Happy New Year! Day 17 with no war in Iraq…
Happy New Year Sierra Club Nation! If you’ve been following our blog you know we had a pretty awesome 2011, but as I look out onto the horizon for 2012, get ready to have your socks blown off—if you even want to put ‘em on! From surfing to white water rafting, ice climbing to mountaineering (wear socks!), outdoor festivals for military youth and pushing our lawmakers to ensure that the land we fought for, and our water and air, continue to be pristine and worth the sacrifice for our military and veteran communities, we’ll have plenty of opportunities to get you involved and out on the trail!
People often ask me how they can say thanks meaningfully to we veterans, well jump on board, or rather, meet us at the trail head and we’ll show you first hand!
On this, our 17th day out of Iraq and the beginning of our calendar year, let’s also take a minute to reflect on one of the greatest stimulus packages EVER, in the history of stimulus packages. As my good friend, fellow veteran, and colleague over at Service Nation, Chris Marvin, reminded a group of us right before Christmas, we will have 44,000 troops returning from Iraq. In the next five years, it is estimated 1 million soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines will be separating from service.
How awesome is that?
Our Nation has made a HUGE investment in these men and women: trained them to be leaders, critical thinkers, selfless servers, technicians, specialists, and generalists in the latest technologies. Who would not want just one of these young men or women in their community?
A researcher at the City University of New York, did the math and found that a single soldier in a four year enlistment in the United States Military receives more training and education dollars than what it costs to attend Harvard University as an undergraduate for four years. So what does that mean? It means that our small towns, cities, rural areas, and suburbs will be receiving 1 million of the highest trained, most educated men and women in just five years!
Get excited Sierra Club Nation, and help get America excited for the stimulus that should come when your town get’s the equivalent of an Ivy League educated real American hero. Think of what we’ve done, but more importantly, think of what we can do…and will do!
Have a great year Sierra Club Nation; we’ll see you on the trail!
~Stacy Bare, OIF Veteran
Military Families and Veteran Representative to the Sierra Club
"Helping America's Military and Veteran Community experience the freedom of the land they defend"