K.McCaffrey — In light of the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, it has been interesting to watch the way certain schools have reconsidered hosting a ROTC program on their campuses. As far as New York City schools go, currently only Fordham University in the Bronx hosts ROTC training for students from Columbia and NYU, the largest private university in the country. The commute is a real pain, I know several students who do it almost daily, and things would be an awful lot easier if Columbia reopened for training. There has been a debate raging on campus, and the students of Columbia showed their true colors:
“Racist!” some students yelled at Anthony Maschek, a Columbia freshman and former Army staff sergeant awarded the Purple Heart after being shot 11 times in a firefight in northern Iraq in February 2008. Others hissed and booed the veteran.Maschek, 28, had bravely stepped up to the mike Tuesday at the meeting to issue an impassioned challenge to fellow students on their perceptions of the military.“It doesn’t matter how you feel about the war. It doesn’t matter how you feel about fighting,” said Maschek. “There are bad men out there plotting to kill you.”Several students laughed and jeered the Idaho native, a 10th Mountain Division infantryman who spent two years at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington recovering from grievous wounds.
There is nothing intrinsically bad about disagreeing with the war if you have a set of assumptions, reasons, or objections that lead you to believe it is wrong (in my opinion, anyway). However, when someone who nearly sacrificed their life in the name of your freedom tries to make a point or suggestion, shut up with the politics and at least try to listen.