Why Is Progressive Using "Recent Military Service" To Determine Rates And Eligibility?

[Update: Progressive responded and clarified that the fine print does NOT mean they will use military service to give you a higher rate.] We got this email tonight from Ceaser, who wants to know why his military service would negatively affect his car insurance:

While searching for new car insurance on progressive and sadly other insurance carriers, figuring what the rate check would be I answered a few questions. Some questions asked were if I was currently in the military and in college, I am both. As an Iraq war Army vet I am currently going to school with the GI bill, and tuition assistance from the Air national guard, so I put that I am both a student and national guard.

Well before I used to call and verify information and just to see if anything was available if there was any sort of military discount available. As always I get told that the prices were low enough that not to require a discount, or that military discounts weren’t available from the company, as in Progressive. Geico does give a military discount but their rates are so jacked up that there really isn’t a discount, actually $300+ w/ military discount over my progressive, state farm, and sad to say allstate. Anyhow I come to the final page and in the fine print I see this:

  Your rate may vary, or you may not be offered a quote, due to eligibility requirements (you may not qualify for that program), credit history, recent military service, or driving record (if your actual record is different than what you told us). If you have been assigned to your recent automobile insurance policy by the state, or if any of the drivers you listed requires proof of financial responsibility, your rate may be higher than those provided by this comparison service. [emphasis ours -Editor]

Now my question is this. With news that 1 in 5 soldiers coming back from Iraq have mental, health, PTSD issues, not to mention the suicide rate climbing among periods of deployments. Long term deployments having stress issues and coping when coming back. Could these news be used to proclaim that Military might be a higher risk therefore lets bend you over and take your money? I hope not but then again most of these companies don’t care other than the bottom line. Any insight or help would greatly be appreciated.

Any Progressive lurkers out there who can chime in on the “recent military service” fine print and just how it’s used to determine your eligibility and rate?