A U.S. Soldier with D Company, 1st Battalion, 3rd Aviation Regiment (Attack Reconnaissance), 12th Combat Aviation Brigade, conducts routine maintenance on a AH-64 Apache helicopter on Aug. 29, 2018, at Katterbach Army Airfield in Ansbach, Germany. The Army continues to identify ways that existing technology could be employed or re-combined to produce better products at lower cost.(Photo Credit: U.S. Army photo by Charles Rosemond)

One of the recurring complaints about the military is that it doesn't take well to new ideas. By its very nature, the military has a structure that lends itself to ideas becoming orders from the top down.

The path of least resistance is certainly to shut up and color.

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An ad from Gillette blew up the Internet earlier this month. You've seen it. The one that says men need to do better. It strikes against bullying and sexual harassment...you know, toxic masculinity.

The usual vetflakes and emotionally fragile reactionaries immediately went into spasms of rage over the idea that a company was telling them that they shouldn't catcall women or let a kid get beaten by an unruly mob chasing him.

Some people are legitimately outraged by the idea that young men shouldn't be giving each other beatdowns. A not insignificant group feels seriously threatened by being told to be better.

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"So what?"

"Huh?"

"So WHAT? Your experience. So what?"

I'd just given my friend a copy of my resume to read. "So what?" wasn't the reaction I'd been hoping for, but he was absolutely right.

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Airman 1st Class Deana Heitzman

The origins of the challenge coin have been lost to antiquity. It’s really anyone’s guess as to how these trinkets came about. 

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U.S. Army photo

When discussing societal ills, people start talking about mandatory national service as a solution. A lot of this comes from the usual crowd of misanthropic veterans who think all of today’s lazy and entitled Millennials and Gen Zers need military service to whip them into shape.

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US Army

When it comes to deciding whether to leave the military or to make it a career, too many folks just wait until their current contract expires and say, “Oh shit. I have to get a real job now.” Others just robotically keep signing papers every few years, sleepwalking from tour to tour until they’ve ended up having a military career without ever consciously deciding to.

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