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VTguy

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About VTguy

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  1. I'll go out on a limb and say I'm probably the only forum member who has been both an active duty AF aircrew member and a full time street cop/detective. Its interesting to see professional aircrew members here citing anecdotes based on seconds-long video clips, with minimal context, in order to make generalized conclusions regarding policing in America. You guys are taxpaying Americans and entitled to make any judgements you want. But oblige me for a moment... I was involved in a Class A mishap during my active duty AF time. I don't remember anyone taking partial/preliminary information or hearsay from that incident to diagnose the entire AF flying community as a bunch of f***-ups. I've always appreciated the way the aviation industry generally reserves judgement until an objective investigation has been completed. That investigation takes into account every possible environmental factor, human factor, the aircrew's training and experience, the unit culture and adherence to standards, etc, etc. A lot of guys in this thread are posting anecdotal videos without the full context to supposedly prove a point. Anyone can use Google to find a few videos/anecdotes to fit their narrative in this debate. But the issues surrounding US policing today are so much more complex than that. Is policing in America broken? Yes, in my opinion. Is it because cops are systemically racist? No, in my opinion. I've read thread after thread on this site over the years...in which professional aircrew members warn of the cluster f*** that the AF flying community would become when all of the experience and talent decides to leave. Let's consider what the AF flying community would become if the starting pay was <$40K with shitty benefits, a few months of training before being put in harm's way, and a public perception that you were all a bunch of racist thugs.
  2. I did RJs from 2013-2017 at Offutt (non-EWO). Omaha was a surprisingly great town to live in. The winters were cold and its a long drive to get away. But otherwise the wife and I enjoyed it. Cost of living wasn't bad. Nice downtown scene. The area around base was decent compared to a lot of bases. I felt like there was a lot of politics in the Wing, with the "front end" and "back end" crew members being split into different units. The RJ has three officer AFSCs on its crew, and there were elements in each "tribe" jockeying for relevance. But that seemed to go away during deployments. I really enjoyed the mission. From the EWOs I worked with, the theme was that guys who preferred a stable family life went RJ. The single dudes who loved travel and per diem went CB and CS. The more high speed EWOs were always being groomed for WIC. But if I remember right, they also had opportunities to do JOCCP, which is a much more rare and interesting track IMO.
  3. As a prior 14N once upon a time, my instinctive response is point out the poster's final words and say "Lts are best seen and not heard". But I'd be lying if I didn't say that career field, like most others in the AF, has placed the rockstar holiday party or morale day coordinator well above the dude/dudette who can actually do their damned job. I know I'm preaching to the choir. But I'd wager that Lt has spent more time calculating when he/she will be due for PME, 0-4 board, etc. than he/she has spent in the 3-1 or on JWICS reading products that have to do with their current job.
  4. That's a fair point. I'd agree that multi-cam is a ridiculous look for cops and agents working a protest in Portland, Seattle or any other urban area. From my limited understanding, the guys we're seeing in the news are HSI SRT, USMS SOG and CBP BORTAC. These are dedicated tactical teams at the federal level and I'm guessing the multi-cam is simply what they have on hand. They aren't regular cops. They certainly wouldn't be my first choice for riot control duties. But their deployment is limited and anecdotal in the context of the greater debate about police militarization. They aren't representative of the 800k or so street cops around the US.
  5. Back when I was active duty I used to have a similar perspective about police being overly-militarized. But then I went to the Guard, became a cop/detective, and the perspective changed. Its easy to look at social media and think police are out of control. Sure, every department has one or two tackleberries who love gear and guns. But everything our patrol guys carry on their person or in their vehicles has a distinct purpose. Police tools and tactics are inherently reactive to trends in greater society and the criminal element. AR-15s and similar high powered, semi-auto rifles have become more commonplace in American homes. Naturally, they have become more prevalent in barricaded gunman incidents, domestic violence incidents, active shooters, etc. A 5.56 round will go through a patrol car and a soft kevlar vest like a knife through butter. Last year one of my buddies was shot and killed by an armed fugitive despite wearing a kevlar vest. Just a few weeks ago a rookie in my area was shot and killed through a door on a domestic violence incident. I'm sorry if people get butt hurt seeing us wearing plate carriers while we respond to armed subjects...but I'd rather not go to any more funerals. I think there is alot of room for police in the US to be reformed. There are some legitimately good ideas floating around out there. But they aren't getting real traction because of the hyperbole and political agendas that benefit from casting all cops as wannabe soldiers or racist thugs.
  6. The majority of people I commissioned with through ROTC had "fessed up" about experimenting with weed. The first key here is that it was experimentation and not habitual. The second key is that they were honest and up front about it. Another important point...make sure you are consistent in your answers to these questions. You will be doing security paperwork over and over again throughout your career, assuming you will hold a TS/SCI clearance. You will be asked the same questions over and over again for years. If you're asked the same question a few years from now right before you're due to commission, and the answer doesn't exactly match what you originally said in your ROTC application...you will probably have some problems.
  7. Agreed. I'm not a cyber or space guy. But its hard to take legitimate offensive/defensive warfighting cyber capabilities seriously when they're lumped in the same category as your local comm focal point that works 0900-1500 Monday-Thursday w/ Friday closed for training. That's just my limited perspective, though.
  8. I was at that CC call as well. I know some people thought the whole anonymous survey thing was more gimmick than anything else. But I actually liked it...especially the question about whether or not we have enough time in the work day to actually accomplish our daily workload. Hopefully the willingness to put that out there is an indication that the new boss "get's it". I guess we'll see.
  9. Granted I've only spent a minimal amount of time around the recently promoted O-7 in question, but I have a very hard time believing he would have demanded a comm dude come in on the weekend for that. My guess is that was the good work of middle management.
  10. Civilian clothes allowed. No disco belts required in the CC either. No open-toed shoes allowed in the DFAC though...they were authorized for a while, then banned not too long ago.
  11. I'm on my first deployment with the RJ (on the non-rated aircrew side). What I can tell from the guys in our front end squadrons (pilots, navs, ravens)...married folks seem to really like the RJ more than others. Deployments are relatively short and predictable. And Omaha is a great town for a family. Younger guys without families seem to prefer the other RC-135 variants. Less predictable, and you get to do some pretty fun TDYs.
  12. Touche. Just don't take it too seriosuly. Try to have fun and get to know the other dudes in your flight. You'll probably see some of them again at some point in your career. Keep it all in perspective. 10 years from now when you look back at your last 1-2 years of college, I guarantee you won't be saying "Wow I'm so f***ing glad I rocked FT". Just try to enjoy college while you still can. Good luck.
  13. Granted its been a few years since I graduated ROTC...but I wouldn't characterize my first 1-3 years as "fighting hard". Especially when compared to life on active duty. I agree with you, though, that if it takes someone 1-3 years to realize "its not for them"...then something is wrong. That's a lot of wasted time/effort/money on the AF's part.
  14. That's exactly what I needed to know. Thank you.
  15. I'm currently on active duty and started the process for my initial FC3 a couple months ago before PCSing to my new job (a non-rated flying position). Passed all the tests/labs/etc but it looks like I'll need a waiver for history of asthma. This isn't the first time the issue has come up. I dealt with it for my DODMERB like six years ago when I was starting ROTC. They initially DQ'd me for the same thing. So I did the methacholine test and gave them records of all prescriptions filled at my local pharmacy between ages 6-18. After that, they were satisfied that I have normal lung function and wasn't on asthma meds after age 12, so DODMERB overturned the DQ and said I was good to go. Now, years later, when flight med screened my old records they saw the original DODMERB paperwork where I disclosed a history of asthma. I'm hoping that I can just give the waiver authorities those same records/test results that convinced DODMERB I didn't have asthma after 12. Is that likely to satisfy the requirements for a waiver? Or are they not going to care what DODMERB said, and make me do everything from scratch and get records from my childhood doctors and a new methacholine test? I still have copies of all the stuff I gave to DODMERB, but I'm wondering if there's anything else I should start getting ahold of in order to help in the waiver process. I'd appreciate any advice. Thanks!
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