Subculture Proposal

To propose a subculture to study for class is perhaps one of the hardest things I have had to think about for a while. Subcultures are so broad and vast that I am having a hard time choosing one to fit into my schedule, so this is one of the many problems I may face. Most of my time is taken up by school, working, homework, and trying to see my boyfriend for at least five minutes out of the day. Another problem may be trying to find a meeting to go to for participation and gaining that permission.
I am considering interviewing Veterans. There are meetings every second Tuesday of the month at seven in the evening for chapter 357 at the Redding Veterans Memorial Hall. I will need to obtain permission to attend and have my interview questions ready. I would like to ask about some of the reasons for joining the service as well as maybe why they left (time served, discharged, personal reasons). I want to know how many years the average person has served. What was their favorite part as well as the worst part of their time served in the military? I am also open to hearing whatever they may want to share. I will observe their meeting habits and how the meeting is conducted.
I think Veterans are a great part of our history and while I do not want to join I would love to hear about the experiences that many of these people went through. There is no person who has served the same as anyone else so I would like to get as many people as I can together for interviewing. My aunt and uncle both served in the Army so they may be able to help me gain permission if needed. I would like to know what motivates these people so much. I would consider joining the service if I knew I could make it through without having a panic attack or my knees and back hurting. I am leery of joining partly due to my biases I will mention. My major is RN so I think it would be really wonderful if I could talk to someone who was either a nurse or doctor during their service. It would be helpful to me to know what they were up against opposed to what I believe I will be up against in the future.
I am aware that I have some biases and I would like to write them down so that I do not use them to structure my interviewing. I do believe that the military targets young people who especially but not always are middle class to poor. I also believe that they entice people with big bonuses and career goals that may never happen. I guess I am cautious of the whole process because of how I know some people have been treated. I do hope that people know what they are getting in to when joining the military. I will do my best to not influence other people’s answers when I interview them.
Despite what I feel about some things pertaining to the military I do think it is a good cause. Someone has to defend our country so that the rest of us can have our freedoms. I have family in the military and I do not discourage them from that. Each person is different and has a goal in mind. For some people defending our country and devoting their time to our government is what they live for, for others they feel like they have no choice. I would rather people be doing good in the service than living poorly and making bad decisions outside of it.

Interview Analysis
I have interviewed my uncle Arnie Zabinski so far for my project. I was not nervous about the interviewing because he is my uncle and I know him pretty well and am comfortable asking him questions. Arnie is in his sixties, he is a relaxed and funny person. I sent Arnie my questions over the internet in an email and asked him to answer them as soon as he was able to. He was eager to reply and share part of his life with me. Arnie responded within an hour which made writing the interview homework go a lot faster and smoothly.
I ignored the fact that I had to interview my uncle and asked him the same questions exactly how I will give them to my other interviewees. I made the questions as clear as possible so there would not be any confusion when he had to answer them. He responded fast and answered my questions as thoroughly as he was able to. I think emailing Arnie was a good choice because I don’t have any time to talk to him in person. He was able to give me answers that were thorough and very helpful by reading the questions to himself. Not all of my interviews will be done in the same manner because I would like to see people face-to-face and have interaction. Emailing was done out of necessity rather more than anything else.
I was extremely glad that I chose Arnie to be an interviewee. I learned a lot about the military and what the actual life of a soldier can be like. I learned more about my uncle and his military life than I had actually ever known before. The answers he gave me made me respect the people who join the military a little more. The military seems to be changing but the basics remain the same which makes the service work so well all together. I think it takes courage to be in the military no matter what your job ends up being. Overall I think this was a good interview and I look forward to doing more for my project.

Military Glossary

Shift Work- (Also called a nine and three shift) Working three days on one shift, then you get a twenty-four hour break. You work another three days with another twenty-four hour break. You would then work another three day shift and then you are allowed three consecutive days off. It continues the same after that.

Infantry- Specially trained soldiers who fight while on foot.

Honorable Discharge- A member of the military is relieved of their duty (obligation) to serve. This is received if the soldier has not done anything to merit dishonorable discharge. It is given if the soldier has high ratings of service in the military and either receives an injury in the line of duty or receives an award due to gallantry in action, heroism, or other meritorious service.

Dishonorable Discharge- (DD) A soldier receives this if they have done something that is dishonorable. This is usually part of a punishment and can only be given by a general court-martial.

WAC- Women's Army Corps

Taps- The famous music often played at flag ceremonies and funerals usually on the trumpet or bugle. It is sometimes called “Butterfield’s Lullaby” or by the lyrics of the second verse “Day is Done.”

Civilian- People who are not a member of the armed forces.

Comrade- Friend, ally, or colleague.

Military Rank- System of hierarchical relationships that keep control and command of troops.

Platoon- Military unit consisting of 2-4 sections with about 30-50 soldiers. It is typically the smallest military unit which is led by a commissioned officer.

Company- Military unit of about 75-200 soldiers which consists of about 3-5 platoons depending on the country, unit type, and structure.

Field Sight Notes
Hours 7am-3:30pm
Veterans Hall is right next to the post office.
A few trees and bushes outside around the building.
White building with blue trim and three front doors.
There is a wheel chair ramp in front with railing.
There is an entry foyer with pamphlets about events and projects.
Restrooms are right after the foyer, men on one side and women on the other side of the hall.
There is a good sized auditorium with a stage and flags.
Tables and chairs are not set up in the auditorium. (They get set up by the person who is hosting an event. Apparently they also have to clean after the event and pay for any damage that may have been incurred.)
The building has some wooden and carpeted floors.
No bad smells and it seems pretty clean overall.

Verbal Snapshot

I had a hard time figuring out if the Veterans Memorial Hall was exactly the place I wanted for my field sight but in the end I decided it would be one of my best options. There are meetings held for different military groups all throughout the month so I am going to try to go to one if possible. These are not the only meetings held at the Memorial Hall however, there are also events that people can rent the hall for.
I parked on the street because there are not a whole lot of parking spots at the Memorial Hall itself. I did not look around for too long due to not having much time in my schedule. There were not any meetings at the time that I looked at the building. There were pamphlets right inside the foyer for people to look at and take concerning projects and events coming up. I did look at the pamphlets but I forgot to grab one so the next time I go I will make sure to do that.
The auditorium was a pretty good size and had a stage at the front. The stage had two flags on it; the American flag and what I believe is the Christian flag. The chairs and tables lined the auditorium because it was not being used at the time. The people who host an event must set up the tables and chairs for their needs. The building seemed very clean and even smelled clean. The people that put on events or hold meetings are responsible for cleaning the bathrooms and auditorium afterward. They must also pay for any damages that might have been incurred during the event.


Reading an Artifact

The artifact that I chose is the Airman’s Manual. This manual is good for boot camp and everyday life. It is designed for people going into the Air Force but applies elsewhere also. There are different sections of the manual which are Staying Ready, Deploy, Employment, Fight, Survive and then a quick reference.
v Staying Ready talks about getting personal affairs ready before boot camp and basically is for making preparations.
v Deploy talks about preparations before being deployed, gives warnings, and advice about to handle some situations. Protective equipment and uniform is shown and how to wear it properly.
v Employment talks about the jobs you may encounter and have. It gives you a quick reference to what bombs may look like, health care concerns, dangerous animals, mental health, cleaning, how to inspect, and use your common sense.
v Fight talks about security and how to handle attacks. It has a quick reference for your basic guns and how to put them together.
v Survive talks about chemicals and what you need to look out for when being attacked. It shows you how to wear the gas mask and how to live with it on because you may not be able to even take it off for quite a while. This is also where first aide is talked about and how to protect yourself.
v Quick reference lets you know anything that would be important that you may need to see real quickly.