Saturday, November 28, 2009

Military Entitlement

This is a subject that really irks me...a lot. I know some may disagree and I can respect that and will respect that but since this is my blog, I can and will write about MY perspective on the matter.

One of the people I have on my FB is married to a person in the military, okay, I have a lot of people on my FB who are members of the military, so that was kind of a stupid statement.

One of my FB "friends" who is married to a member of the military posted on their status something about how ticketmaster didn't appreciate the military because their discount had them in the nosebleed section. That statement really rubbed me the wrong way (obviously enough to have me blogging about it).

This isn't the first time a family member of the military has made a comment like that. And it bothers me, this warped sense of entitlement.

A few months ago on the Fort Hood MWR fan page (MWR = Morale, Welfare, & Recreation) they had posted about dance classes and then listed the cost. Immediately there were responses about what a rip off and how they didn't care about military families and didn't you know we didn't make that much money and what happened to taking care of us...oh it made me sick to read these comments. I have heard similar comments at different stores, on different forums, in different settings. "Don't they know know what my husband is doing for their freedom, the least they could do is give me a discount."

Nowhere in any enlistment contract does it state that a military ID card entitles you to free stuff or discounts on everything or anything for that matter. The many awesome organizations and companies that do offer a discount or free items do so out of the kindness of their hearts, with true desire to show appreciation. They do it because they WANT to, not because they HAVE to!

We aren't rolling in the dough, but we make do. If people would stop and think about how good we really have it, they might stop complaining and playing the "woe is me" card. We don't pay for our medical, we get provided housing in one way or another (either actual money or a house to live in). Plus our Soldiers get an additional allowance for food that they never use, I mean let's be honest, the family spends it. Throw in a raise every year, over 3% for the past few years. Throw in another raise every two years based on your time in service. Oh yeah and for the enlisted side of the house, a pretty nice clothing allowance annually that again..Soldiers rarely use on themselves. And yes, it sucks when our troops deploy but additional pay comes in and oh yeah it's all tax-free while deployed. So financially, if you're smart about it, you'll do okay. Oh and if you need help with your budget, the Army can help you with that too by offering free classes for the Soldier and their family.

As you can see, it really bothers me. Now, let me say that yes, I have taken advantage of military discounts such as our Sea World trips, a discount on our hotel room and certainly think it's nice when an organization/company offers a 10% or 20% discount for military but I don't EXPECT it and I don't get upset if they don't offer one. We were blessed that so many wonderful organizations out there do support our troops. Kevin had many who adopted him and sent him lots of great goodies, he was always surprised when people sent him stuff. I was even more surprised when they would include the rest of the family. I can't even express my gratitude. We were surprised because we never expected it.

I'm fully aware of the sacrifices that my husband has made for his country and the citizens who reside here in America. I just don't feel a sense of entitlement to cash in on it.

Let me end on this note...this is in reference to military discounts, not our Veterans Benefits...THAT would be an entirely different perspective, one I'm way more passionate about and that sense of entitlement IS justified!


WolfleyFamily said...

Ditto - completely agree with your frustrations! On a sidenote, I want to put in a plug for Chili's after you mentioned Sea World :) Greg had just come home from Iraq - we'd come straight from the airport to get some dinner with extended family members. Including me, Greg and our two kids, there were 12 of us. I left the table to discreetly to go ask the staff if we could get a military discount on our meal (Greg & I were paying for all of us and SLC isn't a military town - we weren't sure they'd even give a military discount). I'd said Greg just came home from Iraq and we were celebrating (he was still in his uniform). They said they could give us a military discount (I figured it'd be 10% off) - when they brought the bill to us they said they were only going to charge for two meals and the rest were on the house!!

Mommy to those Special Ks said...

GREAT post!!! I totally agree!!!! I LOVE the places that offer Military discounts and we are SO grateful but don't expect it in any way, shape or form!! Most of the time we forget to ask because it's just not in the front of our minds. We definitely do just fine with what we make... no we're not rolling in dough, but we make do... like you said, if we're smart with our money, there's no problem. I am in total agreement with you too on Veteran services! :)

Michelle said...

Awesome post! I totally agree with EVERYTHING you had to say!

Amy said...

I totally agree with you. I love when I ask about a military discount and they have one but its nothing anyone should expect.

SGT Danger said...

Terrific post! I've felt the same way for a long time. I'll enjoy a discount or a freebie as it comes along, but to go along as if I deserve it is just not right. I enlisted knowing what I'd earn, what benefits were promised, and what would be expected of me.