Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

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LOVEOFCOUNTRY
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Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by LOVEOFCOUNTRY »

Greetings Rangers,

I currently have 6 months left, on my initial contract in the army before I have to get out. I am at a cross road so to speak. Originally I was planning on getting out of the Army, and finishing up, the year of schooling that I have left, to complete my Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice. While I am finishing up my schooling, I plan on applying to several law enforcement agencies, in hope of getting picked up. With the economy being the way that it is, and law enforcement agencies on a hiring freeze, I must confess that I am a little nervous about getting out of the army. I have been in the Army long enough to understand how the army works, and I have accomplished everything that I have ever wanted to accomplish in the army (i.e Ranger Bat, Ranger School, CIB). I have enjoyed my time in the army, yet I never planned on making this a Career. Recently a guy who I served with went to SFAS, and was selected. I have always been interested in going SF, but I chose to go Ranger instead. I have never regretted my decision to go Ranger, but I have recently gotten the SF bug. Therefore Rangers, my question is this:

If you had to do it again, would you do it the same way that you did? Would you get out and join the civilian world or would you try out for SFAS (for those who have, or ever wanted to)?

I am just looking for other opinions on this matter, being that this is a big decision. I still need to do my homework and talk to the SF recruiter first, before I even consider the SF option. One option that I am considering, is the National Guard route. One question that I plan on asking the SF recruiter is -If I go to SFAS, and get selected while being on active duty, can I go to the Q-course while serving in a NG unit. California (my home) has a NG SF unit there, and that might be the “best of both worlds” so to speak, but then again I know myself, and if I were to do the SF route, I would want to do it all the way (active duty).

This is the first time that I have openly expressed any interest in going SF and am just curious of what you guys have to say. Thank you for any input that you might have. - RLTW
"God is not on the side of the big battalions but of those who shoot the best" - Voltery
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RMP-RLTW
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Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by RMP-RLTW »

I would never say that I regret my decision to get out because of my wife and two amazing sons. (big fucking) HOWEVER, I got out and hate just about everyone. I remember thinking there was so much money to be made once I got out. It's there, and I eventually found it but took a lot of years. No body gave a shit about my service or deployment. The biggest problem was the people, it has been almost 10 years and I still have a very difficult time dealing with the morons on the outside.

You will never find friendships/relationships like you have at Bat. It may not seem like too big of a deal now but I promise when they are gone, it will! If you do get out I am sure you will find yourself visiting this forum much more frequently!

Best of luck brother!
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by Lunch »

I would x2 much of RMP-RLTW just said. People have been interested in hearing about my deployments or service, but pretty much only from a curiousity perspective...it doesn't really mean anything to them other than the "cool story" value. Few understand how the training, experience, and skills translate into being a fantastic asset outside of the military; and for some Fed jobs, I've also found being a veteran is sometimes a looked at negatively by hiring officials because that means they have to look at you and not Billy-bob who lives next door. I suppose it depends a lot on what type of post-military career you'd want to pursue, and with whom you'd want to pursue it with.

On the flip side, imagine if you extended or re-enlisted to go SF and you biffed the Q-course for whatever reason?? Then what? What is the point of getting out if you know you'll be going to a Guard unit who is going to be deployed just as often, if not more often, that being on active duty? The Brothership you share in an SF team is deep, but far different IMO than in Batt. I do not know, however, if the same could be said about a non-active duty SF unit. I was not impressed with the Guard or Reserve SF or whatever they were I worked with in the mid-90's, but that was then.

For me, my strategy when I got out was that I was going to committ 100% to my plan and vision so I didn't waiver back and forth or wonder all the what-if's. There were certainly times when I was struggling in college when going back into the Army seemed very, very enticing; and my run-ins with people like my retired Lt Col cousin and retired CSM Rambo telling me what an idot I was for not staying in the Guard or Reserves didn't help. But that wasn't my plan, and ultimately I'm glad I stuck to it.

My $.02
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by goon175 »

I think getting out when you still have that huge "what if" haning over your head is the wrong answer. And I can also tell you, that if you get out right now, your not getting back in on the active side. Not with the RIF about to happen. Do another enlistment, whats it gonna hurt? The economy may settle down a bit over that time, you can finish your degree, and take some more time to figure out what you want out of life. Also, there are ALOT of different things to do in the Army that many batt. guys don't look at. I think most guys look at SF as the only job they can do to get away from batt. but not go to the big army. I think unless you actually want to DO the UW/FID job, than you don't belong in SF. Otherwise your just gonna show up and not understand why you can't throw a flex linear on every door you come across haha. Overall, my opinion is that you don't sound like you are ready to get out, but want to find something to do outside of Batt. Look at everything out there, you might be suprised.
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by cams »

I only have a few yrs of service to speak of, and my mindset was that of yours now as far as get out/stay in. I'm assuming you have at least several yrs in already, and therefore are that much closer to a retirement check, and still being young enough to start another careeer when you retire, with that many more contacts to help out with.

I come from a family of cops, my father, my brother, three uncles and two cousins, and now myself, the youngest, so I kind of fell into it when I got out. If I had known then what I know now, I seriously don't think I'dve taken this job.

It has changed so drastically over the years, what with cellphone cameras recording your every move and posting it to youtube, the ROE that are placed upon us, liberalism especially, bullshit lawsuits and worrying about losing your home/your families home in a lawsuit, just for doing your job because some shitdick with connections gets hurt because he wanted to fight instead of go quietly to jail. It's just not worth it.

I'm here, after 16, going on 17 yrs now, chomping at the bit to get to retirement so I can get the fuck out of here, and that saddens me, even my uncles and my father (RIP), kept telling me not get into it (they all started in the 50's and 60's) it's changing too fast for the worst, but I didn't listen and wanted to carry on what they did.

I'm not sure how much you know about law enforcement jobs, or if it's just an idea for a steady career, some guys here love it, maybe depends on where you work. I myself, as I just told young Ford, am so disgusted, even with other cops, so many crooked cops out here, thieves, pimps, dealers (yes cops) they are really scraping the bottom of the barrel to fulfill Affirmative Action slots and then you got the big fat fucks, the lesbians, the pole-smokers now, coming in with rainbow fucking flags on their cruisers in the gay pride parade, it's just fucking crazy Brother. Nothing makes sense out here anymore.

In short, being a cop is working everyday in hardcore fucking legland for another 25 or so years until you can retire? Fuck that. Stay in young Ranger, people out here suck, I mean they really suck, they suck donkey balls so bad you'll want to fucking kill them, they don't give a flying fuck about anything or anybody but themselves.

Same thing we told young Ford, STAY THE FUCK IN, it sucks out here.
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LOVEOFCOUNTRY
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by LOVEOFCOUNTRY »

Rangers,
I greatly appreciate all of your posts. Each of you have offered a different insight, that I will heavily consider, over the next few weeks. I can not tell you how much it truly means to get your opinions on this matter. I think this is why I enjoy this site so much...It is because we all are cut from a similar cloth, and no one else will ever understand or appreciate this decision unless they have been there, or lived the life that we have. Many thanks brothers. -RLTW
"God is not on the side of the big battalions but of those who shoot the best" - Voltery
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by dbmtrman »

I went through the same thing 25 years ago. I ETS'ed from 1st Batt in Dec 86. I visited an inservice recruiter and joined the Army Reserve and was assigned to the 12th SFG in Miami. I was moving to S. FL and would be an hour or so from the reserver center. My plan was to ETS in Dec, get married in Jan, and go through the Q Course Medic route. I was then planning on going back active duty after finishing the Q Course. I was told that within 60 days of signing into the reserve unit I would have my Q course orders. When I got there, things were much different then I had planned, and was pretty dissapointed with my SF reserve experience. After Batt, the reserve training was a major let down. I also found others in the unit that were told the same thing, but were waiting 2 years and more to get the Q course orders. I signed out and went inactive reserve after 8 months.

A couple years later I got into law enforcement and have been a cop for over 21 years. The last 18 years as a SWAT team leader and also spent nearly 18 years on Motors. I have gotten to do alot of things in law enforcement and enjoyed almost every day of it. However, it still doesn't compare with what I did in Battalion, and I do regret getting out, nearly every day. Mostly because of the friends. You will not find the friendship or comaradarie in anything else you do. Like the others have said, you can tell others what you did, but they don't truly understand, what you did or what you are talking about. Your fellow Rangers do. That's why I seldom tell people about what I did back in the day, cause they wouldn't understand anyways.
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by Lunch »

Another thought to consider, mainly in response to Cam's experiences and observations:

Another alternative, although not necessarily better, career option in law enforcement would be with a federal agency such the National Park Service, Park Police, Forest Service, BLM, etc. Much different working environment; but at the same time, a different collection of problems or issues. Don't do it myself, so I won't say much about it, but I gotta believe that IF I wanted a career in law enforcement, I'd much rather deal with mutants doing stupid shit in the forest than entire inner-city hordes.
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by snafu »

goon175 wrote:I I think unless you actually want to DO the UW/FID job, than you don't belong in SF. Otherwise your just gonna show up and not understand why you can't throw a flex linear on every door you come across haha.
This is the most accurate statement when it comes to Rangers going SF. I've ran into a few former Batt boys in Group. Some like it, some don't and drop a Delta packet ASAP. Just depends on personality and the above sentence.
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by mortar_guy78 »

Ultimately the decision is up to you. Like goon said, if you are looking to stay away from big army, there are other options than SF. Look into PsyOP, Civil Affairs, Counterintelligence (I'm in CI school right now and it's pretty sweet, PM me if you have any questions) and so on. These are the little sought after jobs (at least by grunts like us) which offer ridiculous amounts of job skills when you ETS or retire and actually let you do something interesting, IMHO. PsyOP and CA are both SOF, so you can keep away from big army bullshit. CI has a lot of SOF support slots, both with the Groups and Regiment, as well as Strategic Assignments where you wear civilian clothes and conduct investigations.

There's a lot of stuff out there. If you really want to get out, more power to ya, but explore all of your options and above all have a PLAN.
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by Jim »

Well, I started as an enlistee, rapidly earned Staff Sergeant. Saw that Viet-Nam was winding down. Went to OCS, and became an Infantry officer. Lots of opportunities. Led a rifle, Anti-Tank, and Support Platoons; commanded a CSC in a mech battalion and a HQ Company; commanded a battalion. Was absolutly amazed that I was so successful. Since then I've worked as a defence contractor. One thing I've learned that there are lots of options available. It is up to you to consider everything and then select the course of action that meets your requirements.

The real answer is that we all have a bunch of choices as we go through life. I only know what worked for me.
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Re: Get out of the Army, or go SF ???

Post by sinjefe »

Don't post much, but thought I would comment on this. I did my first few years in 1/75, a few years in the regular army and my last 20 in SF. As lunch said, Batt and SF are totally different worlds. Both good, but radically different missions and dynamics. That said, I retired and took a job with DOD (Army organization). The civilian world sucks. You get so used to dealing with squared away people in both Batt and SF, that I forgot what the Regular Army was like. Top that off with having civilians who have never been in around you and you have, like Cams said, hardcore fucking legland. I'll go a step further and say hardcore fucking legland, slug ass, back-stabbing, turds in human suits for the most part. You just don't realize how squared away the SOF world is in comparison.
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