I think that Bootcamp can change people quite a bit. I think a lot of the fools that go in for a supposedly easy ride, might not be so foolish when they come out the otherside.
I truely believe that the armed forces is a calling or vocation, and that it is the highest outside of the church due to the fact that its a prime location for self sarcifice whilst saving others, heralded as the greatest love a mortal can show.
I dont use the term "hero" for anyone really. Whether they were idiots or not, if they got killed by a IED then they still died for their country didnt they? They might be druggies, but they still died for your freedoms didnt they? The thought of anyone dying for me is absolutely horrific for me to comprehend to be blunt.
I choose as a civilian to give all who end up in the military, who pass the selection process, who survive bootcamp, and who come back from active deployment dead or alive, or simply live out their careers in bases back home or on foreign soil as being worthy of the upmost respect. I choose to give them the benefit of the doubt....and I worry for them settling back into the civilian population after they have been discharged in some way (its not til then that the evils of some of the methods of bootcamp are revealed)
I make a few exceptions. Those Soldiers who are involved with the poor treatment of prisoners, outside of interrogation (something I am not against although a large proportion of the population is) and those who are involved in the killings of other soldiers either during bootcamp (happened several times last summer in England) or those who are responsible for the seeming "suicides" on home soil (which are nothing but murder by other soldiers set up to look like suicides (again a spate in the English forces last summer)
I also extend these warm regards and exceptions to any country who is allied to my own.
I have issues with those in hig seniority in the Ministry of Defence though...but they I wouldnt class as really being Military...they are more like a political spin campaign