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The Cavalier

A military parade: brilliant idea or child’s play?

Alex Nabaum, The New York Times

Alex Nabaum, The New York Times

Sarah Gordon, Opinion Section Editor

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In the wake of endless news, it almost seemed nice when Trump suggested the idea of hosting a military parade. However, when researching the current military situation, one can see that the idea goes along with a nice eye-roll.

At the moment there are active troops across the globe, still fighting to protect this country, as well as the well-being of our allies. Pew Research Center reports  there was a total of “1.3 million total active-duty U.S. military personnel in 2016” with “193,442 – or 15% – deployed overseas.”

On top of this, according to the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, the US military budget is $611 billion dollars. This is more than the amount China, Saudi Arabia, Russia, United Kingdom, India, France, and Japan spend, combined. Those six countries all follow closely behind the US in quality and size of military. However, the US still trumps all of these nations by such a significant number.

There is no doubt in mind the US has built its military to be the most powerful in the entire globe. A vast majority of Americans do appreciate the effort put in by their military. After 9/11 there has been minimal need to embrace the work done by the military, given how much they put forth to this country.  A parade would simply be a costly event that serves no better purpose than to flaunt the power the US military.

To celebrate the military at this time could not be easily justified. The New York Times Editorial Board wrote that this parade would be expensive, and that “when the Pentagon is complaining that its $700 billion annual budget is inadequate, Congress is cutting vital programs, the State Department is being eviscerated and a Republican tax cut for the wealthy has added billions of dollars to the deficit.” Considering predictions of the US deficit reaching $1 trillion by 2019, a parade just adds to the pile of money.

Trump was inspired by the Bastille Day parade, a military parade held in France annually on July 14. Other countries who regularly host military parades include China, Russia, and North Korea: all countries with much different cultures, and governments who like to ensure their power over the people.

It appears that Trump wants a way to ensure his dominance upon the country, to assert his position as president, and this is just another way he is doing so. In creating this parade he is trying to have fun, while hurting the country. This simply is child’s play with greater impact. There is no need to plan and host a military parade; the time is not right.

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A military parade: brilliant idea or child’s play?