In high schools across the United States, army recruiters come and talk to students to persuade them on signing up, or to at least consider joining the army. The recruiters tell students that joining the army can help develop new job skills which will later help after leaving the force or how joining the army can help pay college tuition. Recruiters tend to tell high school students all the benefits about joining the army, but what the students do not know is that they do not have a promise that they will come back home or that they will not develop any physical or mental disabilities; if students were to look at the media they would be better informed in the effects of soldiers during and after war.
Army campaigns tend to promise college tuition, affordable housing, job skills and many other things, but the media shows that most veterans experience homelessness, mental and physical disabilities, and some can not get a job.
The media’s portrayal of soldiers accurately expresses the difficulties soldiers have to deal with when returning from war. Troops are leaving the military with permanent injuries, injuries that stop veterans from maintaining a job. Veterans who come home with permanent injuries have to rely on the government to survive, and the government is not making it any easier on veterans. The Department of Veterans Affairs issued unnecessary medical reexaminations on veterans to allow them to continue receiving benefits, and although the reexaminations were a waste of money the overall benefits for veterans did not change (Davidson).
Veterans should not have to jump through hoops just to receive the benefits they are qualified for under law.
The reexaminations were just another problem added on to the list of difficulties disabled veterans already have to deal with. The media accurately displays the way soldiers suffers not only physically, but also mentally after returning from the battlefield. During wartime many soldiers go through traumatic events that later lead to problems, and the media often shows what they go through and advertises how to help our soldiers. In the short story The Prisoners, it tells about the horrible things a young soldier had to go through at a war camp, if a person were to experience what the character dealt with, whomever would return with some kind of trauma (Travers). A nationwide media outlet, CNN, provided an article which found that, “
A disproportionate number have come back with mental health challenges like anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, research shows. The number of suicides for veterans of these wars has reached a record (Christensen).” Becoming informed with how to help soldiers is now easier due to the amount of articles media outlets have provided online. Nationwide media sources provide information to the public on the amount of soldiers that suffer even after war; this way people become better informed on how to help soldiers with mental illnesses by the amount of easily accessible media sources. Not only are veterans suffering in the inside, some veterans still have difficulty finding a home when returning from battlefields.
Homeless veterans are a significant problem in the United States, and media outlets accurately portray information on how cities are helping with this problem. Media outlets often express concern towards homeless veterans and what cities are sheltering veterans. In Jacksonville, Florida, a non-profit local organization is planning on building small homes that will shelter once-homeless veterans (Clark). This organization will build possibly twenty or more homes in their neighborhood. Any media source, nationwide or local, helps to contribute information on which organizations are helping veterans. In Los Angeles, a vast majority of homeless people are veterans and the city is helping with providing a shelter towards veterans (VHA Office of Mental Health).
Homeless people are often seen in street corners or under bridges, often some hold signs saying they are veterans just to receive extra change from people; media outlets are informing society in ways they can help veterans who are not sheltered by providing information on how to help. Some soldiers do not have a home to come to when returning from war. Steve Estrine, a behavioral expert, wrote in his book, Service Delivery for Vulnerable Populations: New Directions in Behavioral Health, “A number of studies have indicated that the risk factors for homelessness are the same among veteran and non [-] veteran populations: poverty, housing instability, joblessness or underemployment, substance abuse, mental illness, and medical problems (Estrine).”
The media is a big contributor on informing society about how soldiers are being treated in their own country. The media encourage the public to protect and provide for veterans. Media outlets further motivate the public to have a tête-à-tête with veterans. Veterans are suffering physically and mentally, and some still do not have a safe place to go to at night, and the media is representing all of this and providing information on how to help. Our veterans fought to defend our rights, now as a society, it is up to us to provide a safe home for the people that protected our home. Media sources, local or nationwide, accurately depict the way soldiers are being treated when returning home from war.