Army Recruitment in the New Economy

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Darryl Robinson, Command Sergeant Major and chief recruiter in New York City area talks about Army recruitment, particularly in minority communities.

Comments [18]

gaetano catelli from manhattan

my forebears were too poor to get a college education save at institutions that were free, such as West Point.


Jul. 20 2009 11:48 PM
Andrew from oklahoma

I know from MY experiences of wearing the uniform I have been respected by more people than when in civi's ( civilian clothes ) and damn sure feel more proud of myself knowing I am doing a good thing and helping make something of MY life. SO yeah, please sit here and bitch and moan and complain and talk shit more and more on the people that make it possible to do so. Glad to know our sacrifices mean so little to you middle class, soap box standing, "I'm better than everyone else", attitude shit heads. Sorry but you have NO right to say the shit you do, when you have never been there, never experienced ANY of it. I had PLENTY of African Americans that I served with day in and day out, we had eachother's backs and we damn sure thought of eachother as brothers because honestly, we were, we are, and i guarantee you if i ever see any of them walkin about, we will always remember our times serving together. So please, talk more shit and go on and on about the hersay you hear on the news, read in the paper, read online and hear from your friends. Please don't bother to go find out for yourself, to actually give a damn about your country. And to think you guys call yourselves Americans. You guys dont even know what it fucking means to be an American. But I'm getting off my soap box now, Later

Jul. 18 2009 01:25 AM
Andrew from oklahoma

I served for 2 years in the ARNG ( Army National Guard ) from being 17 till after I was 19. Now almost 20 I am rejoining and going active duty. The army doesn't "prey" on any certain race, gender, or social background. You all just like to believe in your little conspiracy theories. If someone wants to join because it offers job security, benefits, and a great life teaching, and they are "poor" or "less endowned" or what the hell ever doesn't mean that the army specifically "targeted" them. Yeah, recruiters sometimes bend the truth, but there really is good things you get out of any branch of the military. I have the utmost respect for ANYONE that served and did ANY job in the military, during war or not during war. The thing that pisses me off the most is that these people, including myself, fight for and risk our lives for America, and protect all your freedoms so you can sit here on your little soap boxes for your 15 min of fame while you write on a fuckin blog about how the military does this wrong or does that wrong or whatever you guys get off doing. It is complete shit that you can sit there, talk shit about the military and bitch and complain about shit, but what have YOU done to help your country, pay your respects to the founding fathers, or helped treat others with respect?

Jul. 18 2009 01:25 AM
markBrown from

*** BRIAN ***

Just like YESTERDAY's show, when the lack of taxes paid by companies was discussed (SEE the LAST comment on that segment yesterday:

I told you over 18 months ago that it was a DEPRESSION, (I call it depression 2.0) and that it required a HUGE program (I have a 10 step program) to fix the country.


My proposal:
1) A new MANDATORY service program for those over 17, or graduating high school (whichever is last).

They have a choice of either SERVICE OR Military service for at least three years.

Goals: Service program will focus on JOB TRAINING and SKILLS.

Military option will also focus on
a) career goals
b) de-emphasizing the 'private' (contractor) army.

BOTH military and service options COULD lead to 30 year (lifetime employment)

If a student is headed to school, their service will be done with their school group, and at completion of service (over vacations, etc) will be credited (and negate) college costs.

If a student is not headed to school, their service will be done with a group from their local area.

LOTS of details HERE:
overview :

alternative service here:

Military option:

And again: I wish that the producers and host of this show would understand that I actually figured this out 2-3 years ago.

and that I am NOT a crank, but a visionary.

Jul. 17 2009 01:28 PM

While there's nothing wrong with making an informed decision to enlist, the fact that recruiters so often lie to young people ultimately taints the cause they are promoting:

Jul. 16 2009 11:12 PM
JP from Garden State from NJ


I hate to say it but good marketing. The Military has some smart people in their marketing department. I was bombarded by commercials that tried to pray on your honor for you country. Might work on some 17 olds but not many. How much honor do you have for your country at 17? But now, they arm you with guilt on how to convince your parents who probably have very little respect left for the military and are worried they are sending off their kids to die. Wouldn’t have worked on my dad because he was in the military. But I could see how it could be convincing to others.

I have all the respect in the world for everyone in the military and have had many in my family serve in the military. But everyone in the service right now is there completely and 100% by choice. They have chosen their destiny, even the ones who chose the military over prison. I’m just old enough to remember but how quickly we forget the absolute carnage of the Vietnam War and the draft that no fortunate son had ever had to serve. The worst days in Afghanistan and Iraq don’t even remotely come close to the horrors of a good day in the Vietnam war. A draft would not end this war but it would sure remind people real quickly that we are in 2 very deadly conflicts with not much end in sight.

Jul. 16 2009 12:52 PM
kevin from Chelsea

Hey, Congress alotted the lions share of the education money into the armed forces how else can a less affluent american get at it?

Jul. 16 2009 12:38 PM
hjs from 11211

good thing they didn't have those commercials, targeted at parents whose kids want to join the military but the parents won't let them, back then. have u seen them? what do u think of them?

Jul. 16 2009 12:12 PM
hjs from 11211

it never was. look at how bush and cheney got out of serving during war time. and then look at how they refused to care for ill soldiers when they were in office.

Jul. 16 2009 12:02 PM
JP from Garden State from NJ

I’m sorry but this is a load for crap that the army only prays on poor urban kids. In 1986 I was old enough to join the military and still in a mostly white high school in a suburban town. The economy was bad but we had no wars. I was continuously harassed in school and continuously sent mail to join the military. They offered everything under the sun from large sign up bonuses all the way up to free college. They almost got me. But ironically it was my dad who was a Navy man the talked me out of it.

Jul. 16 2009 11:59 AM
Bo from Brooklyn - Prospect Heights


Jul. 16 2009 11:58 AM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

This is the legacy of eliminating the draft and a volunteer military. The defense of our country should be a burden shared by people from all walks of life and all economic strata.

Jul. 16 2009 11:57 AM
Andrew B. from New York City

I was in Army ROTC - I did not notice any disproportionate Black presence.

Do you have any official Army figures to back up this claim of disproportionate Black presence?

Jul. 16 2009 11:56 AM
Che F. from Soho


I am a middle class college education African American male in his mid-twenties. I have often considered enlisting; beyond financial incentives but for character benefits and the chance to give back to my country. However, my parents/family simply hate the idea of me enlisting specifically for racial reasons.

Their racial perspectives of the military in comparison to my social class and status are far different than mine.

just a comment.

Jul. 16 2009 11:55 AM
Bo from Brooklyn - Prospect Heights


Please differentiate between the racial desegregation of the armed forces and the sexuality and gender segregation that is still in force.

Jul. 16 2009 11:50 AM
hjs from 11211

so this is america: we won't funds schools so poor urban and RURAL boys (mostly) go to the military for 'opportunities,' oh by the way if u get sick your back on your own.
cannon fodder for rich boy playing toy soldiers, we are.

Jul. 16 2009 11:10 AM
Darius from Prospect Heights

While I know that not everyone goes into the military for economic reasons it still upsetting that war recruiting can really be "successful" when people are left with so few options. It's the backdoor draft for people of color, where our communities are seeing more than triple the national unemployment figures. This is really preying on the poor.

Jul. 16 2009 10:36 AM
Gabrielle from brooklyn

army recruits train in the park in Williamsburg Brooklyn. I rarely see any white kids in the crowd.

There is also an automotive high school across the street and one day I saw a recruiter (dressed in full uniform)following a black student down the street asking if he understood what the army could do for him. he was obviously uncomfortable. the uniform automatically puts the person wearing it in a position of authority and power and these kids do not have an adult around to help them navigate the situation. i found the situation disturbing. it was overtly predatory and i was deeply offended on behalf of the kid and his absent parents.

Jul. 16 2009 06:50 AM

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