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‘Can We Really Expect Our Soldiers to Have a High Feeling of Efficacy in Service to Our Country When Their Leadership Sends Such Mixed Messages of Mediocrity?’

October 4, 2021

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A recent Associated Press article highlighted the growing concern among military officials over the rising trajectory of military suicides. The number of U.S. military suicides jumped by 15% last year, with military leaders stating that they believe the COVID-19 pandemic is adding stress to military personnel. The report states, “Enlisted male service members under the age of 30 were most at risk for suicide. While they make up less than 42% of the total force, men under 30 accounted for about 63% of the suicide deaths.” In response to these statistics, military officials are attempting to reduce the stigma associated with seeking mental health assistance.

In addition to seeking professional help for mental illness, Judge Phil Ginn, president of Southern Evangelical Seminary (SES, ses.edu), provided another solution to this epidemic.

Ginn stated, “Make no mistake—suicide is tragic, especially so if it occurs in the younger population. The CDC tells us that the suicide rate for young people aged 10-24 increased by almost 60% between the years of 2007-2018. Now the U.S. military is visibly and rightly concerned about a 15% increase in suicides among their personnel in just the last year alone.

“As serious and tragic as these statistics are, they should come with little surprise,” Ginn continues. “In a culture that creates confusion with dehumanizing rhetoric that reduces our earthly significance, even the youngest among us are left rudderless and without perceived value in their lives.

“Regarding the military, can we really expect our soldiers to have a high feeling of efficacy in service to our country when their leadership sends such mixed messages of mediocrity? If our military leaders want to find the basic cause for the increased rate of suicide, maybe they should first begin looking at the pushing of a false ‘woke’ mentality as opposed to proper military readiness.

“Ultimately, we at SES understand that our individual worth does not, and never has, come from our circumstances. 1 Peter 1:18-19 urges us to ‘…[know] that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ.’ That’s the real worth of an individual and is the message all of us need to hear, especially our young men and women in the military.”

SES recently held the important livestreamed event, “Awaken,” on August 7, 2021. The event examined issues related to systemic racism in America, police violence, and people of color; the nature of true social justice; and how individuals can escape today’s “wokism.” Featured speakers included SES President Judge Phil Ginn, former police officer Eric Muldrow, and Monique Duson of the Center for Biblical Unity.

The mission of SES is to train men and women, based on the inerrant and infallible written Word of God, for the evangelization of the world and defense of the historic Christian faith. SES offers the 15-hour Certificate in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE).SES believes that one must minister to the present generation according to its needs—and to do so with truth and power. Students need training in the ethical, political and economic implications of the unchanging Faith “once delivered to the saints” (Jude 3). The PPE can also be used as a concentration within most master’s degrees (excluding Master of Arts in Religion).The combination of PPE training and classical seminary education can be a potent one in combating the new heresies and false doctrines rooted in a secularist, progressivist worldview.

For more information on SES, visit its website at www.ses.edu or its Facebook page, follow the SES Twitter feed, @sesapologetics, or call (704) 847-5600.


To interview a spokesperson for Southern Evangelical Seminary, contact Hamilton Strategies, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, Jeff Tolson, 610.584.1096, ext. 108, or Deborah Hamilton, ext. 102.