Penn State riot ends aspiring Army officer's dream – Stripes – Independent U.S. military news from Iraq, Afghanistan and bases worldwide

Stints in jail. Hefty fines and restitution. Clouded futures. The consequences of their bad behavior have been steep for the Penn State students who took to the streets and rioted in the chaotic aftermath of Hall of Fame coach Joe Paterno’s firing last November.

Perhaps none have learned a harder lesson than Justin Strine, a young man from central Pennsylvania whose planned career as an Army officer is over before it began — the casualty of his own split-second decision to put his hands on a news van, and a judicial system that considered him as guilty as classmates who did far worse that dark night in State College.

As the fall semester gets under way Monday, Strine has returned to campus, along with 15 other students found to have taken part in a nationally televised riot that caused tens of thousands of dollars in damage and embarrassed Penn State.

As he resumes his studies, nothing’s the same for the 21-year-old from Hummelstown. He spent part of his summer in jail. Far worse: He’s been kicked out of ROTC, his dream of carrying on his family’s proud military tradition now out of reach.

“I’m losing everything I worked my entire life for,” Strine said.

via Penn State riot ends aspiring Army officer’s dream – Stripes – Independent U.S. military news from Iraq, Afghanistan and bases worldwide.

Actions have consequences. Poor moral aptitude. Poor decision making skills. There’s an excellent comment at Stripes that discusses why Strine should not be permitted to continue in ROTC:

The dream of military training from the Marine Corps at Parris Island to the Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs is to come up with a test that will evaluate how an individual responds when it is necessary to make a moral choice under stress.  This incident provided that scenario, and the outcome was clear.

The military is about the controlled application of violence to achieve national goals.

Oh, and before anyone suggests Mr. Strine can serve his country by enlisting… he can’t. Persons under civil restriction such as parole or probation are not eligible for enlistment.


10 thoughts on “Penn State riot ends aspiring Army officer's dream – Stripes – Independent U.S. military news from Iraq, Afghanistan and bases worldwide”

  1. much like the riots we suffered here in the uk last year, i have very little sympathy for anyone who later moans that taking part in such a thing has ‘ruined their lives’ … if you didn’t riot you wouldn’t be in this mess. simple! actions == consequence as you say. in the olden days, of course, the reading of the riot act could then unleash military force on said rioters. being a bit of a lefty (especially compared to you guys!) i’m generally against such things, but seeing homes and business up in flames, police hamstrung from political correctness and media interests so they cannot act, people dying … well, you wonder if taking the kid-gloves off might actually be better in the long run.

  2. Sad but that’s the way it goes. Sometimes there is no such thing as a do-over. It’s better we found out what he is made of before we put him in charge of a platoon of Soldiers.

  3. he should realize that for some people, their greatest contribution to society is to serve as a bad example…

    he has accomplished his purpose.


  4. Much of the coddling that has infested the educational system of late is the brainchild of the 60’sleft and 50’s (now discredited) child psychology. I had a professor who graded all of her papers with purple or green ink because red ink would “hurt student’s self image”.

    This rocket scientist needed a reality check. What was he rioting for? A coach fired over the child abuse scandal. *facepalm*
    The though of this man-child in charge of a 7-11 scares me.

  5. Part of “accepting responsibility for your actions” is not whining about the punishment you receive. Pretty much everything in this article is telling me he doesn’t really accept responsibility for what he did.

  6. Tough shit.

    If you do something THAT stupid I do not want you in my officer corps, period.

    You are not fit to accept the responsibility of leading Soldiers.

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