The Bigger Picture of Military Budget Cuts

Since I am a military spouse, all I’ve been hearing about lately is Panetta recommending troop pay cut right before leaving office as Defense Secretary. When I first heard this, I immediately started fuming. What in the world is he thinking?! Isn’t he supposed to be fighting for our military and their families?!

He recommended that troops salaries be limited to  a 1% increase starting in 2014. Sure he was just talking about pay increases, but those pay increases are essential for military families that struggle to pay the bills as it is.

A service member will receive BAH, BAS, “free” healthcare, along with whatever else that service member qualifies for. These “perks” are about to be taken away. If my husband were on active duty orders at the moment, that would mean over $1,000 pay cut. Could your family afford a thousand dollar pay cut?

Most military families live off post which means they don’t live in “free” government housing on post. Renters know how much BAH is, and do you think they put their rent price within BAH means? No way! A lot of renters will charge double BAH which means families are struggling even more. And let’s not forget all of the military families on government assistance because they can’t feed their family. Our military should be the last ones on government assistance.

But, but, but…K, the military budget needs to be cut.

OK-OK. Yes, the military budget needs to be cut, but there are plenty of ridiculous things in the budget that shouldn’t even be there. Don’t start with our troops pay!

Suicide and divorce rates are at an all time high, and financial stress will just make matter worse.

Think about this for a moment. My husband can’t get into any schools because of budget cuts. If our soldiers can’t get the proper training they need, what will happen? There will be thousands of under-trained soldiers which will mean thousands of lives will be lost.

The fact is we are still at war.

Have you heard about the military drawbacks? Thousands of soldiers are basically being laid-off. Stop calling it a drawback and just call it like it is: lay-offs. This means thousands of soldiers are losing all of their benefits and basic pay. Thousands will be out of a job.

Will this help our economy? Not a chance.

Along with the military lay-offs, small businesses around military installations will be losing a tremendous amount of business.

The fact is we are still at war.

There are deployments everyday. There are thousands of troops in harms way. Military budget cuts will affect force readiness.

Our military fights every day for us. Now, it’s our turn to fight for them! Don’t turn your back on military families when we need your voice the most. Your voice can help save lives. Your voice can help save marriages. Your voice matters.

I strongly encourage you to call, email, or write a letter to your Congressmen. Your voice will make a difference.

What do you think of the military budget cuts? Do you think the pay of service members should be affected?