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Jan 29 2017
by Prashanth Rajesh

6 ROTC Cadets Share Their Opinion of the New Secretary of Defense

By Prashanth Rajesh - Jan 29 2017

ROTC Cadets across the nation will soon be commissioning and serving within the military. Newly inaugurated President, Donald Trump, selected retired General James “Mad Dog” Mattis to fill the cabinet seat of Secretary of Defense. These are six Cadets and their opinions on Mattis. (Note: in order to preserve anonymity, names have been removed.)

"I'm rather glad that a retired general may be in charge of our nation's defense. I truly hope, for the people and the best interest of this country, he is the best option we have for that position."
– Anonymous

Mattis' 44 years of experience in the United States Marine Corps is frequently cited as being an example of his ability to lead.

"He was literally almost unanimously voted for by Senate. Unlike in the case of Betsy DeVos, the Senate believes that Mattis is perfect for the job, and I completely agree."
– Anonymous

Mattis received very little opposition from the Senate after the Senate hearing.

"Whether or not you agree with what he’s said in the past, he handled himself better during the Senate’s confirmation hearings than anyone. He answered every question directly without breaking a sweat, even when he was hit with a barrage of back-to-back questions."
– Anonymous

During the Senate hearing, Arizona Senator John McCain asked GEN (R) Mattis many difficult questions, but Mattis was able to answer the questions clearly and elaborately. 

"I trust Mattis to lead our nation’s defense. It’s really nice to see someone with so much military experience, even though it’s a civilian position. His experience in the Marines is definitely something that’s helped gain the trust of a lot of us that are currently serving, or are about to serve." 
– Anonymous

Military members have been shown to be dissatisfied with politicians in the past, including former President Barack Obama.

"He knows his stuff and tries to know his soldiers. He lives by what he says, and that’s pretty admirable about a leader."
– Anonymous

Mattis received positive feedback from almost everyone whom he interacted with.

While most Cadets are supportive of Mattis’ selection as Secretary of Defense, some are also cautious:

"My main concern is that General Mattis will push for even more funding for the military. As a future soldier, more funding is always appreciated, but as a student and citizen, I’ve experienced that a lot of other things need funding, too, like our public education system." 
– Anonymous

In 2015, the US spent nearly 54% of its federal budget on the military, but less than seven percent on education.

Watch the Senate hearing for yourself and see who will be leading our nation’s defense.

Lead Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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Prashanth Rajesh - University of California, Los Angeles

Prashanth is a freshman studying Computer Science and Engineering at UCLA. He enjoys physically demanding activities such as running and dancing, but also loves mentally challenging activities such as discussing politics and playing chess.

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