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Rank and Patches on Military Jackets - Might I Offend a Veteran?

Discussion in 'WWII' started by scotrace, Jan 16, 2006.

  1. Retromoto

    Retromoto One of the Regulars

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    While my father was in two branches of the armed forces during and just after WWII, I would never wear a piece of clothing with insignia, rank, or any other indications I was in the service, I feel it's wrong to do so. I recently walked away from a deal on a Navy N1 Deck jacket due to it having "Navy" insignia on it. If I did not earn it, I won't wear it in respect to those who did. JMO
    G.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019 at 12:27 AM
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  2. Edward

    Edward Bartender

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    Interesting, thanks.

    Interesting, too, that Royal Stewart tartan doesn't have to same direct popular association with the military as Government. It's considered a 'generic' that anyone can wear nowadays - the logic is, apparently, that it is the monarch's personal tartan, and as the monarch's "subjects", we are all entitled to wear it in the same manner as a groundskeeper or other servant might be entitled to wear the estate tweed. (Though TBH I subscribe largely to the view that as tartan as we know it in kilt form is largely a late-Victorian fantasy anyhow, these things don't much matter....).
     
  3. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    In America, the Royal Stewart Tartan is instantly recognizable to any former first-grader who carried an Aladdin "red plaid" lunch box.
     
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  4. ChiTownScion

    ChiTownScion One Too Many

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    No qualms whatsoever about wearing my A-2 or ANJ-4 jackets: they're warm, durable, and stylish.

    As far as any attempt at stolen honor or such: people can look at me and see that I'm not in my mid- 90's and didn't wear them in combat: I'm retired myself, and Hap Arnold ended horsehide and shearling standard issue more than ten years before I was coughed into the cradle, so anyone who was there knows that my jackets are reproduction.


    Now, would I wear a jacket with the nose art of the time as a tribute? Only if the jacket at some place noted the name of the man I am honoring and his last date alive with the addition, "KIA." That's my way of showing respect, and it clearly states that I'm not trying to be someone I'm not. It's on the bucket list, and I have in mind a particular plane and pilot, a fighter pilot who lost his life while taking down the Luftwaffe's finest who were trying to target my dad (and many others, of course) who were on the ground in France at that time in 1944. Were it not for men like that pilot I might not have ever come to be. And if someone comes up and asks the backstory, I'm pleased to do so.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2019
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  5. Doctor Jones

    Doctor Jones Familiar Face

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    It's wonderful how, as each of the old Scottish Highland regiments has been amalgamated or abolished, their Canadian brothers continue on.

    In 1959 the Cameron Highlanders and the Seaforth Highlanders (of Scotland) were amalgamated to become the Queens Own Highlanders. In Canada they retained their separate identity. Ditto in 1994 when the Queens Own Highlanders were in turn amalgamated with the Gordon Highlanders to form The Highlanders.

    Now the entire Scottish infantry has been merged into a single uber-regiment, The Royal Regiment Of Scotland. Only in the Dominions do the old Scottish regiments continue.

    BTW there was an interesting film on YouTube about the Black Watch of Canada receiving their first Francophone commanding officer. A really cool guy, dedicated to preserving both the Highland heritage and the French one.
     
  6. Guess I just don't get it. Why would you offend a Veteran by wearing just a patched jacket or a few military items to display how you may honor a certain division, person, or battle? I am a Viet Nam era Army veteran and find no offence unless someone is in 'full' uniform trying to dishonestly pose as something they are not. I was awarded some patches, etc..but also earned some rank and medals too. However, If you want to put a Van Brown name strip on an Army fatigue jacket with Sergeant stripes and Drill Sgt. patch..feel free. If I see it worn I'll introduce myself and thank you for the recognition.
    HD
     
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  7. Edward

    Edward Bartender

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    Heh. Shortbread tins carry it over here; it's also thed default lining for just about any Harrington-type jacket that's not an actual Baracuta G9.

    I think it depends on a certain mentality; the tribalist type of military man who regards the markings as his "colours", and fixates on the idea of who is "entitled" to wear them. I've seen it happen with a lot of things over the years - certain military regalia, tartans, w.h.y.. Back in the 70s, a certain Teddy Boy tendency (this at the peak of Ted revivalism) would attack punks they saw wearing brothel creeper shoes. Those were Ted shoes - punks, as far as the Teds were concerned, had no right to be wearing them. Even today some older Teds still maintain the same tribal hatred of punks (this largely roots in the London punk scene's contemporary declaration that 1977 was Year Zero, 'Rock'n'roll is dead', and such). A certain proportion of any group or category of people will always define themselves against all others, and become jealously possessive over "their" things. To be fair, I can understand it to some extent when it comes to things like, say, a regimental symbol from Nam: if I'd been conscripted into those conditions, watched comrades being killed and having to kill other humans myself, even in self-defence, I couldn't honestly say for certain that I wouldn't be a bit irked when I saw somebody prancing about unthinkingly wearing it as a fashion item.
     
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  8. MisterCairo

    MisterCairo I'll Lock Up

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    I think you would agree there is a wee bit of a difference between military rank insignia, awards and medals, which are in fact "earned", i.e., the wearer is "entitled" to wear them, and the fashion accoutrements of those listening to a certain type of music.

    Whatever one's views on the military (full disclosure - I am a serving officer the in the Royal Canadian Navy JAG), these things, mere "patches" to some, are important precisely because they are earned. Buy whatever you want from ebay or the local flea market, wear it, but be prepared to be asked questions.

    We are internally consistent on these things by the way. That is, about once per year a serving member is charged with wearing a medal, ribbon or other earned distinguishing mark they did not in fact earn. We had a female lieutenant-colonel not only charged and convicted for wearing an unearned medal, she was STRIPPED of a high honour (Order of Military Merit) she HAD EARNED as a result of the conviction. It was the first time in Canadian military history that order had been rescinded for a serving member (another former officer, immediately on being convicted of murder and rape, had all his honours cancelled and destroyed).

    Again, wear what you want. Just recognize that some people find this important, and a wee bit beyond fashion.

    Crepe sole shoes in any event should not be worn by anyone... ;-)

     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
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  9. I do find my Military service 'important' and also what I 'earned' by serving. I don't know anything about a 'Ted'...what they are or were...or details about the Canadian armed forces. Here in the US we did have war protesters who wore military rank upside down or some other public demonstration of 'dis'honor. They could easily receive my ire and disapproval. However, again, it's fairly easy for me to distinguish between honor and dishonor and someone attempting to pose as military. Why get caught up in confronting someone too young to serve in WW2 or Viet Nam but wear a few patches, etc honoring those who did. I sure don't consider that fashion...but even if some of it is...then it still seems like it is celebrating military. Even though I'm a vet, I'm not suppose to be wearing full uniform..but if I'm wearing my old fatigue jacket with military insignia..don't you dare approach me with eyebrow raised and stern look on your face ready to scold me about what I'm wearing. I have a G1 Navy jacket with Navy insignia and my best friends name on it that my he gave me after returning from his service. I sometimes wear it proudly. If you ask me about it in a friendly way I may explain. Questioning me in another tone may earn you a very stern and serious 'bug off'.
    HD
     
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  10. Edward

    Edward Bartender

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    We might not equate them, but my point is some do, and it's all the same psychology involved in terms of those who would seek to police what others wear. That said, I was primarily thinking of military regalia in general in that post; I would be inclined to be more wary around symbolism where there is a distinct criteria against which the right to wear them must be 'earned'. I can certainly understand that grating.

    Ultimately, I think that's what it comes down to: if someone is not perpetuating a fraudulent claim to be what they are not or to carry medals and such they did not 'earn', then there seems little value in anyone instigating confrontation.
     
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  11. Story

    Story I'll Lock Up

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    I ran into someone who had *great* stories and since they were just too good, did some background digging on him. He had one of those late Cold War flight jackets all patched up, and a photo of him wearing it while squatting on the wing of a fighter jet. He used this photo to enhance his dating opportunities. Unfortunately for him, someone else ran the visible serial number and figured out that it was a display aircraft located near where he lived. Busted.
     
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  12. Story

    Story I'll Lock Up

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    1) JAG down here is getting more serious about dealing with these sort of shenanigans.
    https://taskandpurpose.com/military-crimes-ucmj-changes-2019

    2) One of 'ours'. Enjoy the Stupid Factor, cranked up to 11. I'll bet $20 he wore all sorts of memorabilia in public,

    Keith R. Hudson, 71, was sentenced to six months in jail and six months of home confinement after falsely claiming to be a Vietnam veteran and receiving nearly $200,000 in benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    He's also been ordered to pay $297,327 in restitution.

    According to a news release from the Justice Department, Hudson never served in the military, yet he was able to get VA bennies by saying he received two Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star for service in Vietnam.

    In 2005, Hudson was prosecuted in Connecticut for bilking the VA after claiming to be a vet, but was placed in pretrial diversion. He moved to South Carolina and in 2012, used the same falsified DD-214 discharge document he used before, which claimed he was a Navy medic who was wounded sometime between 1967 and 1971.

    Hudson did a particularly bad job in making up service details on his supposed Navy DD-214. According to a June DOJ release, he said his rank was Hospitalman at the pay grade of E-4 (the actual pay grade is E-3); he gave himself a Combat Medic Badge (an Army award); and the form said he received the "Fleet Marine Force Medal with Marine Device," which is not even a thing.

    https://taskandpurpose.com/stolen-valor-twice-jail

    3) Might want to read this and pass along
    FOREIGN TROLLS ARE TARGETING VETERANS ON FACEBOOK
    https://www.wired.com/story/trolls-are-targeting-vets-on-facebook/
     
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  13. Story

    Story I'll Lock Up

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    I'll suggest that the guilty parties often reveal themselves for what they really are.

    8pm (or 20.00 hours, if you will) at the local supermarket.

    It's nearly empty, I'm minding my own business and I turn into an aisle to come face to face with an older (60-70, hard to tell) tall (6') gaunt guy.
    Indicator 1) He's wearing sunglasses.
    Indicator 2) He's wearing one of these hats.
    https://www.priorservice.com/nasevi...MIuISgnvPw3wIVDI3ICh09AAs_EAQYBSABEgKZ3vD_BwE

    I look at his hat.
    I make direct eye contact.
    I say nothing.
    I look at his hat.
    I make direct eye contact.
    I say nothing.

    His response: "You don't know me".

    Yes. Yes I do.
     
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  14. Indicator of what..?? He could have had a Son who was a Navy Seal or some one else near and dear to honor. Hell I'm 71 and was in the Army during Vietnam. Guess I just don't get what you are trying to say. I can't remember if Navy Seals where even in service then. It's just a hat..so what. This is what irritates me. Someone in full uniform that may seem suspicious or fraudulent because of mismatched medals or insignia is quite a different issue than those just wearing a few military items for reasons that they don't even need to explain.
    HD
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019 at 12:57 AM
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  15. GHT

    GHT I'll Lock Up

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    Agreed, but I do like the British act of remembrance for a fallen member of the military, when a relative wears the bravery medal, awarded to member of the military who fell, whilst on active duty, on the right instead of the military left, at a service of commemoration.
     
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  16. Story

    Story I'll Lock Up

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    1. Indicator that he was a liar. His reaction confirmed it.
    2. How do you get that he might have had a son, when I posited that his age was about that of Vietnam era?
    3. SEALs certainly were in Vietnam. They're also the most likely to be the target of stolen valor. Read this
    http://wbsm.com/retired-navy-seal-don-shipley-exposes-stolen-valor-opinion/

    http://www.stolenvalor.com/target.cfm?sort=date
     
  17. My mistake..I was just so taken aback that you would confront a guy that you didn't know in a store. I don't get why you were upset about a cap enough to stare him down. If I was wearing a Vietnam era Drill Sgt cap and you looked me right in my face with an odd stare, I might feel uneasy enough to answer that way although I surely was a DSGT. Don't keep staring, it might bite you in the arse.
     
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  18. I read your links and am very aware that there are frauds out there. I've even run into a few. However you seemed to have stared at that guy on a hunch that he never was a Navy Seal or honoring one. You even suggest that his reaction to a stranger's intentional glare and stare was somehow an admission of a phony. Why didn't you just ask him if he was a Navy Seal or about his cap?

    Like I posted before, I have a patched up 1968 tribute G-1 that my best friend wore while a chief in the Navy. Before he died he gave it to me. I was never in the Navy yet I wear it on occasion. If confronted by a stranger I don't feel like I owe an explanation. If someone should ask if I was in the Navy..of course I would answer..nope.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019 at 5:22 AM
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  19. MisterCairo

    MisterCairo I'll Lock Up

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    On Thursday last, I had the honour to be promoted to the rank of Commander, and appointed Deputy AJAG, 4th Canadian Division.

    I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all those who have recently purchased through ebay, kajiji, Craigslist or, old school, your local flea market (boot sale to you, Edward) some one else's uniform item, medals, ribbons or other decorations.

    WELL DONE YOU!

    I salute you.
     
  20. MisterCairo

    MisterCairo I'll Lock Up

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    Location:
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    In Canada we had an infamous incident during Remembrance Day a couple of years back. Buddy wore a full current uniform, medals galore, interviewed live on air by the CBC - never served a day in his life.

    His wife was at a loss for words when asked why he wore "his" uniform - AT THEIR WEDDING.

    Link to follow.
     

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