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Respect
Last Post 21 Apr 2011 08:23 PM by MasterGuns2077. 17 Replies.
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MasterGuns2077User is Offline
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MasterGuns2077

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20 Apr 2011 02:44 AM
    This is a bit of an abstract question, but it's one I've struggled with since my decision to join the Coast Guard.  I'm hoping anyone with service experience can give me some kind of answer.
    I grew up in the Marine Corps JROTC program.  I loved it, every day of it.  Within the program I grew to love the Marine Corps, its battle history, it's pride and strength.  In spite of all that, the Coast Guard always seemed like something I would rather do.  I never pursued it until now for the simple fact that it WASN'T the Marine Corps.
    That background still colors my ideas today.  Most of my friends in the military or entering the military are a part of the Marine Corps.  Of course I'm proud of them all, proud of their sacrifices and of their strength.  I'm proud to know them.  
    At the same time, I wonder why some of them don't seem to feel the same about me?  And it is not just them, it's many people whom I've told that I'm joining the Coast Guard.  Most are respectful, but some speak to me as if I'm joining something less than an armed service of the United States.  "But that's not the real military" or "oh well you won't get hurt doing that".  I know that for some it's merely a pissing contest between boot camps, but for many, and I hate to say this, it seems that a body count is the most important factor in determining the worth of the work a service does (as in members lost to war).  
    My background makes this something difficult for me to deal with since I was raised in a culture where bloody battles abound.
    I know much of the battle history of the Coast Guard.  I tell people whenever I can about Douglas Munro, about Nathan Bruckenthal, but to some these brave men seem to be the exception to the rule for the Coast Guard.  In other words, to some self-sacrifice isn't something the Coast Guard does at all.
    I feel that this is what I want to do, that it's what I'm meant to do, yet I at times I feel as though the service I would render means little, if anything, to those I would be serving.  Indeed, many don't believe me when I tell them that the Coast Guard is an armed service.
    I've grown to feel strongly that the work I will do in the Coast Guard is essential to the safety and security of our nation, and I am not looking for recognition.  I know that if the Coast Guard did what they do for Fame or Glory, they "would be constantly be disappointed." Yet at times it seems like the Coast Guard does not get the same level of respect as other armed services and that upsets me.
    How does a Guardian deal with this?  Since I'm not one yet, I'd like to know how those serving now deal with it when people question the worth of their sacrifice and of their work in general.
    Thank you for any responses.
    Your passion for what you do will set you free.
    GearsUser is Offline
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    Gears

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    20 Apr 2011 05:40 AM
    Next time someone questions us as a military service you can tell them about 14 USC http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/u...-000-.html

    “I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.” ― Bruce Lee
    Old Guard2User is Offline
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    20 Apr 2011 06:57 AM
    Ask someone lifted off a roof in New Orleans after Katrina what they think of the Coast Guard. Ask the fisherman whose boat sank and he is floating in freezing cold, stormy weather what he thought when he saw that helo coming towards him. Ask the crew member of a tanker ship that fell down a ladder and fractured his leg, hundreds of miles at sea what he thought about the CG showing up and getting him medical attention and to a hospital in a day's time. Trust me, it will not be "What do you do for your service?" That will not be the response you get!!!

    Sure there is interservice rivalry and there is ribbing and there is also a general misunderstanding of what each branch does. because of that misuderstanding there is often a lack of respect. Just let it roll off your back like water off a duck. There are people that have no understanding of my job, of what a cop does, of what a surgeon goes through, of what a pharmacist has to do for schooling to "just count pills". There will always be misunderstanding and lack of appreciation in jobs... Just do waht is best for you, something you love and do it to the very best of your ability. If people don't appreciate you... to hell with them. The only person you have to answer to is the one looking back at you in the mirror!
    Sector NY, Staten Island
    TheBigC1234User is Offline
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    20 Apr 2011 07:29 AM
    As previously stated "to the hell with them" people that think what the Coast Guard does and that it's not part of the armed forces. Also keep in mind while the rest of the armed forces are usually training for missions which some may or may never partake in we are conducting our missions on a daily basis. (refer to a typical day in the coast guard) Also the coast guard is the hardest branch to get into and there are 41,000 of us compared to the rest which are in the hundreds of thousands.

    It sounds like you are born ready (lol) and this is what you want to do and have your mind set on that. So that's why you have to ignore the rest that talk down to you or the CG. there's no need to get up in arms over them.
    It's Hammer Time!!
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    20 Apr 2011 07:34 AM
    Posted By Gears on 20 Apr 2011 06:40 AM
    Next time someone questions us as a military service you can tell them about 14 USC http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/u...-000-.html


    That's what I do every time people say the Coast Guard is not a branch.

    On respect, my Marine Corps JROTC instructor has told me that if he had known what he knows now about the CG, that would have been his second choice for military branch. One thing to tell people is when the US is in peacetime, ask what the other branches do, then see what the CG does. Other branches just train for war, CG keeps working.
    RollzUser is Offline
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    20 Apr 2011 08:09 AM
    I know this may sound mean. Also inappropiate <-- forgot to spell. I tell this to my friends when they talk crap about cg. Somehow sometimes it works sometimes it just makes them even more pissed.



    I know is mean and all but i just say it for fun . They take it mean sometimes and sometimes it just works even though im just doing it for fun ^^
    Old Guard2User is Offline
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    20 Apr 2011 08:14 AM
    The dead thing is way, way too far overboard. Nothing laughable about that really. Both are probably enough to get your teeth knocked out but the dead thing, that's not even close to humorous on any level. I have also been to several Coast Guard funerals after a helo has gone down, trust me, not a time for jokes and laughing.
    Sector NY, Staten Island
    RollzUser is Offline
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    20 Apr 2011 08:24 AM
    Well thats how basically we are here. Aslong as no one is really dead we take it as fun . Like i said is just fun till something actually happens.

    *Not trying to disrespect no one really. Just that we are close friend people. So we talk like that to each other , thats all.
    Old Guard2User is Offline
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    20 Apr 2011 08:40 AM
    Do you want the last thing said to your friend to be "Guess who will have your wife?" I'm sorry... I have had many, many friends in my lifetime... never once have I joked about getting their spouse when they die! If a friend said to me something like that, they would no longer be in the friend category.
    Sector NY, Staten Island
    FloridaGirlUser is Offline
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    20 Apr 2011 08:42 AM
    Posted By TheBigC1234 on 20 Apr 2011 08:29 AM
    A Also keep in mind while the rest of the armed forces are usually training for missions which some may or may never partake in we are conducting our missions on a daily basis. 

    +100. 

    And to whoever thinks this service isn't self-sacrificing, ask the CG members stationed in New Orleans when Katrina hit.  They, like everyone else, had everything they had taken from them.  No more house, no more stuff, and where is the family dog?  But you know what, they still showed up and did their job.  In the face of all the horror, they saved lives.  That is some awesome strength, dedication, and self-sacrifice right there.  In fact one of the first things you will learn in CG boot camp is that this service is all about others before self.  And....you will learn that the hard way in boot too

    EDIT:  I took my oath.  I said I would die for my country.  But unlike the USMC, I'm not fighting for a set of ideals, or protecting a way of life back home. I am willing to die for those citizens who make up my country.  I am going to be their strength when all falls apart.  And if it comes to it, will trade my life for theirs.
    Honor: if you need it defined, you don’t have it.
    MasterGuns2077User is Offline
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    20 Apr 2011 09:16 AM
    Some great responses here, thanks all 
    Usually I do just let it roll off my back and carry on.  Sometimes I even revel in educating my friends.  One of my friends who graduated boot camp not too long ago congratulated me on my decision to join the CG but said off-handedly that it wasn't a real military service.  My girlfriend was like "oh no, don't get him going" 
    After a long discussion about the law and why the CG is DHS and DoD, and the story about Douglas Munro (when Chesty Puller needs rescuing, only the Coast Guard can pull it off ) he was a little bit speechless.  
    I know I shouldn't worry about validation, it just grinds my gears when people denounce the CG in a way that's not friendly ribbing between services.
    And Old Guard, I would add to your list "Ask the drug runner who's watching his boat sink from the deck of a cutter how effective the Coast Guard is "
    Your passion for what you do will set you free.
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    20 Apr 2011 03:49 PM
    I know people who looks at us the same way.I always prove them wrong when I talk to them about what we do.And at the end of the they,they pay their respects to the coast guards.
    The CG doesnt get that much exposure to the public thats why they look at us that way.But once you let those people know what we really do,they'll appreciate us even more.I love and respect all branches of our armed forces.we all have one mission,to serve and protect our country.
    Since we are the smallest branch in the service,we should have the saying, "the few,the proud." : )
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    20 Apr 2011 04:10 PM
    Coming in the Coast Guard from the Navy, I always had a high respect for the Coast Guard.  I've worked with many Marines and Sailors and respect and value their sacrifices.  I know I will come to love the Coast Guard and I am sure you will too.  We are all Americans protecting the American people, it doesn't matter what branch of service you are.  You may be disrespected by others, just make sure you respect yourself.
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    20 Apr 2011 04:26 PM
    The Coast Guard will always be the "red-headed" step child if you will of the armed services. The lack of respect will always be there as its basically a lack of education. I can only speak for myself, but no history teacher or civics teacher named the Coast Guard as part of the military when I grew up. Its mainly posted Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force. Then, sometimes "oh yea, Coast Guard".

    As I said before, in my opinion, its lack of education. I'm sure people don't know what it is we do and since were not under DOD, people automatically think it can't be military.
    BellsUser is Offline
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    21 Apr 2011 05:02 PM
    I've never regretted my decision to join the Coast Guard.

    If you want you can go to Bahrain. I tried but my ship doesn't let anyone leave unless they have orders to leave at the end of tour.

    You are going to run into people in other branches and everyone talks crap, just walk away from it. You are also going to run into civilians that don't know what they are talking about either. It's whatever. You know what you are doing and we are military and have to act like it all day long.
    Take what you like and leave the rest behind.
    MasterGuns2077User is Offline
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    21 Apr 2011 05:29 PM
    I'd like to go to Bahrain, but any decision like that is a long way off.  Gotta take it one step at a time.
    My instructors in JROTC knew nothing of the CG.  They always told me the Marines were the smallest branch.  They're over four times the size of the CG. 
    I wonder what kind of reception I'd get if I showed up at their office in a CG uniform after boot camp.  
    They were fine men, I think they were just ignorant.  I was too once.
    Your passion for what you do will set you free.
    Chisels1User is Offline
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    Chisels1

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    21 Apr 2011 07:32 PM
    I come from a family who have served in various branches. My dad never served but my Mom works in a major Firearms Company in the NE and handles Military, Government and Law Enforcement sales, both Domestic and Int'l. She has had contact with CG Personnel and they offer advice all the time. Everyone is proud of me selecting the Coast Guard, including my Uncle who is a Retired Marine and was a DI for awhile.

    When he was in Uniform, Holy Smokes but when he was at home he was a good ole boy from Georgia. My dad and him would fish, have a few brews and talk all night long, he was a real regular guy.

    He would rib my Older Brother when he joined the Army. When my Brother went to Iraq for 12 months then to Kuwait for 3 months as part of the Surge, my Uncle called to see how he was doing and was Proud of his deployment and sacrifice.My Brother was in a Combat MOS and returned a Purple Heart Veteran with numerous Army Citations and Ribbons.

    My Brother said he always thought I would join the Coast Guard, because I loved the water and the Marine Environment.

    I'm the first one to join a branch of service that work at Sea as well as land.

    Most are clueless but the real important Military Family members are Proud no matter waht branch you select.

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    21 Apr 2011 08:23 PM
    My family was almost an Air Force family. Grandfather was Army Air Corps during World War 2, B-24 copilot. AF reserves for a little while after that. Had an uncle go to the AF academy but bailed after the first semester. My Grandfater's been gone a long time now, but my grandmother assures me that he'd be proud of me. With as much time as he spent on his boat after the war, I'm surprised he didn't join the Auxiliary. The only thing he loved more than being on the water was being in the air.
    Other than that, my cousin was in the Coast Guard for four years. He loved it and especially seemed to love being underway, sometimes wishes he had stayed on for another hitch.
    Your passion for what you do will set you free.
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