Thursday, December 22, 2011

The “Support the Troops” Folks Forget to Support the Troops After They Return Home

Can’t Be Wasting Taxpayer Money on Men and Women Who Served Their Country Can We

Another Unanswerable Question – Why are Veterans Treated so Poorly?

Every, and we do mean every politician and elected official espouses the mantra of “support the troops”.  It is the one political theme for which there is no disagreement.  The men and women of the armed forces have made sacrifices in order the protect the nation’s interest, and even if one does not agree with the policy that sent them into harm’s way, one admires and respects the fact that they are doing the job.

The U. S. is a nation of citizen soldiers.  So after serving honorably many veterans leave the military in order to pursue a life of economic prosperity in the civilian sector, you know, the life that the rest of us have.  But it turns out that after serving in the military that great civilian life is beyond the grasp of many veterans.

Veterans’ joblessness is concentrated among the young and those still serving in the National Guard or Reserve. The unemployment rate for veterans aged 20 to 24 has averaged 30 percent this year

What!!!  How can this be?  How can a nation that reveres the young men and women who serve in the armed forces allow them to return to civilian life and a 30% unemployment rate? 

The employment gap cannot be explained by a simple factor like lack of a college degree — despite their discipline and training, young veterans fare worse in the job market than their peers without degrees.

Employers and veterans seem to view each other as alien species. Managers, few of whom have military experience themselves, may fear the aftereffects of combat or losing reservists to another deployment. They may have difficulty understanding how military accomplishments translate to the civilian world.

Okay, so there’s a problem here, a problem that could be solved by, let’s see, what would be the appropriate group to solve this problem?  Well how about the American people, the people whose interests were served by veterans?  Shouldn’t they solve the problem?  The government has incrased its hiring efforts for veterans and for employment support

The Obama administration has stepped up hiring of veterans, adding more than 85,000 to the government payroll since the 2008 fiscal year. On Saturday, President Obama praised returning veterans and said “it is time to enlist our veterans and all our people in the work of rebuilding America.” The administration is trying to shape a “career-ready military” whose medics and electricians can more easily attain the licenses they need to work as civilians. As of October, the G.I. Bill that pays for college can also be used for vocational training or apprenticeships.

But guess who wants to cut government employees and government spending  (If you don’t know you haven’t been paying attention), so the support of Federal programs is in jeopardy.

And in the private sector, there are some efforts underway, but they mostly define and clarify the meaning of the phrase “drop in the bucket”.

The Obama administration has championed veterans’ maturity, management skills and even their promptness. Employers have jumped on the bandwagon, and large companies like JPMorgan Chase and Verizon have signed a pledge to hire a total of 100,000 veterans by 2020. More than 220,000 veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan are out of work.

The conclusion of all of this is another question, “Why don’t those who say they support the troops actually do so?”

1 comment:

  1. Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!