#1028: How do I talk about my military service in leftist spaces?

Captain Awkward

Dear Captain Awkward,

When I was seventeen, in order to escape an emotionally and physically abusive mother, I joined the Air Force. However, about six months into a four year contract, I realized that my priorities (and my politics) had shifted, and that I could no longer justify to myself being in the military as a positive or moral choice. Unfortunately, short of getting pregnant or deliberately getting in trouble (neither of which I wanted to do), I had no way of getting out early.

Now, I’ve made it. I’m less than a month away from separating, and I’ve made plans to attend college and study biology. When I’m a civilian again, the people and organizations that I most want to interact with politically are very left-leaning, often with an emphasis on criticizing the military industrial complex. In a situation like that, I don’t know how to bring up the…

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