GI Bill

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Politics

by maria on 11.04.2008 - 00:14  

In the off-chance that someone actually reads this blog, I am hoping to convince my reader(s) to sign the petition asking McCain to support the new GI Bill being proposed by Sens. Jim Webb and Chuck Hagel. It would bring back WWII-era standards of providing vets with full tuition, room and board. So far 51 senators have signed on as co-sponsors. But the bill remains nine votes short of the supermajority necessary to dissuade a filibuster. The link to the petition is at the bottom of this post.

The GI Bill that I used when I got out of the army was not very helpful, and the GI Bill now has barely changed since then. I believe it would be a great benefit to both the current service members and the country to pass this new GI bill.

Military.com has a good article in support of the petition.

One reason that critics say this might not be a good idea, is because they claim that this will encourage more soldiers to leave after their commitment is over. I think this blogpost addresses this well.

And a link from The American Conservative for those who prefer a more conservative bent on things.

From the American Conservative article:
According to many historians, the 15 million "Greatest Generation" veterans who seized the chance to go to college on the government's dime paid off = they became scientists, doctors, inventors, attorneys, writers and, yes, politicians of the "New Frontier." Five World War II veterans in the current senate say they wouldn't have graduated from their schools under the current Montgomery formula.

I believe doing something like this now would be especially helpful since we now have an all-volunteer army. This means that there are many poor people and minorities enlisted today. One might say, why mix our programs, why not just help the poor people and minorities directly, instead of picking the ones in the military. Of course, we already have some programs to help minorities and the poor (although it is not nearly enough, imo). But two reasons we should additionally help veterans, first to thank them for serving our country by giving them a chance at a greater future, and second because I think the people who volunteer for the military and do their time are also more likely to succeed in college. So, not only are we rewarding them for serving our country, but we are helping out people that we all too often shit upon.

For a history of the GI Bill.

And finally, Wes Clark's message and link to the petition.


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