A welcome but unnecessary defense of West Point.

Why I love America, Reason #4654908:

In Defense of West Point: A Cadet Responds to Thomas Ricks

My fellow cadets at West Point, in moments of overwhelming stress and cynicism, often compare our “rockbound highland home” to prison. Like inmates, cadets are regularly deprived of a wide range of social freedoms that “normal college students” would see as constitutional rights—we are told when, what, and where to sleep, eat, and wear. Our campus is secured on all perimeters by gates and security guards and entry into and out of West Point is tightly regulated. Most of the time, West Point feels more like the Panopticon than it does Harvard Yard. Thomas E. Ricks of the Washington Post voiced the sentiments of many of my classmates (myself included) during periods of utter exhaustion and pessimism when he declared this weekend that “we should get rid of West Point.”

So why do my classmates and I still stand proudly in the Long Gray Line? Because we think it’s worth it.

…it produces military personnel who can clearly, effectively, and courteously rebut an ‘argument’ that was (to paraphrase a colleague) extended more for notoriety’s sake than out of any real conviction. The last is probably the most important point, really: Rick’s condescending, parochial dismissal of a military tradition stretching back more than two hundred years is everything that we’ve come to expect from CNAS-style liberals. Particularly one who has graduated from Yale, a school that bans ROTC.

Personally, I’m growing tired of having to take seriously the narrow-mindedness of the Political Class.

Moe Lane

PS: Why I love America, Reason #4654909:
Check out the author blurb from TNL.

Tianyi Xin is a cadet at West Point where she double majors in International Relations and Law. She will graduate in May 2011.

Think about how that’d look to the average citizen of the United States of April 22, 1809. Or April 22, 1909. Or even April 22, 1959. Then laugh at the people who tell you how awful we are.

Crossposted to Moe Lane.