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What do you think about the Army National Guard recruiting on the Kansas University campus?

Asked at Jefferson's Restaurant, 743 Mass. on April 15, 2005

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Photo of Priya Selvan

“I think it’s a lot better than them going to high schools. At least people on campus can make a more educated decision.”

Photo of Mike Stanclift

“I think college students are smart enough to know what they are getting themselves into.”

Photo of Kelsey Schiffelbein

“As long as they are giving them accurate and truthful information, I think it could be a good option for college kids to think about.”

Photo of David Ruttan

“I think they are going to have a hard time recruiting at KU. I don’t see anything wrong with it, but they are going to have a hard time.”


lunacydetector 13 years ago

i don't have a problem with it.

the article mentions the "de-cruiters" showing a photo of an injured baby from an airstrike. perhaps these "do-gooders" should show photos of the infanticide happening in this country, especially Wichita. I was reading that doctor does 500 a year at $5,000 a pop. But of course, most "do-gooders" think THAT is okay.

Fangorn 13 years ago

I've never understood the problem some people have with recruiters on campuses, college or high school. College students are certainly mature enough to make their own decision. And high school students under 18 need parental consent to enlist anyway.

I would suggest, LD, that an even more relevant rebuttal to these "de-cruiters" would be photos of those who were killed or maimed under Hussein's rule. Their little pamphlet of material pales pathetically when compared to "Suffering under Saddam, Vols. 1-16". Tens of thousands of deliberate deaths (remember the gassed Kurds?) utterly overwhelms a handful of accidental deaths caused by US actions.

italianprincess 13 years ago

Some army recruiting guy called here just last week and said he was calling juniors and seniors from Free State to see if they wanted to sign up for the reserves.

I told him " NO " ( I'm a mom ) that my son wouldn't be signing up that he would be going to college after high school. The man on the phone said " I went to college also and....."

Basically before he could finish, I just told him " NO " that my son wouldn't be signing up for any military. Not that I'm making my son's mind up for him, but he has no desire to join the military as a 16 year old right now.

I think that them being in the high schools is a bit much and maybe they should stay at the campus.

neopolss 13 years ago

Lunacy, I fear you might start attacking abortion clinics in the future. You're rather zealous when it comes to the subject. I'd hate to see you on the news.

As for the recruits, let them recruit on campus. I don't see any reason to obstruct any business from operating when its operation is customer based. No customers = no business. Let the power of consumer determine their staying power.

craigers 13 years ago

Why do people think that high school students suddenly grow a brain and begin thinking intelligently once they get to college campuses? I think recruiting there is fine, but I think recruiting at high schools are fine too. If these kids/adults can make choices about where to go to college, then they should be able to make the same decision about the military. If somebody is really niave in high school then they will probably be the same way in college and get talked into doing something they shouldn't by the recruiter. It all works out. Recruit away.

GreenEyedBlues 13 years ago

They hand out banana-flavored condoms and samples of Big Red on campus! By all means, why should military recruiters miss all the fun? Holy crap, students are buried in fliers on Senate Week. A large percentage of that garbage ends up in the trash can or strewn about the walks. Have at it, military buddies!

Hong_Kong_Phooey 13 years ago

Yes, they most definitely should be allowed on campus - both college and high school. High school's allow college recruiters to come to their campuses. Why not military recruiters?! Personally, I think that all students out of high school should have to serve a two-year enlistment in the military. Partly because I think it will help instill in them a respect and appreciation for their country, and partly because the majority of them REALLY need the discipline and maturity that comes with serving.

Christy_K 13 years ago

I am definitely for recruiters on campus. As a member of the Armed Forces I know that many young students have misconceptions about the military, I did. I thought they brainwashed people and turned you into an automaton and killer.

Then I grew up and realized that the military doesn't make you, you make the military! While I may agree with some of the sentiments of the derecruiters, I don't agree with immature retoric (from the left or right) and the spread of disinformation or scare tactics.

Regardless of the reasons we go to war (and the fact is some of our reasoning was flat out wrong for Iraq), the goal is to fight for your country and something greater than yourself. Administrations will come and go and sometimes you may have to do something you don't want to or agree with completely...but...quess what...that's called life.

In the military I've done more to improve other people's lives than most of those pro-life (whether they are anti-war or anti-abortion...same thing) protestors. There are productive ways of being in the Army. Not everyone is a tank gunner or ranger (of course you do need to have the basic soldier skills).

Students need to be exposed to what the military can offer, educate themselves, interview current soldiers and veterans and make an informed decision. The military is not right for everyone and there is nothing wrong with that. Trust me, if you don't want to be there, we don't want you either.

The military only wants the brightest and the best, and more importantly those who are willing to put muscle and hardwork behind their rhetoric. Protesting is just noise.

captain_poindexter 13 years ago

Wow, I am pleased to see such agreement on LJWorld. Nice work. recruiters are recruiters, they should be allowed, just like the guy that noted phillip morris. if we banned them, should be ban the lawrence pd too?

remember_username 13 years ago

You can think of the Guard as a job. Job recruiters are encouraged on campuses everywhere, so is the Peace Corps, so why not the U.S. Military? I would hope that they don't encourage students to leave before they graduate, and I don't expect that they do, so why not allow students to consider a military career. In spite of the opinion of many of my fellow liberals a career in the military can be as honorable and rewarding as one in the Peace Corps. Much depends on the integrity of the political leadership and soldiers do not have the luxury of controlling their leadership, it does not, and should not work that way.

As for Saddam Hussein and the "liberation" of Iraq, all I will say is two wrongs don't make a right.

Christy_K - Protesting is not just making noise, but a valuable (although informal) part of checks and balances.

Ceallach 13 years ago

For crying out loud - the KLAN has the right to to come to campus. After that soaks in you realize that anything goes.

Here at Big Blue, on a regular basis, we deal with parents who are either unable or unwilling to acknowledge the adulthood of their children. Agree or not, 18 year olds are adults. That they are immature or naive is a given. How many of us were not at that age. They make decisions that alter their lives every day, some for the good, others not.

Fathers and mothers call demanding the right to know details of their student's info, be it housing, grades, holds, etc. They get very frustrated because, in reality, they are voluntarily paying the tuition and fees of a young adult, AND that adult must give his/her permission before anyone can access their data. (BTW ladies, I'm sorry to report that Mom's are the worst! If you are talking with a father they seems more willing to accept the possibility that their student may indeed be at fault, with Mothers--forget it.)

Anyway . . . . . let the military come to campus and show a little respect. They are the ones that make it possible to legally protest those things with which we do not agree -- even military recruitment.

Fangorn 13 years ago

HKP: While I agree that most of today's young people would benefit from even a short time in military service, I assert in the strongest possible terms that such mandatory service would not benefit the military (i.e. draft = very bad idea). I would rather try to do my job with a handful of NCOs who want to serve, than a full squadron of civilians in BDUs who chafe at their involuntary servitude. For a quarter of a century we have shown that an all-volunteer military works best. Yes, recruiting can be difficult, but the costs of a draft far outweigh any perceived benefit.

remember_username 13 years ago

I agree with Fangorn on the drawbacks of the draft. Having served in both draft-time and volunteer time periods I can assert that there is considerable difference in proformance. (Fangorn - squadron? you must be USAF)

However, there is something to be said for some form of civil service after high school. I'll leave that for another time.

captain_poindexter 13 years ago

Once again, we are in total agreement. A draft is a very bad idea. I am only 27, so haven't lived through a draft, but I can assume its not a pleasant experience.

Ceallach 13 years ago

It seems to me the all volunteer status of our military speaks volumes about our country and its citizenry. If we must deploy, we do not grab men and boys off the street and force them into service. Our men and women honorably represent us around the world, be it in peace or times of war. Unfortunately, the media seems drawn to focus on the dishonorable deeds of the few and the magnificent accomplishments of the many are swept aside.

I am also proud of the residents of Lawrence. Though many of us disagree about whether or not the military action in Iraq is necessary, I have not seen the troop bashing we were forced to endure during and after Viet Nam.

Adam 13 years ago

I think they should recruit in prisons, particularly death row inmates. I'd rather have "professionals" doing the killing for this country than a bunch of inexperienced high school/college kids.

remember_username 13 years ago

Adam - not a good idea. Respect for authority is critical in the service and those in prison usually have some issues with that. Plus it has been done before with little success. Many of those in service during Vietnam were given a choice by the judicial system when convicted of minor offenses. Jail for 2 years or the Army/USMC for 2 years.

Inexperienced "youngsters" make some of the best soldiers. Many haven't accepted their own mortality (yet) and therefore bravely take risks us "oldsters" call crazy.

Ceallach 13 years ago

There are many true followers of Jesus Christ actively defending our country today. The United States of America is not an island with impenetrable borders (the borders are another topic) in which we have the luxury of sitting back and waiting for someone to attack our home and give us reason to protect it. We tried the isolation route, it didn't work.

It must be difficult to restrict your vision to the point that you see only oil as the motivation behind this action when so many other things are brought to our attention daily.

raven 13 years ago

bowhunter: although I agree with almost everything you said I disagree that most college students are relying on their parents to pay thier tution. It is off subject I know, however almost everyone I know in college is paying their own way, either through student loans or through their part time jobs. I think this is a vast misconception of college students and find it offensive, having just recently graduated from college myself and I paid every bit of my expenses throughout college on my own.

italianprincess 13 years ago

Original Bob,

They can call all the want, but my son as long as he is living in my house and attending high school will not be signing up for anything without my consent.

When he goes off to college like he plans to he can make the decision himself. My son wants to major in accounting or marketing which he has been taking for a couple years now in high school. I don't believe he would sign up unless he had to ( draft ) .

lunacydetector 13 years ago

neopolss, dream on if you think i would do anything violent like attacking an abortion clinic. i am stating the hypocrisy of the "do gooders."

craigers 13 years ago

I do think that the majority of college students have their parent's paying most of the bill. However, to Ceallach, the parents have a right to that information especially if they are paying for it. You say that they are voluntarily paying for it? Colleges make it very hard for the parents not to help with paying the bill. All the financial need based help or aid is determined off of the FAFSA and you have to put your parent's information on it no matter if they are paying for it or not. I would say if the student is paying the bill, then it should be need based off of their income. Until the university's make all the information purely the students responsibility and financial stance, then I think the parents should still be involved.

Christy_K 13 years ago

Okay, I'll take the hit on the strong protestor comment but my point is many protestors don't actually DO anything but talk. It is often the method, not the cause, I disagree with.

As for liberals in the military...guess what, there are many in uniform and liberals DO understand what it takes to be free; which is why many protest destruction of freedoms so strongly. There are a lot of left extremists who protest the military unfairly, but they do not represent all of us. Claiming liberals don't serve or know what it takes is just ignorant rhetoric. (Sorry strong again but I'm &@(#) tired of liberals as being label unpatriotic!) The military doesn't care about your politics until you become a general :).

Courage comes in three colors red, white, and blue. The fact they are KU's colors is bonus. :)

betti81 13 years ago

I don't usually post, but I resent what bowhunter had to say. I have been virtually on my own since I was 18 (by vitually I mean money had been borrowed to pay for some expenses during hard times, but all was paid back). and if "mommy and daddy" can afford to send their children through college, then they should. Most college grads, as you may know, graduate with thousands of dollars in debts (and I am talking just in student loans, not extras). I was blessed with a scholarship and finished in four years, but if I had not had a scholarship (which, with the rising tuition costs did not cover what it was supposed to when I first received it) I would have had over $12,000.00 in debt to start my "life" off with. How is that good for a person? There are lessons to teach our children, but always being in the red in not one of them.

in regards to the recruiting on campus, the law makes us adults at 18 regardless of how we pay for things, so recruiting is fine in my book. unfortunately, like the 'decruiters' said, the truth is not always told by these recruiters. also, they can be quite persistant and annoying during a students senior year in high school. I received at least one phone call a week and non stop direct mail during my senior year. at least the mail made good kenneling =)

italianprincess 13 years ago

I feel as a parent if the military is going to be at our high schools talking to our kids about joining then we should be notified about.

raven 13 years ago

I disagree that most students are recieving financial help from their parents. Most of the students I know are not. They are paying themselves, however I agree that if the student is paying the bill it should be based off their income.

remember_username 13 years ago

Christy_K - I too get frustrated by the accusation of unpatriotic liberals. I'm a intellectual liberal and I'm proud of my service. I am also proud of those who serve and understand their sacrifice. Most liberals I have met have ideological oppositions to the Bush administration policies but no animosity to the soldiers that serve.

I have to admit to being a little uneasy about recruiting in High Schools. If recruiters were not pressured by quotas and were allowed to be honest and reflective in front of impressionable minds I would feel better. I can still remember that young 17 year old who listened to the recruiters in dress blues. Who woke up standing on yellow footprints in San Deigo and with thoughts of a war in Vietnam said "what the h*ll did I just do?"

Ceallach 13 years ago

craigers -- I was not stating my opinion. There is a little ditty called the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, commonly referred to as the Buckley Amendment of FERPA -- compliance is mandatory. KU has made it very easy for students to give parent/guardian access to their records, many do so, some do not. Any student (of legal age)has to make the decision.

I personally agree with you and having been the parent of a KU student I can assure you that any child who denied me access to their records would have been quickly denied access to my funds :) I firmly believe in the power of $$$. I blatantly used it to steer my children toward good choices when they were young and from bad choices as they grew older. It didn't seem to damage their little psyche too much, they are all pretty good at handling themselves and their $$$.

Hong_Kong_Phooey 13 years ago

Italianprincess: Do you also want to be notified whenever a college recruiter goes into a high school? Or a peace corps recruiter? Or a Teach America recruiter?

Or is it just the military that you discriminate against?

craigers 13 years ago

My bad Ceallach, I had now idea that the rule went back so far. Why has the idea of keeping parents out unless they have permission become so prominent lately?

remember_username 13 years ago

Whoa, there H_K_P. Read her posts, i_princess is just being a mother.

Ceallach 13 years ago

craigers, it's only a guess -- complaints. Most change rides on the heels of complaints.

A procedure is in place whereas if a student believes that a university is not in compliance with the Privacy Act, he/she may file a complaint with the federal government concerning the university's failure to comply. The Family Policy Compliance Office will notify the student and the university when the complaint has been received. (And its all downhill from there :) That of course is my own aside and not part of the policy. . . .Bottom line, it is the law and conscientious employees of a university do not put their school at risk.

Most families work it out with little or no interaction with FERPA. (If a family cannot work it out -- who wants to be in the middle of that? Not me!)

Richard Heckler 13 years ago

I say they should approach our illustrious tough talking president in order to give him the opportunity to put his body where his mouth is...

Hopefully younger college students won't become overwhelmed by promises made by recruiters knowing they have quoatas to meet. Recruiters promises made to enlisted level recruits during a war will likely turn out to be bogus. Once you are in boot camp no matter what some recruiter might have promised you pretty much do what you are more democracy. The war in Iraq is pretty much the ultimately ruling body. The college assistance is pretty cool so long as you live to take advantage of it.

italianprincess 13 years ago


KU has already been sending my son letter after letter ( I'm sure like other students as well ) for him to come to KU and check out the campus and talk to them.

As far as the Peace Corps or Teach America goes, any type of buisness, company, or organization that is in our schools wanting to recruit our kids we as parents should be notified.

Call me a mom who is protective of her kids or call me a mom who is concerned about what goes on in our schools. I'm a very involved school mom who wants to know whats going on there. We as parents make it our buisness to know these things so we know how are kids are doing there.

Do you have kids and if so are you also as involved with what happens at their school/schools?

Fangorn 13 years ago

r_u: Yes, USAF Reserve. 16 years (14 with stripes). My bars change color Monday. I can confirm that there are many liberals serving honorably in the military. Service members, as a whole, tend to be more conservative than the general population. This is especially true of officers. But there are liberals who choose military service as a way of showing their love of country, though most, I think, find other ways. [btw, from your remarks I gather that you served at a time in our history when military service wasn't popular or esteemed. I thank you for your service and for helping to create the military that has been such an important part of my life.]

I personally would want to know of any outside recruiters or speakers being brought to my children's school. As one of a two-member team (i.e. Mom and Dad) bearing responsibility for their up-bringing and education, I want to know what influences they face. It is our choice to reinforce, oppose, or merely observe the values advocated by the recruiter or speaker. As a single mother, italianprincess' responsibility is even more concentrated, so to speak. I understand her desire to be the primary influence in her son's life until her own values have been thoroughly instilled and he is mature enough to make major, life-altering decisions.

I would like to say that today's topic could have degenerated into hostility. I extol the very civil tone everyone has maintained.

Richard Heckler 13 years ago

The United States has not been an innocent bystander during any portion of the Saddam regime. Whenever an american interest is declared the United States gov't becomes involved...right or wrong. A broad spectrum of weapons also becomes available to these governments dictatorships or not ...lets' stay real about this.

I would not my children becoming active duty for this war. Iraqi's were not flying the 9/11 airplanes. Saudi Arabia is reaping extraordinary oil profits, as are our american counter parts, now than Iraq oil is truly no longer on the market.

BTW I am a active duty veteran but this war stinks. It smells of west Texas oil mentality...remember "Dallas".GW Bush may not be necessarily stupid but he is a fool.

Smarmy_Schoolmarm 13 years ago

Any school that receives Federal funding has to supply military recruiters access to students and student information. This falls under the No Child Left Behind Act. Here is an article that goes into some depth on the subject....

And here is a PDF file...a letter from Secretary of Education Rod Paige and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld posted on the State of Virginia's Department of Education web site. It's about half way down...titled Military Recruitment and NCLB.

So you doesn't really matter what any of us think about recruiting on our campuses.

Fangorn: That was the right book; The Story of English. I hope you are enjoying it.

Smarmy_Schoolmarm 13 years ago

Ah I forgot the link to the second web's too late to be trying to catch up with my online reading.

Here is the link to the PDF file.....

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