doing the associated prison time.
    2) Working a menial, dead-end, minimum-wage job.
    3) Join the military.

    It seems to me that #3 is an awfully attractive choice, considering the other 2 options.
  2. DaveHayden

    DaveHayden New Member

    Does having a recruiter come on campus mean kids are pressured? I would think not. Could it happen in rare cases? Possibly but it seems rather unlikely. If kids don't see the recruiter they may not even seriously consider the option and as Bruce points out miss a very positive option. Now if any Recruiters are abusing the priviledge it would seem rather easy to deal with, but again I seriously doubt that is even happening.
  3. Tom57

    Tom57 Member

    Think again. Military recruiters are high pressure salesmen (and women). They have quotas to fill and they know that their best return lies in inner city schools - precisely for the reasons that Bruce outlines. Isn't it interesting that suburban kids don't offer the same payoff to the military. Contrary to popular stereotypes, not all inner city kids are destined to a life of hopelessness, crimes and drugs. More and more, academic options are opening up to them, so that it doesn't boil down to a choice between early death and the military. When it does come to such a decision, I think most of us would agree that this is not the best way to make career decisions.

    There are plenty of other ways for kids to find out about the military. Recruiters frequent clubs, malls, and many other places where young people hang out. A bigger problem in the inner city schools is having enough qualified counselers WITHIN the school to let students know about their options for COLLEGE. Many inner city students graduate without ever hearing that college may even be a possibility. Maybe if that side of the equation balances out, then the military option can be put into proper perspective - just as it is now for suburban kids.
  4. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    You obviously haven't been to the places I've worked.

    I'm not a big fan of racist conspiracy theories, but the military is one place that's truly color-blind. Do your job, attain the promotion points, and you get promoted. Some of the finest soldiers I ever served with were minorities, and they would be the first to tell you that the Army salvaged their lives from the despair of their childhood.
  5. se94583

    se94583 New Member

    Let's face it: the Bay Area is the safest place to be, as the terrorists would not want to blow up their friends!

    I'm more worried about Yahweh striking back.....
  6. DesElms

    DesElms New Member

    Oy. :rolleyes:

    Witty retorts which I resisted:
    • You mean like Reagan believed Yahweh did with AIDS?
    • So, then, se94583... will you be wanting your username changed to "Pat Robertson?"
    Okay, okay... that's enough. ;)
  7. Tom57

    Tom57 Member

    I live, work, and teach in East Oakland, which is about as inner city as you can get.

    As I said, let's balance the rest of the equation, and then we can talk about whether military recruiters on campus is a good idea. I have no doubt that you met and worked with many fine minority soldiers. That's not the point. Unfortunately, we can't talk with the ones who have died in the military. Bruce, you've got a little survivorship bias clinging to your point.

    Let's be honest, though there are possibilities for advancement., promotion, education, and a lifetime job if you want it, soldiers these days must also consider the risks of fighting, and dying, in the Middle East. This is a decision that most suburban kids don't have to weigh.

    So, yeah, go ahead and crow about what a wonderful opportunity is being offered to these kids. Wonderful, that is, unless you die in the process. Nothing wrong with that, you say, it's in defense of our country. Until all young people have to make the same tough decision, or none of them does, I don't buy it.
  8. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    But the broader process is youth. What are the 'relative death percentages' between those who go into the military and those who don't? I knew more of my age group who died of ODs, car-to-immovable-object encounters, and other youthful joys than who died in Vietnam.

    I'm not siding with Bruce but think the above an important point.
  9. DTechBA

    DTechBA New Member

    What a crock...

    You don't have to buy it because it isn't your decision to make. I, my wife, and my daughter have all served or are serving in the military. No one forced us to join just like no one is forcing a young man in San Francisco to join. My daughter never had to join since I would have paid for her college just like I did for the older ones but she did anyway and is probably there for a career.

    The military is actually a much safer place than almost any urban inner city in the USA. Young males and especially young black males die at much higher rates in the inner city than currently experienced by US forces worldwide. But hey, in your eyes that is a good thing because they didn't die for anything other than what they wanted to do right? Oh, and before you get on a high horse, the people serving and dying in todays military primarily come from small towns in red states or red counties of blue states. The people joining from areas you mention are a way smaller percentage then they represent in total population, way smaller. Even the young blacks entering the service tend to come from small towns or cities. Fact is, 30% of the population is doing 60%-70% of the serving and dying.

    You are totally and completely off base. ..
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 17, 2005
  10. Tom57

    Tom57 Member


    You're missing the point. In fact, your post does a pretty good job of making my point.

    No one forced you, your wife, or your daughter to join. You all joined of your own accord. Good for you. You all didn't have to make the decision under duress. Exactly my point. In fact, you would have paid for your daughter's education. Good for you, and her. Most inner city youth don't have that luxury. Consider yourself, and your daughter, fortunate, very fortunate. My point again.

    Thank you for pointing out that the military is much safer than the inner city streets. The fact that the comparison of the two is worthwhile makes my point again. So what you're saying is that inner city youth have a greater chance of dying at home than in the military. This is exactly why inner city youth feel "pressured" to join the military - to escape the reality of life at home. Thank you for stating my point exactly.

    So they should all feel thankful that they've traded the high risk of death at home for the slightly smaller risk of death away from home. Is that your point? Or is that my point? I trust that your daughter didn't have to wrestle with that question. Am I right? I guess you’ve made my point again. Thank you.

    You have perfectly illustrated what I have been saying. Wouldn't it be nice if all youth could choose the military exactly the way your daughter did - as a viable alternative to her old man paying her way in college? Sadly, this is not an option that's open to most inner city kids.

    Before you go on about my high horse, consider your own high-handed and imperious assertions - that inner city youth should be damn happy to have the option of trading a high risk existence for one slightly less so. From the sounds of it, this is not a dilemma that anyone in your family had to face.
  11. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    So, inner-city youth would be better off without the military option than they are with it? Where would you have the recruiters be, if anywhere? How do you propose to level the playing field between inner-city youth and suburban youth?
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2005
  12. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I guess I simply do not understand this entire thread.

    We have a volunteer Armed Forces system.

    No one is drafted. If anyone wants to enlist, that's their business, their prerogative, and their choice.
  13. Tom57

    Tom57 Member

    My proposal? Exactly what SF voted for: keep recruiters off of public high school and college campuses. Let students seek out the military after they've had a chance to research all their options - INCLUDING their options for attending college - like they're suburban brothers.

    I find it hilarious that conservatives are so up in arms about the SF proposition and vote. By defending the military aren't you tacitly defending the American system of democracy and the power of the people to make their views known via the vote? The people of SF have spoken, and they've done it the most American of ways. If you don't like it, then move to some other country that you think does it better? Sound familiar? Yes, I thought so.
  14. Mr. Engineer

    Mr. Engineer member

    I agree with Tom on this one. SF voted - in the most democratic of fashions. If you don't like it, move to Texas (please!)

    Just because you live in the inner city doesn't mean you don't have options. I grew up near the Eastmont Mall (where 60% of all murders occur in the city) - in a gang and housing development infested area. I managed to get by and so did all but one of my friends (who still lives there). There are always options - and the military doesn't have to be one of them unless you choose that route.

    I was working with on of the Interns from a local school. He had just graduated from Palo Alto High and I asked him about recruiters. He said that he had never seen one in any of the PA schools. I think it is because PA is a rich area. Drive right across 101 to EPA and you will find military recruiters out in droves. If the military were truly into trying to get youths interested, then they would focus on all schools instead of the inner city ones. Perhaps they think that poor people have fewer options - they are wrong.
  15. Tom57

    Tom57 Member

    Jimmy, your conservative brothers have all but admitted that it's not much of a choice at all - that is, when compared to the choice of living, and dying, in the inner city. So when you mention choice, I guess you have to consider the full spectrum of choices available.

    I contend that inner city kids are beginning to have more choices. Schools are working harder at getting qualified counselers into schools who can steer the kids towards college. Before, a student could go through all four years of high school without even the thought of attending college - not because he/she was not qualified, but because there were no adults who told him/her how to do it.

    No student should have to pick the military out of desperation. Doing so creates a de facto draft. The military is a fine choice for many kids. Let's let them weigh all their options, though, before they make that decision. Why would anyone want to argue with that? Is there anything unreasonable about it? is there any reason you would want to limit the options of inner city kids? Does any conservative think that there aren't enough avenues to get exposure to the military and its benefits apart from recruiters on school campuses? I didn't think so? Then why are they so hell-fired angry at SF for insisting on what middle class conservatives take for granted. Think about it.
  16. DaveHayden

    DaveHayden New Member


    Who is talking about limiting ANY choices except for the people in SF? Students should be able to make the choice that is right for them. I have no problem with counselor encouraging kids to attend college or any other program that could be beneficial to them. I also think a recruiter should be able to mention the benefits of service. I think it can be a good choice for anyone regardless of their location. Why exactly Tom do you think it is so horrible for recruiters to visit schools? Do you know of a specific bad incident that occured?
  17. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    You're obviously not seeing what's around you. Go into the homes of these kids, talk to them, and see how great things are.

    I've been in combat, Tom. How about you?

    I served in the Army with many kids from the suburbs. I don't recall any of them getting a pass from serving in combat.

    In any case, as already pointed out, it's safer in the military as a youth than in the inner-city.

    Anyone thinking of joining the military does face that decision.
  18. BillDayson

    BillDayson New Member

    San Francisco's demographics are pretty atypical compared to the United States.

    The city is about half whites and half minorities.

    The whites are largely singles and childless couples (many gay). Many of these are young and alternative types, often politically left and culturally avant garde. There's also an extremely rich element in places like Pacific Heights and Twin Peaks, but what few children they have are usually in private schools. In fact, it's routine for heterosexual white couples to move out of the city when they have children, in search of homes with yards and better schools. That feeds the suburbs.

    The great majority of the children attending the SF public schools are upwardly mobile Asians or else less successful Hispanics or blacks. (The latter are gradually being priced out of the city and moving to the East Bay.) Many of the Asians and Hispanics with big families aren't citizens and they can't vote. Those that do, particularly the Asians, seem to most often be small-business oriented pragmatic stalwarts who culturally are lightyears removed from the gays and hipsters. They aren't Republicans exactly, but they aren't counterculture radicals either. Perhaps the best word to describe them is 'no-nonsense'.

    But it's a fact of SF life that the people that don't have kids are far more apt to be voters than the heavily immigrant cohort whose kids populate the city's schools.

    So my guess is that the voters with children out there in the Richmond and Sunset might well have voted 'no' to this expulsion of the military from the city, while the self-consciously alternative Mission, Haight and Castro neighborhoods where children are rarities, probably voted 'yes' by a large margin as their 'fuck you' to George Bush.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2005
  19. Kit

    Kit New Member

    Most of the protests seem to be coming from parents rather than students.

    Perhaps it's understandable why some parents might not want military recruiters visiting high schools for two reasons; most of those students are minors and high schools are not generally visited by corporate recruiters. But to ban military recruiters from a college campus seems ridiculous. Those students are already 18 or older, and corporate recruiters are common at colleges. Yet the protests seem to be limited to military recruiters. Some of the parents phoning in to radio stations are spouting so much hyperbole it's as if they are convinced the sole purpose of military recruiters is to forcibly kidnap their over-18 "babies" and immediately toss them into the dungeons of front-line combat. Strangely enough, many of those same "babies" are also phoning in, embarassed by the actions of their parents. Maybe they should consider it payback for all those long-ago toddler tantrums in public places. :p

    Considering what's been going on in the coporate world (Enron, WorldCom, Tyco, et. al), it's curious none of these parents are protesting the presence of corporate recruiters. After all, doesn't everybody know the sole purpose of those demonic corporate monsters is to kidnap unsuspecting college students and immediately force them into evil lives of white collar crime? :eek:

  20. se94583

    se94583 New Member

    Apparently "super moderator" status allows one to violate the TOS with "personal attacks"?


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