Saturday, March 26, 2005

unfortunate ways of speaking metaphorically about a stressful job

From a story in the NYT on the hard time Army recruiters are having these days:
'We call this the pressure plate, like on a land mine,' he said, pointing to the recruiter patch on his uniform. 'If you push it too hard, we'll explode.'

His wife, like spouses in California and elsewhere, is furious at what she sees as the Army's lack of support.

'What we are doing is good; recruiting is good and important work,' she said. 'But the fact of the matter is that it's killing our soldiers.'
"Not literally," she did not add. "It's not literally killing the recruiters, it's just destroying their morale. The only people who literally get killed are the recruits. That and whoever the recruits kill, I guess."


Anonymous said...

With the added commentary, it's almost like reading The Onion!

jeremy said...

The Onion is regularly inspired by JFW. It has been based in Madison, you know, and it still have staff that bugs my telephone and hacks into my e-mail just looking for witty stuff.

Corrie said...

You forgot to include deaths of people killed by the insurgents motivated by the deaths of the people the recruits killed, and the subsequent deaths of the insurgents when the recruits have to go kill them, and the deaths of the suicide bombers radicalized by the deaths of the insurgents, and the suicide bomber's victims.

Anonymous said...

On the topic of military recruiting,I just read a very interesting (and brief) article on the fact that U.S. recruiters now have access to the private records of all Public H.S. students, for purposes of recruiting granted by an embedded clause under "No Child Left Behind", UNLESS they a) happen to know about this and b)submit a letter to the school denying this access. You can read it here: