I heard yesterday about how in the USA, the military are conspicuously targeting the recruitment of young sports fans by increasing their presence at sports events, especially football and motor racing.
In Ireland we faced these pressures 100 years ago. Local historian Simone Hickey, in preparation for an event in Sligo which will mark the loss of lives of over 600 local men in World War I, recently told me and some others about Pal’s Brigades. Army recruiters deliberately used peer pressure in order to try and convince friends of already enlisted men to join the army themselves. The below picture is of a 1915 poster used in this drive.
These pressures can be difficult to resist, and did and still do lead to many young men around the world spending their days and sometimes losing their lives in terrible circumstances.
We are lucky to live in a peaceful land. No such stresses exist for young men in our country and in many countries in the world. This means we have the freedom to use our time and our minds in productive, creative and generous ways.
Make the most of it.