Fight or flight

I am disturbed by the article printed on Oct. 17, “Once on tour, now anti-war, student soldier won’t go to Iraq”, detailing how Paul Stoetzel is currently a National Guardsman and yet is fully planning to disobey his commander-in-chief if he should be called into active duty. If he dislikes the idea of war with Iraq, that’s fine, but I am wondering why he stays in the National Guard if he feels this way. The answer came toward the end of the article, when we are told he receives a full tuition benefit for his membership in the National Guard. Of course he doesn’t want to lose that! So in order to pay tuition, he’s willing to take an oath to defend the country and obey his superior officers, but if he’s asked to make good on that oath, he will renege. If this man has any honor in him, he must choose one option or the other. He should either stick to his proclaimed principles and get out of the military, or stick with the oath and fulfill his duty if called upon. Either one is fine by me, but trying to get the best of both worlds destroys both his principles and his oath.

Brennan Platt, graduate student, economics