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Sun Nov 10, 2013, 02:58 AM


Advice to a young person

I wasn't going to post this, but on reflection with the many NSA/GCHQ/spying stories going on this weekend I have decided to tell this story.

A young man lives just across the street and we've talked from time to time about many different things. I'm guessing that my observations and views have rung true to him, because he came to me about July and wanted to talk. We talked of nothing for about a half hour before he got to his subject. He wondered what he should do. Some people were advising him to join the military, and go and defend the country. Others were suggesting a trade school.

I told him that the choice was his. In his shoes, I would not join the military. Joining the military means that you are defending what the nation stands for. In this case, doing so now means a nation that jails and brutalizes people like Manning. It means you declare reporters terrorists who tell the truth about the things the country is doing wrong. It means you are willing to fight, and willingly die to defend the nation's policies, and were any of those policies worth dying for? Would you die so your country could listen to phone conversations without warrants? Would you die so they could read the emails of innocent people?

I miss our conversations. I'm nearly certain that they won't take place hardly ever anymore. He's gone to stay with an Aunt while he attends a school to be an auto mechanic.

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Reply Advice to a young person (Original post)
Savannahmann Nov 2013 OP
2naSalit Nov 2013 #1

Response to Savannahmann (Original post)

Sun Nov 10, 2013, 03:08 AM

1. You never know

Perhaps he'll come back and thank you for helping him figure it out at a later date. I had such a conversation with my young nephew who was considering joining the National Guard just before 9/11... I could smell war when W got into the White House. He was concerned about paying for college, I had insisted he go to school, and his friends were joining for the money that could pay for school.

He took my advice and a few years after the war had turned into the ugliest-demon-nightmare-from-hell, he thanked me for talking him out of it. He also drove six hundred miles to visit me last year to thank me again for making him go to college.

You may well hear from this young man again and find that he is quite thankful. At least I hope you do. You have done a righteous thing and I will applaud you for being so responsible for being honest with him.

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