The US shouldn’t have a military parade

A military parade doesn’t represent peace or hope.


spoilt.exile, via Flickr, creative commons

A military parade will do nothing to inspire hope in America.

President Trump received five draft deferments during the Vietnam War for bone spurs in his heel while continuing to play football, tennis, and golf in 1968. President Trump mocked Senator and veteran John McCain saying “[McCain’s] not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like the people that weren’t captured.” President Trump was silent for two weeks when four American Special Forces soldiers were killed in action in Niger and when he addressed the news, he immediately turned to former presidents criticizing that they refused to acknowledge the families of slain soldiers. These actions and others are indicative of a pattern of disrespect towards the military.

Last year, President Trump attended the Bastille Day parade in France. Jets flew and soldiers marched down the street to celebrate the turning point of the French Revolution. Recently, Trump demanded a similar event from the Pentagon. Trump wants a top-notch parade with the biggest tanks, the fastest jets, and the deadliest rockets. This is not to respect the military but rather to boost his own ego.

Time after time, Trump felt obligated to reaffirm his authority; he fears even the smallest dent on his image as a leader of the free world, a billionaire, and a tough guy. He wants unconditional respect from everyone. As a result, he is sensitive to criticism and lacks responsibility. When the media disagree with Trump, he calls them fake news. When an opposition criticizes Trump, he calls them little, low, crooked, sloppy, crazy, and the list goes on. He always feels the need to appear flawless and strong. He blamed the illegal immigrants for his popular vote loss. He blamed the opposition party for the recent government shutdown. However, during the 2013 government shutdown, he clarified the president is always responsible for government shutdowns saying that “I really think the pressure is on the president.” He has always put people below him and boasted his intelligence; he constantly brags about his IQ and his education.

It is undeniable that the United States has a dominant military. The commander-in-chief doesn’t have to prove his overpowering force.”

— Alex Kang

This demand for a military parade perfectly depicts his insecurity. Recent global affairs have been tough for an egoistic figure like Trump; Kim Jong-Un called Trump a dotard. It didn’t hurt his reputation, but it certainly hurt his feelings. Through this parade, he’s seeking a way to prove his power to the world.

It is undeniable that the United States has a dominant military; U.S. defense spending outnumbers the next eight countries combined. The commander-in-chief doesn’t have to prove his overpowering force. If he wants to prove himself to be the leader of the free world, his priority should be to secure world peace. A military parade doesn’t represent peace or hope. Tanks and bombs represent violence and terror. Messages of the president always have an everlasting impact on the international community. President Trump should decide what his message should be. Peace or violence.

Time Magazine predicted the cost of the parade to be around $22 million. If President Trump truly intends to show respect for the military, this budget could be spent on areas in need. According to the RAND Center for Military Health Policy Research, at least 20% of the veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan suffer from either major depression or PTSD. According to SAMHSA, only 50% of  returning veterans will receive mental health treatment. According to the Department of Housing and Urban Development, ? of homeless men and nearly ¼ of homeless adults have served in the armed forces. Although $22 million couldn’t solve all of these issues, it certainly could help improve mental institutions and other facilities in need.