Why is it when budget cuts in the government need to be made, the first place they look at is the military? In my opinion and being a Veteran, I think that the individuals that put their life on the line should be paid A LOT more. Yes, I know healthcare is free, single soldiers live in the barracks for free, though the military does provide housing for families to live on post, the money that is allotted for Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is automatically taken from their pay and given to whatever company is in charge of the on post housing. Athletes get paid millions upon millions of dollars for playing a sport, but a soldier who puts their life on the line for their country, gets paid pennies.
A lot of the budget cuts should be made from those same individuals that propose budget cuts. Individuals that work in the United States Government make anywhere from $250,000 to $400,000. Also to top it off, these same individuals receive the same pay when they retire. When you retire from the military, your pay is cut in half, at least that’s my experience. Our government doesn’t have their priorities in order. The United States has an all Volunteer force and these same individuals still VOLUNTEERED knowing the fact that they will deploy to Iraq or Afghanistan and could possibly pay the ultimate sacrifice with his/her life. It just doesn’t make sense to me. Individuals that work in Congress should be paid a lot less than they receive now, because they are not the ones that have to leave their families for up to 15 months, they are not the ones that can’t be there for their child’s birth, they are not the ones that have to deploy to a hostile environment, they are not the ones that get shot at, they aren’t the ones that have a vehicle that gets destroyed by an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) and in some cases stay on the battlefield because the injury didn’t fit the criteria for them to be MEDEVAC’d, they are not the ones that stay in fire-fights for hours and see their best friend or one of their soldiers give the ultimate sacrifice.
I don’t know what the individuals in our government are thinking, but they need to pull their heads out of their 4th point of contact (butt) and do right by the military. In some units that I have been in, we’ve had to locally purchase items because what the military issues out isn’t worth anything. I feel like the government gives the military just enough so that the rest of the world doesn’t look at America as being weak. Now with the troop withdrawals and downsizing the military happening soon, the unemployment rate is going to sky rocket. Civilians that get contracts from the military should also get a cut in pay.
Speaking of Civilians, I hated working with Civilians that worked on post. They feel that they are all high and mighty and treat soldiers like crap. I’m not saying that all Civilians are like that, but I guess its just my luck that I’ve had that experience. Another thing that doesn’t make sense to me is that some of these same civilians are retired from the military. They know exactly what we go through, but don’t care because and I quote from a civilian working on post, “well it’s not me so I don’t care, I’m just here to get more money from the government.” This is ridiculous………now let me get back to government budget cuts. The military sends you to basic training and advanced Individual Training for a specific job, but instead of filling that job with a knowledgable and capable soldier, the government would rather pay a civilian contractor $100,000. Does that make any sense?
If you are a veteran or currently serving in the military, you can look around and see a lot of ways where the military wastes money. How many government civilian vehicles does a post need? Do we really need a private security firm to man our gates? Do we need civilians working in our dining facilities? I say NO. If we stopped giving contracts out to civilians and let soldiers do their job they signed up to do, that would save a lot of money. We have Military Police that can man the gates and we have Cooks that can manage a dining facility. I know that me ranting about the military needing more money is going to fall on deaf ears, but I felt like it needed to be said. It upsets me to see a soldier finish their term in the military and they aren’t given the option to re-enlist. What is that soldier to do? What is that soldier with a spouse and kids supposed to do? With the economy in its current state, jobs are very hard to come by. I have been retired from the military for almost a year and I fill out at LEAST 4 job applications a week, but not only that, I’ll stop by an establishment to see if they are hiring. What the individuals in our government doesn’t see or understand that there is a struggle. What soldiers are told to do when a dignitary or someone that is in a position of power, you have to put on an act, like you love everything that is going on. You can’t be straight up with them, because if you do, your command will eat you alive.
I’m sure that it will forever be this way, but there seriously needs to be a BIG change in our government. These “leaders” claim to care about “us”, but let’s be real people, they don’t. They only thing that they care about is to make sure their job and benefits are secured and could care less about everything else. If we had individuals in our government that wanted the best for the military, then the military would have what it needs. It doesn’t matter what color the president is or who did what, plain and simple, IT NEEDS TO BE FIXED!