Posted on Jul 29, 2019
Capt Michael Wilford
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Please understand, I am NOT bagging on the Army here, I am simply asking a question based on my own observations. I served two tours on two different Army posts and witnessed first hand how lower enlisted soldiers (PV1 through SPC) interacted with soldiers of higher rank (CPL through SSG) and I found their lack of respect and lack of discipline to be a bit disturbing. So, my deeper question is this; is this perceived problem of discipline due to the size of the Army as compared to the Marine Corps where we do not have this type of discipline issue, is it due to smaller unit cohesion, or is it something else? I am writing a white paper on military discipline and any information will be helpful. Remember, at the end of the day, we are one military with different missions toward the same end goal, so please do not use this thread as a means to bash other branches of service. I have not done that to the Army; I have great respect for the Army and for its mission and I am simply looking for others' observations about discipline.
Posted in these groups: Discipline1 DisciplineEnlisted_logo EnlistedUcmj UCMJ
Edited 8 mo ago
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1SG John Furr
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The Army has seen a degradation in discipline for some time now, unfortunately it's not limited to lower enlisted. I had E-7's who lacked discipline as well... The problem is the Army has catered to generational changes, instead of making them come up to our standards. I literally had an E4 tell me that just because I was a 1SG, that didn't make me better than him... The Marine Corps is much more disciplined as a branch-- throughout all career fields; that's something I've always respected about the USMC, and a large reason as to why they can do more with less resources.
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SFC Intelligence Senior Sergeant/Chief Intelligence Sergeant
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PV2 (Join to see) - Question why do you refer to you unit as the 13cn co 2nd cm bn rather than the correct way 13 CM Co. 2D CM Bn. (CBRN) of the 48th CM B. ?
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PV2 Chemical Biological Radiological and Nuclear Operations Specialist
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==
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SFC Intelligence Senior Sergeant/Chief Intelligence Sergeant
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PV2 (Join to see) - One kid I called the Red Dragons the Red Dogs. What this tells me is you are most likely a Lying sack of Shit. Your suppose rank Of Pvt2 upon getting out after 4 years also tells me all I need to know since promotions to E-4 are automatic. Bye kid. I hated my time in C Co. 313th MI (CEWI) Bn. of the 82nd ABN Div. Yet I still use the correct format when writing of it. Great people in a rather lousy place.
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PV2 Chemical Biological Radiological and Nuclear Operations Specialist
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lol
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SGT Elizabeth S.
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To start off, I don't see this as bashing the Army at all, mostly because it's the truth. For a long time before my discharge I saw such a lack of respect and discipline it made me sick to my stomach. In one instance I witnessed a spc tell a 1LT to shut up. I also saw how little soldiers (lower enlisted as well as sr enlisted) care about physical training. During my last two years in my unit I was very involved in physical training and running the unit through pt (at the time I had been working on my associate's degree in criminal justice, and it was structured like ba law enforcement academy) so I was constantly getting pt in but also trying to convey to the other soldiers how crucial being in the best condition possible is for anyone in the military. It was also frustrating to see the lack of respect that soldiers had in public, because not only were they representing their unit, the army, but also the military in its entirety, in my opinion. I think part of the reason why soldiers are getting away with it is because the standards seem like they might be lowering so as to accommodate for a new generation of soldiers, which is so wrong. I also think that part of it is that the younger generation that has gone into the army, feels like they are "entitled" because they decided to go into the military. Idk, maybe I'm just too old school, but I think the standards to be raised and current soldiers need to learn how to have some respect and discipline, and make show the civilians the meaning of being a soldier.
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SPC Medical Specialist
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3 mo
SFC James Lahtonen - What I don't get is how you go from Officer to Enlisted. Usually it's the other way unless busted down in rank, but even that is puzzling. It must be this new and "improved" Army. I never heard of tokens for Time Outs in BCT. I'd hate to be a drill sergeant.
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SPC Medical Specialist
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3 mo
You are so right, SGT Elizabeth Scheck. I agree with everything you said.
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SGM William Heath
SGM William Heath
1 mo
Well I can tell you this letting them pull a card cause they ate stressed discipline when they don't work as a team. And also letting them be mouthy at basic and Ait. It starts at basic!. Its funny all these good leaders a ssf their forgetting to lead. And I will make this clear- there may be higher ranks which respect has been earned. But don't forget every soldier has given uncle Sam a blank check for their life. We'r ate brothers, sisters, and is up fo us to make it what it is. Sometimes you just need a code red, or a motivational seminar...


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PV2 Chemical Biological Radiological and Nuclear Operations Specialist
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That 1LT was probably a piece of shit who talks too much and wastes everyones time. No one respects RANK anymore, they respect LEADERS. So if you have discipline issues with lower enlisted personnel it's probably because you're a shitty ass leader who has not gained the respect of their subordinates. People are different nowadays. No one cares if you're a fucking 1LT or a CSM if you're a shitty person, and in my experience the vast majority of senior NCOs that were in my unit were incapable of leading by example, even our 1sg. The issue isn't with lower enlisted. The issue is that the ranking system of the military demands that everyone becomes a leader, or they get stuck at SPC. This has created a situation where clueless people like you, SGT Elizabeth, lead by the principal of "I am a sergeant, therefore lower enlisted must respect me. I don't have to do anything to earn their respect because I am a sergeant." As soon as leaders break free of this mentality, the lack of discipline will cease. Be a leader. Not an entitled brat.
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SFC Career Counselor
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It's more what part of the Army you're in. The Army is really more like several Armies under one banner. I've been in units where a PFC stands at parade rest for a SPC, and while in that unit witnessed another unit where a PFC showed up for a detail without a blouse or hat, and his NCO had to practically beg him to go get his stuff.

Why does this happen and why is the USMC different? Well the USMC is a brand. There's one single brand. The Army is a bunch of brands. The pride of a paratrooper is to the 82nd, or the 173rd, whatever unit they're from, not "The Army". So, units that have a long history of pride and service, tend to have a higher level of discipline.
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SGT Russell Chewning
SGT Russell Chewning
6 mo
The USMC is different because they are more effective at indoctrination. I have been in multi-service bases, and the Marines would obsess over the most idiotic minutiae. Plus, it tends to attract enlistees with an overabundance of testosterone, from what I have seen. The type of folks that tend to just bulldoze forward, even BEFORE the Marines got a hold of them.

And frankly, as the SFC above illustrates... It takes a "special sort" to be HAPPY with the complete and utter lack of freedom of expression in the Marines. Not hating on them, but some personalities are pretty much guaranteed to be unhappy, unless their individuality is indoctrinated out of them. Nooooooooooo, thank you.
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SP5 Michael Barczykowski
SP5 Michael Barczykowski
4 mo
You also have to realize that the Airborne units are 100% voluntary. For the most part they are made up of people, men and women, with a higher level of commitment and pride. Just like the USMC and any other special ops unit, they are one step above.
JMHO, 173rd, RVN 69/70.
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SPC Medical Specialist
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3 mo
I don't see anybody getting away with these childish games in the USMC. They have a reputation and tradition to uphold and would probably throw these assholes out before they sign on the dotted line. The Army obviously needs a better screening process, but during times of war they are desperate for bodies.
I'll never forget what one drill sergeant told us in BCT: "You are expendable and can be replaced." I think some of the young dummies I trained with didn't even know what that meant.
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SPC W. Neil Cantor
SPC W. Neil Cantor
2 mo
I served in the early 70s and we had discipline! All except those we had to guard duty were Section 8s. The Army now is not the Army I learned so much from long ago! Something needs to be done quickly before we are overrun by you know who!
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