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A question to veterans


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What is your view on civilian people wearing squadron patches? I know ranks are a big no-no, but what about squadron insignia, especially older units?

 

On one hand one has to earn the right to belong to a squadron, it's not a matter of just sewing it on.

 

On the other hand, especially if it's a WW2/ Korea/ Vietnam squadron, and one wears it out of respect, to let the world know what those brave men did, in a way, maybe it can be looked at differently. After all, in DCS we are flying with historical skins, and not because we pretend to be part of that unit.

 

What do you think?

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I am an Australian veteran and we don't seem to have the same kind of patriotism here, but I don't think it really matters what people wear or their reasons for doing so.

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As long as your not wearing an uniform or pretending to be something you are not, I do not think it matters about the patches.


Edited by mvsgas

To whom it may concern,

I am an idiot, unfortunately for the world, I have a internet connection and a fondness for beer....apologies for that.

Thank you for you patience.

 

 

Many people don't want the truth, they want constant reassurance that whatever misconception/fallacies they believe in are true..

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sometimes it is the civvies who keep the memory and the spirit alive for many units.

 

As long as there are no Walter Mitty's using it for malice I see no issue.

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As long as your not wearing an uniform or pretending to be something you are not, I do not think it matters about the patches.

 

This.

 

Squadrons are the units one is assigned to. That being said, wearing the patches is not so much an earned thing but an identifier of where one has been.

Additionally, squadrons will actually sell squadron patches and other items such as t-shirts, jackets, coins, et cetera, to civilians at airshows and other events so no, there is not any sort of taboo against the wearing of squadron patches. If you are lucky, you will spark up a conversation with someone who was actually in the squadron and maybe learn a little more from their anecdotes.

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I am a vietnam era vet...I see it all the time from WWII to modern day. Does not bother me at all as long as it is in good taste and done in a respectful way.

 

Friend of mine often wears his uncles actual WWII Flying Tigers A2 jacket with insignia and silk Blood Chit on back.

 

I have always been jealous of that one.


Edited by MegOhm_SD

 

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  • 11 months later...

I think most of us vets are fine with it. I think most people wear some type of military clothing, regalia or insignia out of respect, admiration or just plain interest in the military. Just like me wearing my pro football teams jersey. Doesn't mean I am a pro football player. I'm just a fan.

 

But as like we are all saying, Don't tell people you are a "pro football player" just because you have the jersey....if ya know what I mean. ;)

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As an air to air photographer, I wear a bag simply because it's a solid color (Canopy reflections are a bitch) and the calf pockets are handy. I wear no insignia nor patches because I have never earned any.

 

The Red Star Pilots Association (in which there are many former military pilots) hung the name "Emmy" on me because I used to work in Sports TV and have earned eight Emmy Awards but I have yet to even have a name patch made because I simply don't think I've even earned that right, yet.

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I used to work in Sports TV and have earned eight Emmy Awards

 

Thats quite an accomplishment. Kudos to you.

 

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At least in the UK about 25 years ago it was seen quite harshly from the inside out, but at that time we couldnt wear uniform in public due to the Troubles so it was quite a different culture from the American one. In the US I understand individuals can wear their units commendations, whereas in the UK soldiers wear only personal achievements/medals. There also was a mistrust of civilians wearing any military uniform, as BIGNEWY said, we called them Walter Mitty's, or people living in a dream world. Unit's Colours are sacred things to be protected in the UK with very strict rules, the culture extends someways to berets, unit emblems, I imagine still, despite half our armed forces units being amalgamted and put in museums.

 

I've personally grown from that stance to warm to the more Americanised way of popularising the military, celbrating it's cause and supporting it. I'd still never wear any unit emblem, ever, at all, that I had no relationship with and I get funny with things like liveries or in Arma, what unit emblems I would gravitate to.

But the world has changed and as you get older, there's a much larger allowance for what is acceptable. Men can wear dresses and still be a man. Older historical squadrons are probably in, current ones likely out? If the reasoning is sound, go with it. Just mind you get judged by people.

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Imho, if I wore a university sweatshirt I would expect conversations to start with, “ So...did you go there?”

 

And as long as I quickly owned up to the fact I’d never gone to that university, all is well.

 

That being said, some military things should never be worn unless earned, like medals for valor, the EGA (USMC), or the Combat Infantry Badge (US Army).

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I can't understand why anyone who hasn't been a member of a club; organisation or unit, would want to, or be accepted, wearing insignia to which they have no entitlement. Basking in the glory of people that actually served when you have no reason to is a bit weird I think.

 

That said, if memorabilia and merchandising is sold openly by those organisations, then they cannot criticise people for wearing what they buy - as long as it isn't used to create a false impression.

 

Personally, I wouldn't openly wear even the insignia I am entitled to. I don't like tee shirts with designer brand logos on them. But that's just me. What are people trying to prove? Brand loyalty?

 

There are however appropriate veterans caps and stuff like that, and it is normal for a close relative to wear a deceased veterans medals - on the opposite side of the chest to normal. Honouring the memories of war veterans, at the right time and place is a good thing.

 

It is a free world (mostly), so if people choose to associate themselves with anything at all, it is up to them - even if doing so makes them look dumb to the world at large.

 

As for the Walter Mitty characters - they deserve only pity. There's clearly a problem with impersonation of any kind.

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As someone else said... as long as you aren't pretending you are military when you are not... it's fine.

 

^^This.

 

I own a lot of aviation/military themed hats. However, I do not own any of the, fairly common, veteran hats. I know too many people that have earned the right to wear them so I would never do so, since I have not earned that right. I have an Arizona memorial hat that I have displayed in my home, but I would never wear it.

 

My M*A*S*H 4077 hat is a different matter. ;)


Edited by cichlidfan

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I went to an airshow in Cold Lake. They were selling 410 Cougar T-shirts and Polo shirts. I bought one of each. I wore both on a fairly regular basis.

One day at the grocery store a lady and her husband noted the polo shirt and my first words were that I had bought it at an airshow and had no military background, only appreciation. Turned out the husband was a former CF-18 pilot. We talked for about 15 minutes and went back to shopping. Its all good as long as your not a poser.

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Thats quite an accomplishment. Kudos to you.

 

<S>

 

Thanks very much. Proud of them but more grateful for the personal associations involved with the gigs I worked over the years. There are some amazing people in the broadcasting world who really don't get the credit they deserve year in and year out.

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