I found this comment on Joanne's article to be especially worthwhile:
JROTC, Civil Air Patrol, Police Explorers, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Sea Cadets (MY group) and other in and out of school related youth activities are primarily citizenship endeavors, promoting a love of country and teaching self-discipline and a sense of belonging. That some may (as in my case) lead to enlistment an/or a career in the military is not a bad thing. It doesn’t promote militarism (most of us don’t WANT to go to war - it’s our lives on the line after all!) but it does instill a love of country and a willingness to support and defend it not found in many other areas of our culture.