All Drama or Freckles have to do is flick Monster on the arm for him to come running upstairs, complete waterworks, screaming about how he was brutally punched.
This worked maybe once or twice. But after some time with the constant hysterics and exaggerations, I stopped listening.
The truth is, his siblings should be spoken to in some way for constantly annoying him. But the fact that the truth of HOW they are annoying him have been so greatly exaggerated means that I now do nothing. Sometimes, I need to discipline Monster for lying. Rarely, though, do I remember after all the truth comes out to reprimand his siblings for the infraction they are guilty of.
Monster doesn't understand it, but his over the top screaming and exaggeration have made me tune out, which isn't helping his cause one bit.
Lately, this graphic is circulating the web
And it bugs me.
It's only the latest one in a string of 'Support or Troops' propaganda that is misleading or false.
I'm not going to speak on any of the other 'facts' listed on it. I don't know for sure how much the PMO makes on retirement, but all my research up to now puts it at much less than what this says.
But that's not my point.
My point is that the 'average' Canadian soldier (or military member, since there are sailors and airmen as well), does not make $40 000.
In fact, on enlisting, a Private makes about $33 000. By his or her 2nd year, they make $41 000. By 4 years - over $55 000.
So I'm not sure what 'average' is since I'm unsure how many members of what ranks exist, but I have to say that this leads me to believe the 'average' soldier makes quite a bit more than $40 000.
As military members, your income is inside a fishbowl. The interweb lists the pay scale for every rank up to general. If you know a members rank, you know their base salary. You can add on that if they receive Land Duty Allowance, Personal Living Differential, Sea-Pay, Air-Pay, or any other allowance.
When serving on deployment, the member also receives extra pay based on level of danger and how many times he or she has been sent on deployment previously. As well, on many (though not all) military deployments out of country, the military member's salary becomes tax free for the duration of the deployment.
SO let me make clear, friends.
DH has spent 14 years in the military. When he joined, the pay for a Private at 1 year was less that $21 000. There was no tax free status for deployments. It was..... not fun. We made due with a VISA and a PMQ with rent that at the time was based on income, little to no disposable cash, waiting to payday to buy milk and my constant string of jobs where I could find them. Just like everyone managed before me. That doesn't make it right, it's just the way it was.
Now, that same private makes $41000. There has been inflation, too, but still, this has been a HUGE jump.
No one is getting rich off a military career. Certainly not anyone supporting a family of 5. Some might make more money in civilian careers. But not all (if I had a dollar for every soldier I have seen quit for more money and re-enlist 3-5 years later....). There are sacrifices, bills are tight, sometimes it seems unfair. Many times it seems unfair. Usually those times when my friends go on vacation.
Especially when extras in moving cost money and you get an allowance for housing costs in one place but not the other even though your mortgage is the same and there's no huge salary at the end of the tunnel to hold out for like other careers can hope for.
But you can pay bills and survive off these salaries. You can. We have. It's not glamorous or lavish, but it can be done if you don't try to live like you are richer than you think.
So that brings us to the point of this graphic.
The TRUE salaries would have been enough.
Maybe whoever made it was worried people wouldn't listen unless the gap was greater.
Maybe they just guessed at everything and can't work google.
I don't know.
But the sentiment is good.
There is a HUGE gap and depending on your leanings, it might look really, really unfair.
But let's use the facts to communicate that gap, not exaggerated information.
We've all also seen the graphic or poem or status saying that men in helmets fighting for freedom should be paid more than men in helmets fighting for a football?
Do we actually want the taxes involved with paying soldiers salaries that are compatible with football players, or do we just like the sound byte?
I don't miss the point, at all, but it's not the Canadian Government's fault that we as a society value entertainment with our money and capitalism allows that to turn some professions into millionaires while other's will never see that kind of income.
That's just the way of the world as our society has created it. We pay to watch athletes and actors. We don't pay to watch soldiers. If you want to change this, stop watching movies and sports and contributing to their salaries.
And saddest of all, the ones doing what could arguably be
called the most damage to the reputation of soldiers are those within
their own ranks and families who are manipulating and abusing the system.
mental health and physical injury claims. Exaggerating
symptoms to get payouts. Complaining and running to the media each and
every single time the Canadian Forces doesn't give them their way, even
those times when they were more than within their rights to do so.
Championing for better pay while purposely manipulating the facts to make it look worse than it is.
There are SO FEW of those people, and yet they are SO LOUD and they are RUINING IT FOR EVERYONE.
The TRUTH, friends, is that Forces Families need support.
The TRUTH is there is much room for improvement.
Many are having to fight and often losing their battle to receiving adequate care, respect and retraining after suffering an injury.
More and more budget cuts are affecting services to those that need it most.
Even more cuts are making service member's jobs harder and harder with old equipment and little funding.
Every day more soldier's (and their families) are suffering from mental health issues and information and resources for them is not being communicated, meaning many that are hurting are slipping through the cracks.
Take a look at the salary chart. (It's linked below in case you want me to work google for you).
I'm not going to complain about hubby's salary, but it's certainly nothing special. I know many families who are struggling because moving makes it hard for the spouse to keep a good job, because jobs are limited when you can't work shift work to accomodate your spouse's operational tempo, because costs of living are greater in some areas and without family support many are paying more for childcare than others. Because moving around makes it difficult to find community, hand me downs, babysitter co-ops, etc. Because the living allowences based on location can seem arbitrary and sometimes a move can been a loss of $12 000 or more a year in income.
And most soldiers (because, like any job, there are some that just aren't) work really, really hard. On call. Long hours. They will, if asked, put their life on the line. Their families will move. They will answer phones in the night and they will sandbag floods and fight forest fires and police the Olympics and defend Afghan villages.
I'm the last person to argue against them deserving the best.
But let's be realistic.
Let's make our battles count.
There are things that need to be shared, championed and fought.
There's a dialogue that should be opened and discussions that should be had.
But it is a disservice to those needs when we reproduce and share 'propoganda' that exaggerates the need.
The facts speak loud enough on their own, friends.
Let's stick to them.
Mental Health System
What do you think when you see misleading or false social media propaganda? Does it bug you or could you care less?