Why Should You Join the Military? (Top 10 Reasons)

I will not dwell on the patriotic theme in this article. Or the possibility of being deployed to places like Iraq and Afghanistan. Everybody knows about those aspects. My objective here is to outline why it might make sense for you or your child to consider a military career, or to at least make a commitment for awhile. If you’re a grandmother, it’s too late. You probably won’t get drafted.

I’m not telling anybody anything I didn’t do myself. And the G.I. Bill was the primary reason I graduated from college. Me, a real screwball in high school. The military does have a way of maturing total screwballs.

“Our bombs are smarter than the average high school student. At least they can find Kuwait.” A. Whitney Brown, during First Gulf War (not to be confused with Whitney Houston who married Bobby Brown)

Okay, let’s get down to it. Why should you join the military?

(Public domain pictures are courtesy of www.izismile.com)

The women. They’re everywhere, they’re everywhere.

Every military force in the world has amongst its midst incredibly beautiful women in uniform. I mean, is there anything hotter than a lady with a gun? This is my rifle, this is my gun. This is for shooting, this is for fun.

Approximately 20% of the military population is female, both in the United States and most other countries.

I will attempt to illustrate this concept of beauty in a military uniform (it sure beats a French maid outfit, ‘eh?) as this article moves along. Now what if you are a woman, you might ask. So don’t ask, don’t tell.

The food. You like eating for free, right? All you want for free? Talk about the ultimate smorgasbord. I will admit I developed a hatred for liver and onions in the military. But that’s just me.

Despite the quality and quantity of food, I remember the time the bad lieutenant (Actually, I think he might have been a captain. I can’t remember. They all look the same to me.) sent me out off base to get him and his buddies some burgers while they were playing poker. I’m driving this Jeep with no doors and it was storming like crazy and I almost rolled the dang thing over going around a corner. I swear, I could reach out and touch the ground. He had the nerve to complain about the burgers being a little cold and wet when I got back.

According to most nutritional experts, the military actually provides a good diet of healthy food. Really. The spaghetti looks good, eh?

Free medical care. If you get shot or wind up with shrapnel in your butt from a mortar (It did happen to one of my buddies while he was asleep in his bunk. Talk about the easy way to get a Purple Heart.) all your medical care is on the house. But what about when you get out? Same thing. It’s usually all paid for.

My best friend served 4 years in the Air Force way back when. In the past several years he has had open heart surgery, knee surgery, and back surgery. All paid for. Oh, free glasses too. And he is always going to the VA hospital for this test or that test. Next he’ll be needing a hearing aid and a prosthetic penis.

Now, if you’re a veteran who makes a lot of money, you may be subject to a co-payment, so then it wouldn’t all be paid for. Now me, I try not to go for medical treatment, so as to save the government money. Not to mention, the doctor will find something wrong with you, whether there is or not.

Housing. Yeah, I know, nobody wants to live in a foxhole. If you are not residing in government-provided housing that is on the house (no pun intended), you receive what’s called the BAH (Basic Allowance for Housing), which is based on geographical duty location, pay grade, and dependency status.

You can buy a home with a VA loan with 0% down. You can save hundreds of dollars every month by eliminating the need for private mortgage insurance required with conventional loans since the government guarantees it. And the VA loans typically have lower interest rates.


Education benefits.

There is the GI Bill, of course, but there is a lot more to it than that. If you take courses while you are in the service, 100 % of your tuition is paid. If you join the military after you have acquired student loans, you likely can get help paying those if you attended school on an approved Perkins, Stafford, or other Department of Education Guaranteed Student Loan.

My daughter is a high school senior contemplating what college to attend. She has military recruiters soliciting her. What they say is that she can not only go to college for free, she can get paid while she is doing it. Unfortunately, I have not been able to talk her into it (yet). If you have any interest whatsoever in the military footing your bill for college instead of you and your parents, you should talk to a military recruiter.

Retirement benefits. Would you prefer to retire at 48 or 62 or at what age? Let me give you an example to illustrate the advantages of retirement from the military. An individual who entered the service in 1981 at age 18 and who retired in 2011 (30 years) as an E-8 (First Sergeant) now receives a monthly retirement benefit of approximately $3600. That is projected to double in 20 years to approximately $7200. Or you can take a cash bonus of $30,000 and a lesser monthly amount.

In the private sector, there are age requirements for taking your pension. It depends on the company. Some let you take your pension at 55, but not many.

Training/careers. There are thousands of different jobs for enlisted personnel and officers. My daughter took the ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) last year, and the recruiters discussed with her the results in terms of what careers she would be best suited for.

Many of the careers are similar to civilian life. For example, you have “Arts, Communications, Media and Design Careers – Enlisted” for which the description reads “Arts, Communications, Media and Design enlisted personnel are the creative people responsible for the media associated with the Military. This is an important part of communicating military messages to people all over the world. Service members in this field create everything ... Possible Military Job Titles: Printing Specialist; Photographic Specialist; Musician; Graphic Designer and Illustrator; Broadcast Journalist and Newswriter; Combat Correspondent; Audiovisual and Broadcast Technician; Public Affairs Specialist

Then you have “Counseling, Social Work and Human Services Careers – Enlisted” for which the description reads “Human Services enlisted personnel provide counseling and spiritual support for servicemembers. They work with psychologists, social workers and chaplains to organize treatment, classes or religious services. This career field involves a lot of communication and organization and provides many opportunities ... Possible Military Job Titles: Caseworker or Counselor; Religious Program Specialist.

Shopping at the PX. Also known as the military post store and commissary. Active military, their dependents and family members, and any veteran can shop there and save about 30%, which is basically at or a little above cost.

Now you can even shop at home and pick up at the nearest store, or in some cases have what you purchased delivered. The All-Service Exchange Online Store websites deliver tax-free shopping to authorized customers in every corner of the globe.

When you are in the service you naturally get free uniforms, both for work and dress, as frequently pictured herein.

American Legion and VFWs. I can’t believe how cheap the drinks are in these places. Food too. And there is usually some sober person there who can give you good advice on whatever.

My local American Legion has NFL Sunday Ticket and I would go over there, not to drink of course or hang out with the groupies, but to watch Steeler games if I couldn’t get them on my TV. These organizations provide a plethora of useful information for veterans regarding medical issues and other service-related matters.

Financial security. Not only because of what has been previously mentioned. You also have such things as life insurance (Active-duty service members may select up to $400,000 in Service Group Life Insurance at a cost of only $27 a month) and other benefits. There are tax advantages of being in the military. Just to mention one, your pay while you are serving in a combat zone is not taxed. There is a Thrift Savings Plan similar to a 401 (k).

But what is the greatest financial security concern of most individuals? It’s probably that you will become unemployed, right? And can’t find another job, at least not one at a comparable salary.

Not to worry, the military is hiring!

A Marine and a sailor were sitting in a bar one day arguing over which was the superior service.

After a swig of beer the Marine says, “Well, we had Iwo Jima.”

Arching his eyebrows, the sailor replies, “'We had the Battle of Midway.”

“Not entirely true,” responded the Marine. “Some of those pilots were Marines, in fact, Henderson Field on Guadalcanal was named after a Marine pilot killed at the Battle of Midway.”

The sailor responds, “Point taken.”'

The Marine then says, “We Marines were born at Tunn Tavern!”

The sailor, nodding agreement, says, ”But we had John Paul Jones.”

The argument continued until the sailor comes up with what he thinks will end the discussion. With a flourish of finality he says, “The Navy invented sex.”

The Marine replies, “That is true, but it was the Marines who introduced it to women.”

Even more reasons to join the military!

Write a book about your military experiences and become a best-selling author. You don’t even have to be Hemingway or even have any writing experience. Get somebody who can write to help you if necessary. Right on ‘er I mean write on!

So many military personnel and veterans have incredible stories that just need to be told, for money and fame.

Just be careful you don't get assassinated by the C.I.A. before Oprah makes your book famous.

More by this Author


37 comments

SGT Volkin 4 years ago

That last point is a good one...the military is always hiring!

SGT Volkin

"Be Prepared for Basic Training"

http://www.UltimateBasicTraining.com


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Hey SGT Volkin, you got any ideas how I can talk my daughter into joining the military?

She's pretty (see my hub "What Do You Tell a Guy Who Is Shopping for a Prom Dress"),she's smart (National Honor Society), and tough (Hustle Award for her state playoff basketball team).

I have no doubt that she would do well in Basic Training (and even better with your course no doubt).


valleyforge84 profile image

valleyforge84 4 years ago

Funny how every picture is of military women even when you are talking about the other aspects of joining. But we do need people to join. Good hub. voted up.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

valleyforge84, can you think of a better way to influence young men to join the military than to focus on women?

I see you were in the Navy. Were you ever on a boat with no women? Even if you were, I don't think the Navy sends a ship out to sea these days with absolutely no women. Unless they know it's going to sink.


david hodges 4 years ago

another benefit of being in military is you can join usaa and get cheaper auto ins among other things.ive had auto ins with them for 20 yrs and never could find anything cheaper


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

David, I have noticed an ad for USAA on my "What Should You Do if You Are in an Accident?" hub.

I'll have to do a quote and see how USAA compares to my present insurer.

Also, I am writing a hub entitled "What Is the Best Auto Insurance Company, and Why?"


Sarahhh666 profile image

Sarahhh666 4 years ago from near Philly

Hey, I know an advantage you didn't mention! If you were in the military you get extra points for the Civil Service Test. I know my oldest brother did. Which is why he got a job at the Post Office.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

That's something I definitely should have included, Sarahhh666. It's more important than the food. Not the women though.

Not only federal civil service jobs like the Post Office, but state jobs like police and firefighters also.

Here's an interesting article about a female Marine who became a PA State Trooper. This also looks like a good site for info on jobs for veterans:

http://www.gijobs.com/patrol-officer-pennsylvania-...

Note that you get 10 preferential points for being a veteran. Also you can take your pension 5 years early if you are a veteran.

So Sarahhh666, are you going to join the Marines?


Chet W 4 years ago

Im a retire Marine and my son is in the Marines now.Active military can get many discounts from patriotic companies like on new cars.He just bought a new car and got the discount.Funny joke about the Marines introduce sex to women.God bless the military (especially Marines)!!!


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Hey Chet, yes I see in the new car ads in my local paper that the dealers are giving extra discounts to servicemen and women.

You know, I think to be really patriotic the auto companies should give free cars to veterans. What do you think about that? Especially the German and Japanese car makers.


FreddyM profile image

FreddyM 4 years ago from Everywhere USA

Excellent information. I retired as a CW4 and my pension is over $5,000 a month. That enables me to do whatever I want these days. I have no regrets about my military service. There are good times and bad times. Just like everything else in life.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Hey Freddy, you shoulda been a general. I hear they make around $15,000 a month.

So are you paying Uncle Sam real soon for working for Uncle Sam?

I was talking to a guy the other day who told me he served during Vietnam (but wasn't actually in Vietnam), and he said he is getting a pension solely due to the fact he served during wartime and is over 65. He spent two years in the Army due to being drafted. I can't attest to the accuracy of his statement, other than he said what he said.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Here's a new hub concerning serving in the military that I thought was excellent:

"God Bless The Troops But I Pray My Son Will Never Enlist"

http://hubpages.com/politics/I-Support-The-Troops-...


krsharp05 profile image

krsharp05 4 years ago from 18th and Vine

BLACKANDGOLDJACK...I have to tell you, I was really nervous about reading your comment but Thank you. I appreciate it. I like your hub as well. It brought back a lot of good memories and made me laugh too. Best of luck with your daughter!


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Nervous, krsharp05? I can't understand why.

My daughter tells me all her classmates in school think I'm intimidating. Not so much the girls now because they spend the night and I make them cookies and stuff.

So my daughter left about 15 minutes ago to go drive 4-wheelers with 2 dudes in her class. I wasn't very happy about it. Those recreational vehicles make me real nervous. My best friend died in a snowmobile accident 5 years ago. Too fast and too many trees.

There are many activities in life that are dangerous I guess, the military and 4-wheelers being two of them. At least she would get paid for being in the military.

Oh, and you do get extra pay for being in a combat zone.


mts1098 profile image

mts1098 4 years ago from InsideTheManCave

This was both fun and informative. While it is too late for me to have a military career I view the forces with a different perspective now. It must have been fun to ride the Jeep without doors...I still need to try that one...cheers


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Well mts1098, I have the half doors on my Wrangler I can just pop off. This becomes necessary when I am stopped by the police because I can't get the plastic window open due to the zipper being stripped.

The Jeep is probably the most recognizable vehicle in history, due primarily to its military connection. Although the Jeep is the oldest SUV and the best, by far, as most Wrangler owners would certainly agree.

Hey, there's another reason to join the military. You might get to drive a Jeep!


mts1098 profile image

mts1098 4 years ago from InsideTheManCave

Still not sure I can join the military but I will watch MASH and have a cocktail :)


Swea'Pea 4 years ago

"Wha's a Jeep?" The Jeep got it's name from Eugene the Jeep of Popeye fame.

Of course Popeye the sailor was a military man and dang proud of it.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Hey Swea'Pea, so what do you drink when you're watching Popeye? Spinach?

There you go, mts1098, one can express fondness for the military by watching a military-related flick with the proper liquid refreshment.

I prefer watching Heartbreak Ridge with a six-pack.

Audie Murphy movies are good too, since he won the Medal of Honor. I will be featuring him and Clint and other heroes in my next hub.


Noelnthaly profile image

Noelnthaly 4 years ago from Fairbanks, Alaska

Well what can I say, my active duty wife is pretty smokin' hot so... I guess you're right!


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

That's what I'm talkin' about, NoeInthaly!

But just so I can absolutely verify what you are saying is true, let's see a pic of her in uniform with her gun. Or a camouflage bikini.


eddiecarrara profile image

eddiecarrara 4 years ago from New Hampshire

I was never in the military, but I wish I had joined when I had the chance, in high school I need my head screwed on a bit tighter, it practically fell off, joining the military would have pointed my life in a whole new direction. As far as talking my kids in to joining, well, I'm in you shoes, I can't even bring up the subject, so good luck with your daughter.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Yes indeed, Eddie, the military has a way of making a boy a man. Or a girl a woman.

My daughter is developing a fondness for guns, so maybe there is hope for her yet.


Nymira profile image

Nymira 4 years ago

LOL @ YOUR COMMENT!


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Nymira, what comment are you talking about? If it's the one about my daughter developing a fondness for guns, I'll post a pic of her with her gun that is really funny.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

My very first statement in this hub is “I will not dwell on the patriotic theme in this article” and I didn’t. But this being Memorial Day, I’ll wax patriotic for a moment if I may. Of course I may. I’ll say any damn thing I want. That’s why I’m arbitrarily and capriciously banned from the forums on HubPages.

I am a combat veteran. I say “Thanks to God for our patriotic military personnel!” In fact, there is a forum topic going strong by that very title started by Brenda Durham. Unfortunately, I can’t post on it, because like I said, I’m banned from the forums.

God bless America and our fighting men and women!

Hey, if any of you heathens want to come here and object to what I said, please do. I got the fighting spirit today. All the slippery slimy ones better watch out. I’m waiting on my son to come pick me up in his camouflage canoe so we can go fish. Jesus does love his fishermen, you know. No, I guess you heathens wouldn’t know.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

Update June 5, 2012:

Well, my 30 day ban ended, and I was soon arbitrarily and capriciously BANNED again for posts I made on the "Thank God for our patriotic military personnel!" thread.

So I wrote a new hub:

http://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/Combat-Vet...

Combat Veteran Banned for Defending "Thanks to God for our patriotic military personnel!"


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

I just updated this hub with another reason to join the military.

And I will be adding many more soon.


John Mickey 4 years ago

It encourages to join the military to youth.

http://www.milkcreek.com/


Wow 4 years ago

They left out the part of 19000 rapes last year. Only 10% of rapes are reported that is a fact. You do the math.


Moses k 4 years ago

am a boy who just turn 20 years in july, am living in zambia.i preffer working in army but due to like of supporty,have no way to joing.i was seving as a KADET at school and i have a fully,a complite idea in it.how can i joing coz i like this work plz.


BLACKANDGOLDJACK profile image

BLACKANDGOLDJACK 4 years ago from Blitzburgh area Author

First, Moses, are you concerned about being raped like Wow said? Lawrence of Arabia was raped, you know. If you are not concerned about being raped, go to the site John Mickey mentioned and buy some Civil War clothes.


Embolene 3 years ago

Okay, I'm a graduating senior in high school and I'm really doubting going to college, all my high school years I've been a screw up, and a few months back I started to really think about joining the military. My parents are totally against me joining but I'm almost sure that's what I want to do, any advice?


do it 2 years ago

Do it!!!


AYITEY FRANCIS AGBAH 2 years ago

I AM IN GHANA CAN I JOIN YOUR MILITARY


Johnd978 2 years ago

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