How many honest professions do you know of where a person could start at a young age and retire with benefits after only twenty years? Remember, I said honest professions so that automatically eliminates politicians. The ones that readily come to mind are law enforcement, fire fighters and military. Most other professions will allow you to retire early after twenty years, but will force you to wait until you are 55 or older before you can start to draw your retirement.
All three of the professions listed require some of them to put their lives on the line for us every day. Law enforcement officers never know when they are going to be confronted in a life and death situation or targeted by some deranged nut case. Fire fighters risk losing their lives every time they enter a burning building or step onto a busy street to help an injured motorist. These men and women are domestic heroes, risking it all for you, me and our loved ones here at home.
Members of the military risk their lives for us on an international front as well as here at home. They don on their uniforms and face enemies the likes we at home have never seen. Once they step out of a tent or barracks, climb into a jeep or tank, their ship leaves port or their plane lifts off the ground, their lives are being placed between Americans and world full of enemies that would love to destroy us.
For many career military personnel, their twenty plus years of serving our country is not just a job, but a life style. They are on call twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, 52 weeks a year for twenty or more years. At a moment’s notice they are expected to drop whatever they are doing and respond to the call of duty of protecting you and me. For many, a military career requires great personal sacrifices, but it’s done for love of country and the desire to protect our nation and our freedoms.
Men and women who give up twenty plus years of their lives for their country should be rewarded with a generous retirement no matter what age they are. Whether thirty-eight years old or sixty-eight years old, their service deserves our thanks, gratitude and the best our nation can offer for retirement.
However, the Paul Ryan—Patty Murray budget plan that was passed by the House last Thursday, has a provision in it that will reduce the retirement benefits for military personnel. Rep. Ryan believes that the cost of living adjustment for all retired military personnel under the age of 62 should be cut 1%. His reasoning is that they are still young enough to get a job and continue working.
I’ve got news for you; we have one of the toughest job markets in history right now. Hundreds of thousands of college graduates are flipping burgers, waiting tables or stocking store shelves because the jobs just aren’t out there. Besides, many military jobs don’t lend themselves to the civilian work place very well. How many civilian jobs that you know of deal with driving a tank, launching mortars and planes or firing torpedoes from a submarine?
Oh sure there are a number of military jobs that do lend themselves to the civilian world, but securing one of those civilian jobs isn’t as easy as many retiring military personnel think. I know some retired military people who landed good paying jobs to go with their military retirement, but I also have heard of others who haven’t. And let’s face, there are a number of military personnel that have a very hard time adapting back into civilian life after twenty years of service.
The retirement pay of an enlisted person is not as high as many people think and in most cases, it’s not enough to survive on. So why should they have their retirement cut because Congress can’t control their own spending?
Instead of cutting benefits to active and retired military, why doesn’t Congress just stop giving billions of dollars to other countries, many of which hate us and want to destroy us! The money that Obama illegally gave to his buddies in Egypt would more than make up for the 1% cost of living adjustment. Aid of any kind begins at home, not overseas. We need to fix our own economy here in the US instead of places like Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. If the US can’t pay its own bills, then it shouldn’t be paying the bills for others.
Unfortunately, many Republicans in the House have betrayed the public interest and voted to pass this horrible budget plan. You know it’s a bad plan when Obama and Democrats are all for it. Before the Senate does the same thing, contact your senator NOW and urge them to vote no. If for no other reason, vote no because of our retired military, we owe it to them.