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Military, schools should get back to basic mission
Name a social cause and it’s likely to find its way into a taxpayer-funded entity.
From famed atheist Madalyn Murray O’Hair who successfully removed prayer from the classroom to today’s controversy over transgender bathrooms, public schools have provided a platform for those seeking to make social change.
Some of that change — integration, accommodation for disabilities and special education for example — are sorely needed. Others stretch popular consensus to the breaking point.
Students pay the price when the latest social issue overshadows their purpose for being in school — education and the process of learning.
Is it any wonder that charter and parochial schools, as well as homeschooling, are increasingly popular?
Many of the same arguments can be made for the military, in which too much energy is expended trying to meet social edicts that distract from the primary mission of protecting our country.
The military led the way on integration in the 1940s, but it also has been embroiled in issues such as President Clinton’s “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, to open acceptance of homosexuality and transgender issues.
The most notable case of the latter was Chelsea Manning, a former U.S. Army soldier court-martialed in July 2013 and sentenced to 35 years in prison after disclosing nearly 750,000 military and diplomatic documents to WikiLeaks while serving as an intelligence analyst in Iraq.
Born Bradley Edward Manning, she said she had a female gender identity since childhood and underwent hormone replacement therapy. President Obama, commuted her sentence to nearly seven years served before he left office.
Today’s announcement by President Trump that transgender personnel will no longer be accepted in the military is highly unlikely to end the issue, but there are more productive ways to establish national policy.
The military that protects our nation’s security, as well as the educational system that protects our country’s future, are too important to be disrupted by experimentation.