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Research paper topic: Values: A Code Of Honor - 834 words
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Values: A Code Of Honor Values: A Code of Honor I believe it is a great idea to put the Army's core values on a plastic dog tag and require us to wear them around our necks. It's a great reminder to us of who and what we are. But more importantly it's a reminder to soldiers of what to look for in their leaders. Maybe that's what has so many leaders irate enough to write letters and articles about how offensive it is when they are reminded of the Army's values. No one ever learned values by being given a card, tag or anything else with a list of values on it.
But I fear too many of us are getting so wrapped up in this thought that we've lost track of what's important. Where do values come from? As a child, did my parents make a list of things to tell me how to conduct my life? Treat others? Treat myself? Did they hang the list around my neck? No, they didn't. Instead, they modeled for me how I should live as an adult. Notice I said modeled for me how I should live not would live.person shift- the subject of notice is understood to be "you" That modeling by my parents and other influential adults provided me with my values, not a list hanging around my neck. The same is true for soldiers. Soldiers don't and will not learn values by wearing them on a tag around their neck.
They learn the values modeled by their leaders and more specifically their NCO leaders. Whether those values compliment the Army's core values, or something else, does not matter. What matters is that the values modeled for soldiers are the values learned by soldiers. That's a sobering thought, and it should be. So maybe those little tags and cards do serve a valuable purpose as constant reminders of what we must model for our soldiers - and now the soldiers know it. To get at the crux of the issue, I only have to look to one value.
That's the Army's core value of Honor. Honor as a value means that I live within a prescribed code. In my case it means that Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage are significantly more than a list of words. Leaders who live within the Army's Code of Honor model those values. I model them uncompromisingly and insist that other soldiers and leaders do the same.
What I find odd lately is the rash number of noncommissioned officers claiming to be offended by being given a values card and tag. Claiming that we've wasted the defense budget and offended their honor and any number of other things. frag My questions is: Was I just as offended when given a Code of Conduct card to carry? Do I have a copy of the Oath of Enlistment or The NCO Creed nearby? A good friend of mine and I were discussing this recently. I asked him what he thought of some of these reactions and he said, You know what Sgt. Ritchie, I think it's the hit dog that barks the loudest. Could it be that all of this negativity is fear that we can't or don't model those values that our soldiers and I are now constantly reminded of? Do I think that spouting off a bunch of negative cynicism is modeling the values? Another friend of mine, who is an influential soldier in our Army told me, Too many people look for the bad in something before they look for the good in it.
In this case he was right on target. There is potential for a major failure out there however. And, from the rumblings, it looks as though some units are heading that way. If leadership turns values into a program, it's failed. Our values, their importance, and how we model them deserve a lot of discussion at all levels of leadership, but they have no place on a Quarterly Training Briefing slide. Values are the code of Honor we claim to live by.
The challenge that lies ahead for all in the uniformed services is an unfailing commitment to do the right thing in every walk of life. At times the right path can prove to be elusive. There are various reasons for this, be it bureaucracy, politics or hypocritical leadership. One cannot allow others misgivings to interfere with one's own actions. We must be forthright and relentless in the pursuit of truth. Leaders at all levels must demand of themselves, their peers, their leaders and subordinates, a standard of conduct beyond reproach.
It sounds like a great idea to me, and I admire your belief in it. I wear a little angel pin on my shoulder to remind me of what I believe in. Visual reminders are, I think, good for all of us. That's why I hang my flag on my balcony every day. Social Issues.
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