Are military parades un-American? | The Tylt
President Trump wanted a military parade down Pennsylvania Avenue for his inauguration, and his administration is reportedly planning a "massive" military parade in Washington D.C. for July 4, 2018. Many are uncomfortable with the idea: military parades are often associated with dictators, not democracies, and spending millions on a parade seems wasteful. But others argue we should celebrate American military might by putting it on display. What do you think? 🎖️
Are military parades un-American?
Alex Kingsbury says military parades are for authoritarians, and as such, we should absolutely have one in Trump's America.
If President Trump gets his way, a grand military parade will tromp down Pennsylvania Avenue on the Fourth of July. Tanks. Bombers. Rocket launchers.
Maybe such a display is exactly what Americans need — just not for the reasons Trump imagines. American should take a look — a close look — at what they’ve bought.
But then again, Roosevelt, Eisenhower, and Kennedy all had large and modern military contingents in their inauguration day parades. Tyler Rogoway points out that America has historically defended its values through military might, and the men and women who make up our Armed Forces are the best our nation has to offer.
"...the simple truth is that weaponry, warfare, and those who were willing to fight for the freedom were the things that made the dream of America a reality. With that in mind, celebrating that legacy directly by displaying the weapons and warriors American has today may seem like a logical and exciting idea for some."
“Being a great president has to do with a lot of things, but one of them is being a great cheerleader for the country,” Trump said in a January interview with The Washington Post. “And we’re going to show the people as we build up our military, we’re going to display our military.”
“That military may come marching down Pennsylvania Avenue. That military may be flying over New York City and Washington, D.C., for parades. I mean, we’re going to be showing our military."
Trump wants 4th of July military parade down Pennsylvania Avenue as show of military strength.— David Jolly (@DavidJollyFL) September 18, 2017
Why not celebrate the men and women of our military?
Lou Dobbs is totally down.
The idea is hardly a new one.
Kennedy had military parades.— Clyde Parker (@ColJSMosby) September 18, 2017
Others find the idea abhorrent.
Opponents say military parades are for dictators and authoritarian regimes. Why would we imitate the habits of Hitler, Stalin, the Soviet Union and modern-day North Korea?
Others say a military parade is a stupid waste of money. Let's use those funds for our veterans, not a meaningless display of weaponry.
Fun fact: according to presidential historian Michael Beschloss, big displays of military might were seen as a sign of weakness because they mimicked the Soviet Union. Critics say it could actually undermine the perception of American strength. It's like an American president sporting a military uniform, Gaddafi-style—it could cause more ridicule than respect.
The United States has, over the past few decades, eschewed grandiose military displays at home...because the US military doesn’t need to remind anyone how professional and lethal it is. Everyone knows.
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