Thursday, January 3, 2019

Not a Parody: British Army Seeks "Snow Flakes", "Binge Gamers" and "Selfie Addicts" in New Recruitment Posters

What could be more symbolic of the emasculated and decadent state of much of Western Europe than this silly new recruitment campaign by the British Army?

The "snowflake" even has a sort of Morrissey This Charming Man expression.

Then again, the pro-Brexit, anti-Islam Morrissey is looking pretty good these days.

From Bianca Britton at CNN:
If you're a millennial who's addicted to taking selfies, video gaming or consider yourself a class clown, you could be exactly what the British Army is looking for. 
For its 2019 recruitment campaign, "Your Army Needs You," the army is seeking recruits from the "snowflake generation." 
The army drew inspiration from the World War I-era "Your Country Needs You" poster featuring Field Marshal Lord Kitchener, and recreated a series of videos and posters to attract people between the ages of 16 and 25. 
The posters feature six soldiers labeled with stereotypes of younger people, before listing a positive value for each that would be welcomed by the army. 
"Selfie addicts" have confidence, "snowflakes" have compassion, "phone zombies" have focus, "binge gamers" have drive, "class clowns" have spirit, and "me me me millennials" have self-belief, according to the posters. 
The army says the campaign shows young people who are ambitious and feel undervalued have the potential to work for a job with "real purpose" and "do meaningful work."

It also released several ads featuring young people being labeled a stereotype before portraying them in army roles working abroad in war zones and providing humanitarian relief. 
Portrayed is a late-night video gamer who the army claims has "stamina," and a slow supermarket worker who is bullied by her colleagues but who is described by the campaign as a "perfectionist" who's "resilient." Another video portrays a worker fooling around in the office, followed by the line: "there's always room for people with a bit of spirit."
The campaign comes after it was revealed last year that the British Army failed to meet recruitment targets, with only 77,000 fully trained troops compared to its 82,500 target. 

Read the full story here.

I was initially shocked when I saw the 77,000 figure. That seems to be barely enough soldiers to suppress a flashmob attack on an Apple store. But in fairness it appears to be roughly equivalent per capita to the approximately 500,000 uniformed regulars in the US Army.

For comparison, the size of the British Army was around 3 million in 1945. I'm not suggesting they go back to wartime levels but still.

Speaking as someone who was once 16 to 25, I can't imagine this effort will be successful. Who would want to devote multiple years in the prime of one's life (with a small chance one might lose it) to an outfit so creepily patronizing? Whatever else modern young people might be, they're not stupid, or at least one assumes they would have a nose for this sort of bull.

It's a bit like the pitch for the Novus Ordo - come hang out with us on Sunday morning, we promise your experience will be just as banal as the rest of your life.

No thank you, Fr. Longenecker, I'll be attempting to better my sorry lot by attending the TLM.


  1. Oakes, your last two sentences are priceless. I'm old-ish, and I can tell you that I laughed at the left-wing university students sent to recruit us in my high school years ago to outdo the neighboring small town in birth control use and unwanted pregnancies. Hilarious, in a strange way. At fifteen years old, I could outsmart the university students. That shows how poorly educated they were. And it shows how poorly prepared the British military is, to attempt the same tired 'argument'.

  2. This 'recruiting' campaign looks like a Monty Python sketch!

  3. Speaking of Fr. Longenecker, I would love to know why Dr. Peter Kwasniewski finds his new book on the possible identity of the Magi to be "compelling," when it fact it undermines Scripture.

    1. Do you remember where Kwasniewski used the term, "compelling"? In that recent 1P5 post he merely said that the book was "interesting", which I think is almost a polite insult.

    2. Why do you think it undermines Scripture and more importantly what Church teaching is undermined?