My time at Santa Barbara High School working with Truth in Recruitment was satisfying and it felt like we (Lisha) and I made a big splash. Many students were at the table and we spoke to a great many and had several penetrating conversations. The students were open to what we had to say and they answered our many prodding questions about what they know about the military and about their plans for the future. We were badly needed and outnumbered, so it was nice to have Americorp there as “an alternative” in addition to reminding them at SBCC is free for them. I greatly appreciated all the work that Kate and Lisha have done with all the games, the posters and information. The buttons, literature and games were magnets, and provided an “in” into their thinking about the military and whether they wish to join it. Quick suggestion: I would have a poster with at least six alternatives to the military. I was unsure whether or not the game which is a “wheel” was ever used, most of the students did not know the people on it. Perhaps a few basics on “THE MILITARY” and its environmental record, since all the students indicated concern for the environment.
I found the informational meeting at the Santa Maria Public Library, Santa Maria High School Family Forum; Military Recruiters On Campus, inspiring and very revealing of primordial sentiments held by loving parents and community members resistant to the presence of military recruiting tactics on Santa Maria Joint Unified School District campuses. Testimonials from event sponsors: Truth in Recruitment, Mixteco Indigena Community Organizing Project/ El Proyecto Mixteco/Indígena Organización Comunitaria (MICOP), and Importa, as well as high school staff, parents and students were exceptional, each giving their own point of view of where emphasis should be focused to further the well-being of the students. Excessive military recruiter presence was demonstrated during the evening in a power point and digital recordings.
Testimony was markedly in favor of providing students with the skills and resources necessary to improve their developing reasoning powers, abilities, and career formation. In order to achieve this, attendees requested to be protected from the leering tactics of beguiling military job classifications and so-called “benefits” invented by military recruiting professionals. The need for a philosophy of peace was expressed by attendees, and as might be expected a testimonial was given that clearly shows the disillusionment that awaits uninformed enlistees. One example was given by the parent of a 19 year old son now awaiting orders from his post in Japan to Korea, a fretful status unwanted by both this new recruit and his parents.
–Michael Cervantes, Vietnam War veteran, infantry, and Veteran for Peace member
The Black History Month Celebration at Pioneer Park in Santa Maria on Saturday 2/17/18 went beautifully; the site in a tree sheltered open spaced field was sweet and the many people we met, too! We talked with countless folks about what Truth In Recruitment is about and doing, plus handouts, buttons and wristbands were offered. And of course, everybody got given a flyer about the upcoming Santa Maria High School Family Forum scheduled for Tuesday 2/27/18 about Military Recruiters On Campus.
On Saturday, Truth In Recruitment was among some 28 participating community organizations including CAUSE, Democratic Club of Santa Maria Valley, Lompoc Valley, AGIF Education Foundation, United Domestic Workers Union, the NAACP, the Girl Scouts of America and others. All providing informational pamphlets, services, membership sign-up lists and other resources to help educate the public.
There was live music with a band, dancers and speakers including keynote speaker Congressman Salud Carbajal and newly elected 3rd District Supervisor Joan Hartmann. Capping the event, Black History Month celebrants were generously provided with a delicious Santa Maria BBQ and the successful day was unanimously enjoyed by all.
This was a tough group to talk to about Truth in Military Recruitment at U.S. High Schools, especially in SB North County. I thought Kate & Lisha did a great Job. The majority of the audience were either retired or current Air Force Personnel, I assume as Officer’s or non-commissioned officers. They were highly educated with adult college educated children. There was one High school age female whose testimony was that Military Recruiters where an ever present entity in her High School. I believe she was a senior at a Lompoc High school.
The audience had testimonies that the service had been good for them. However they also spoke about the racism inside and outside the military service. I spoke to them about my experience with
Veterans For Peace, Arlington West, SBCC Teen Memorial and EOPS at SBCC. I tried to relate to them the Cost of War, especially the human cost. The Teen Memorial or Teen Cemetery tried to reveal a name and face, of the 18 & 19 year olds that had perished in the Iraq & Afghanistan wars. We tried to convey to high school & college aged students the lost human potential to their families,
community, and nation. These young men & women could have been the future leaders of their communities, cities, states and nation.
I also tried to explain that the high school students of yesterday & today have the right to know that they have alternatives to military service. College is an alternative to all high school students. Not just to the “shinny Pennies”. EOPS at the California Community Colleges is an opportunity for all students. They have vocational & transfer programs to 4 year colleges. One does not have to be a stellar student to attend. The high light of the night for me was when a former SBCC EOPS student of mine approached me after our presentation. He was a professional working and living in Santa Maria and completing his Phd at UCSB. He was in EOPS and a tutor at SBCC then transferred to UCSB where he obtained his BA & MA. Over all this was a satisfying presentation!
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2018
5:30 – 6:00 pm — Pupusas dinner
6:00 – 7:30 pm — Forum
Location: Santa Maria Public Library, Shepard Hall
421 So. McClelland Street, Santa Maria, CA 94358
Santa Maria High School teachers and families have voiced concern about military recruiters on campus and the presence of a National Guard Recruiter, whose office is named W.A.R. (We All Rise), on campus.
In a cooperative effort to address these concerns, this forum will review:
- The history of this military recruiter presence,
- The ethics of a military recruiter having an office on school grounds,
- A family’s right to protect their children’s privacy, and
- How students and parents would like to address this issue.
There also will be discussion of recruiters on campus, in general.
This forum is co-sponsored by the Mixteco Indigena Community Organizing Project called El Proyecto Mixteco Indigena Comunitaria (MICOP), the Fund for Santa Barbara, Importa, the McCune Foundation and Truth in Recruitment.
You are cordially invited to join us! Language translation and dinner will be provided.
Foro Familiar para Santa Maria High School:
Reclutadores Militares en el campus
Fecha y Horario: Martes, Febrero 27, 2018
5:30 – 6:00 pm — Pupusas cena
6:00 – 7:30 pm — Foro
Ubicacion: Biblioteca Publica de Santa Maria, Shepard Hall
421 So. McClelland Street, Santa Maria, CA 94358
Los padres y maestros de Santa Maria High School han expresado una intranquilidad con el reclutador de la Guardia Nacional. El cual tiene una oficina personal dentro del plantel educativo.
En un esfuerzo por restaurar la calma de los padres este foro hablara sobre:
- El origen de esta oficina de reclutamiento,
- Es apropiado tener esta oficina,
- Información sobre los derechos de privacidad de los estudiantes y
- Que hacer respecto a esta oficina.
También habrá una discusión general sobre la presencia de reclutadores en los planteles educativos.
Este foro esta copatrocinado por El Proyecto Mixteco Indigena Comunitario (MICOP), el Fund for Santa Barbara, Importa, la fundación McCune y por Truth in Recruitment.
¡Usted está cordialmente invitado! Interpretación de idiomas y la cena serán provistos.
Does a Military career empower womyn?
This the question that Truth in Recruitment asked the people of Santa Barbara, Saturday, during the womyns rally?
We definitely received a variety of valuable answers, nonetheless it was clear that at the core of all of the responses was a genuine interest in the empowerment of girls and womyn. Participating in the rally was a humbling opportunity to acknowledge and receive validation from, other organizations who are pushing towards the similar direction of change. Witnessing, young womyn of numerous backgrounds express themselves unapologetically was priceless and truly motivating. It fed the fire that motivates Truth in Recruitment to share our message with as many people as possible, especially during a time in which:
- Multiple branches of US military want to increase the recruitment of women to 10% of the armed forces.
- 1 in 3 women have experienced sexual assault while serving in the military.
- Youth of color and low economic status are disproportionately targeted.
In addition to the march renewing our social responsibly this was my daughter’s first demonstration, since we didn’t actually get to march. It was so beautiful to see her engage will all the nearby attendees, and their reaction towards a 13 month old encourages me to bring her along ALWAYS. We also ran into some of the mom friends “hermanas” that we’ve met in this journey ; who are raising their children with intention.Thanks for being such an awesome example! Lastly,
to add to this day’s supportive ambiance our friends from Veterans for Peace Joy and Gilbert Robledo helped us table and promoted our literature and resistance buttons. Can’t wait for what next year’s gathering will bring!
Michael, Elizabeth, and Fernando, of Truth in Recruitment, tabled at a Carpinteria High School community service fair sponsored by SB County Partners in Education on Friday December 1, 2017. The Wheel of Fortune was themed “Resisters and Veterans.” Michael, himself a veteran of the Vietnam War, discussed whistleblower and veteran Chelsea Manning’s impact with one inquisitive student.
Several students wrote in the comment book, based on a prompt about Rosa Parks’ role in Civil Rights (December 1 was the anniversary of her being arrested for not giving up her seat on a segregated bus). They would take stands against racism, for peace and in favor of net neutrality. Students also participated in the penny poll exercise indicating what priorities should receive government funding (with each penny representing one million dollars). Education, humanitarian aid, and environmentalism were popular; however two students put their entire $10 million in the jar marked “military” which then led to a lively debate.
One student told them he was signed up for the Delayed Entry Program (DEP), which meant that he could be heading to boot camp after he graduated. (See links on this website for DEP cancellation forms) Fernando spoke with him about his options and the student left with literature about getting out of the program should he change his mind. By the end, many students were intrigued enough to request literature that offered alternative perspectives on the military.