Why Columbia Should Welcome ROTC

Discussion in 'Military' started by PoliticalChic, Dec 9, 2008.

  1. PoliticalChic
    Online

    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Messages:
    55,745
    Thanks Received:
    15,624
    Trophy Points:
    2,190
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Ratings:
    +24,893
    By LEARNED FOOTE
    For nearly four decades, Columbia University has excluded Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) from its campus, a decision made in the wake of student unrest in the late 1960s. But this Sept. 11, candidates John McCain and Barack Obama reignited the debate before a crowd of 8,000 students when they both came out in favor of ROTC's return.

    Last week, this latest argument over ROTC ended when results of an undergraduate referendum were tallied. The pro-ROTC side lost by 39 votes.

    A few gay students, I among them, publicly supported the return of ROTC. Today, opposition to ROTC's return focuses predominantly on the federal law known as "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," which prevents gay people from serving openly in the armed forces. Columbia Students for Naval ROTC, a coalition of roughly 30 students, included four gay people. Notably, the other three gay members were veterans, men and women who had served under "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." Every member of Columbia Students for NROTC -- gay and straight -- opposes that policy, and yet we strongly believe in NROTC's return. Why?

    The ROTC programs produce more officers than service academies like West Point. More than 60% of officers in the army are ROTC graduates. Through ROTC, students receive a liberal arts education thanks to generous scholarships, often covering the entire cost of tuition. They spend their undergraduate years studying alongside the civilians they may eventually risk their lives for, promoting a healthy interaction between civil society and the military. Upon graduation, students in ROTC receive commissions and command 30-50 soldiers or sailors, immediately contributing to military leadership.

    Columbia has a long history of military service. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower once served as our university president, and 23,000 midshipmen trained on our campus during World War II. Our Naval ROTC once graduated more officers per year than the Naval Academy.
    Article continued below.

    Why Columbia Should Welcome ROTC - WSJ.com

    Columbia's reasoning for the ROTC ban doesn't hold a lot of water. Why didn't they take Iran's human rights record into consideration when they extended Ahmadinejad an invitation to speak at Columbia?

    The fact of the matter is that they have an inherent hatred towards the military. Their policy hurts families that can use the tuition money in a time where the price of a college education is skyrocketing.
     
  2. Tech_Esq
    Offline

    Tech_Esq Sic Semper Tyrannis!

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,408
    Thanks Received:
    558
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Ratings:
    +558
    I've always thought these bans said more about the faculty and administration of the school than the students. We know that he faculty and administration of Columbia are dyed in the wool liberals (of the Stalinist type). So, I see no indication that they would allow ROTC on their campus. My guess would be that the student referendum would only have been the first hurdle. This makes it easy for the administration, "Oh, the students don't want it."

    On another note, I would hate to be the Professor of Military Science at Columbia. What a lonely job.
     
  3. BlackAsCoal
    Offline

    BlackAsCoal Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2008
    Messages:
    5,203
    Thanks Received:
    528
    Trophy Points:
    155
    Ratings:
    +1,884
    I have no idea why the ROTC was ever alllowed on college and universtity campuses in the first place. What does the military have to do with higher education?
     
  4. Epsilon Delta
    Offline

    Epsilon Delta Jedi Master

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    Messages:
    2,687
    Thanks Received:
    363
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Central America
    Ratings:
    +364
    We actually just voted on a proposition like this for the Student Association:

    I voted for both propositions. The recruitment I don't care too much about, though. I know I wouldn't join. (Granted, I'm not Canadian anyway, but if I were I still wouldn't, unless it would be getting invaded or something like that). Military spending and military technology, though, I'm just pretty much against the whole thing. I don't want to have ANYTHING to do with it on any level. In any case, universities should handle this with democratic student participation, and let them decide whether they want to be a part of it or not.
     
  5. Tech_Esq
    Offline

    Tech_Esq Sic Semper Tyrannis!

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    Messages:
    4,408
    Thanks Received:
    558
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Ratings:
    +558
    Quite a bit. Military Science is a course of study just like Political Science is. You need educated military officers in order to provide for the common defense of the country.
     
  6. PoliticalChic
    Online

    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Messages:
    55,745
    Thanks Received:
    15,624
    Trophy Points:
    2,190
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Ratings:
    +24,893
    I was surprised by the results of the referendum which showed that the pro-ROTC lost by 39 votes. Things may be different when a relative of mine did ROTC at Yale 20 years ago. He would find his car tires regularly slashed and it wasn't by accident.
     
  7. Xenophon
    Offline

    Xenophon Gone and forgotten

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2008
    Messages:
    16,705
    Thanks Received:
    3,750
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    In your head
    Ratings:
    +3,751
    I don't forsee them allowing ROTC anytime soon if ever.
     

Share This Page