Re “Base, sweet base,” June 13
I’m a former Marine. I spent three years in the Corps, including a tour in Vietnam in 1966. I have been reading with interest your series on the disconnect the general public has with the armed forces.
Having an all-volunteer military is a policy that President Nixon instituted toward the end of the Vietnam War because of growing public dissatisfaction, particularly among draft-age Americans. It was an idea that was driven by politics. I think it’s a bad idea.
What we have today is an insular, almost mercenary military that serves a population with no connection to them, a population with no skin in the game. I think the draft should be reinstated with no deferments, and both men and women should be taken. Then they should be given a choice: military service or public service.
We don’t need any more marketing ploys from beer companies or people thanking us for our service so they can feel better about themselves. Stop using us with your patriotic baloney. Enough, already.
MAKAYLA BALDERAS, 3, looks at uniforms as she shops with her family at Camp Pendleton store.