No one really cares about the Army-Navy football game

I pray to several gods that December 11 will mark the very last Army-Navy football game, because for the vast majority of the military, it is a non-event.

No doubt many of you will find these comments mean, ignorant, and downright anti-American. But listen carefully: in my 16 years in the military, I have yet to hear any enlisted serviceman express the slightest enthusiasm at the prospect of seeing future sub-lieutenants and ensigns compete against each other. on the grill.

It sometimes seems that officers and servicemen live in separate universes, as evidenced by a Navy lieutenant objecting to having to live with enlisted sailors, whom he described as ‘perverts’ and ‘perverts’. deviants, ”who frequently scold with axes and axes.

The chasm separating the two worlds widens further as the Army-Navy football match approaches. While both services publish dueling spirit videos featuring general and general officers to heighten the anticipation of the epic clash, most enlisted servicemen don’t care who wins as they are too busy prepping their axes for the next gang war between perverts and villains. deviant.

“There isn’t a single active-duty enlisted Marine who cares about Army / Navy football games,” tweeted a Marine Corps veteran and “Terminal lance” creator Maximilian Uriarte.

In this undated photo released by the US Naval Academy, Navy football mascot Bill 36 looks into a camera in Annapolis, Md. Navy game in Philadelphia. Bill 36 began Naval Academy mascot training this season. (Jennifer M. Erickson / United States Naval Academy via AP)

We’ve got heaps and heaps of measurements that show that the only Army and Navy stories anyone seems interested in reading are those that highlight embarrassing cadet escapes, like how West Pointers recently kidnapped. the bad goat in a failed attempt to steal the Navy team mascot.

The New York Times wrote a follow-up article on how the West Point Cadets were then launched a successful operation to kidnap two goats that actually serve as mascots for the Naval Academy. Kudos to West Point, but unless these two goats are secretly part of the People’s Liberation Army, your ability to lure helpless animals into the back of a van won’t help you when war with China. will burst.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the Army-Navy football game offers young people the opportunity to almost derail their military careers before they even start doing something stupid in front of the national media. Two years ago, West Point and the Naval Academy investigated whether the cadets and midshipmen made a hand gesture used by white supremacists during the game.

No one really cares about the Army-Navy football game
FILE – Army cadets march onto the field before an NCAA college football game against Navy in West Point, NY, Saturday, December 12, 2020, file photo. (AP Photo / Adam Hunger, file)

This is from an actual report in December 2019: “The investigation concluded that the cadets were playing the “circle game”, where the hand sign is made below someone’s waist and – if another person is looking at it – the person making the symbol hits the other person. “

So since most soldiers don’t care – enrolled personnel represent 82% – and the Army-Navy game seems to bring one scandal after another, why not just pull it out? Quite frankly, enlisted servicemen don’t care about their officers’ years of training at West Point or the Naval Academy. If you want to test this theory, watch a graduate talk about “the academy” to his platoon and you’ll see every E-5 and below’s eyes cover in seconds.

Rather than devoting so much time and energy to a highly symbolic showdown between their service academies, the Army and Navy should each be doing something meaningful instead. For example, army could figure out how email works and the Navy could remove the “petroleum product” from the drinking water at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii.

To all the cadets and wannabes that I may have offended with this column, know that these are just ribs of good humor. It’s also a good introduction to what you can expect once you’ve joined your first unit and accidentally left your common access card or blanket unattended.

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