How Real Americans Support Our Troops
Military recruiting is a very difficult assignment; in fact, that's why Operation Yellow Elephant was founded back in 2005: to encourage those eligible to serve who support what Our President, and Our Country, are trying to accomplish overseas, at least to consider volunteering for military service. Be A Man! Enlist!
At least those in the travel industry are doing what they can. From Itineraries in the New York Times:
Road Warriors Recruit for MilitaryAnd, of course, Americans let our military personnel know what they think:
[ . . . ]
On board, a uniform creates another experience entirely. “If they have an empty first-class seat, they’ll demand you come up front,” Colonel [Rickey] Grabowski, [52, former commanding officer of the district office in Garden City, now the chief of staff for the Marine Corps Eastern recruiting region in Parris Island, S.C.,] said. “A lot of us laugh about that.” A recent policy change allows recruiters to keep airline mileage accrued on military business for personal use, Captain [Adrian] Rankine-Galloway, the public affairs officer for the First Marine Corps district office in Garden City, N.Y., which handles recruitment for the northeastern United States,] said.
Col. Wesley Preston Miller, 42, public relations director for the Air Force’s National Media Outreach office in New York, said that when in uniform, “from the baggage department, you get more leeway” on weight restrictions, though that has recently tightened, and recruiters must show military travel documents. On the ground, he said, hotels sometimes upgrade recruiters from their reserved rooms. “Obviously a person never asks, but if they do it, you feel like a king.”
While nearly all the recruiters interviewed said they were generally well accepted in their travels, protesters of American military policy sometimes single them out. [ . . . ]
Some recruiters said well-wishers can be another obstacle, albeit a welcome one. Sgt. First Class William Wagoner, 34, who works with Sergeant [First Class Derek T.] Price, of the Army Accessions Support Brigade at Fort Knox, Kentucky, said that when he is in uniform, “I can’t get through an airport without shaking 12 to 15 hands.” Sometimes, he added, “I am almost late for my flight.”