Former Marine

Discussion in 'Military' started by Huh?, Nov 30, 2009.

  1. Huh?
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    Huh? leave this space blank

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    This is an honest inquiry!

    I got into a discussion on another board with a member there because I was curious about his sig which reads "Former Marine".

    To me, that would indicate that he is no longer a Marine and I always got the impression that once someone became a Marine...they were always a Marine...kind of on a special level if that makes any sense...which would make being a "Former Marine" a misnomer...unless, of course, someone were dishonorably discharged.

    Seriously...I'm trying to get a feeling on this because, for instance, my ex brother-in-law...who was a Marine during Nam certainly prides himself on being a Marine to this day and I'm sure in no way looks upon himself as being a "Former Marine" even though he is no longer on active duty which was the explanation I got from this other individual.

    He said he uses "Former Marine" so as to make it clear he is no longer on active duty...which still seems to me to be inaccurate...he is not a former Marine...he is still a Marine by my way of understanding...when I pushed him further to try and discuss this logic he quit responding to me.

    I would appreciate some perspective on this from other members of the military, thanks.
     
  2. California Girl
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    California Girl BANNED

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    There are no ex-Marines. That is the view of Marines. A 'former' Marine is someone who no longer service in the USMC but, at heart, they are all still Marines. Nothing complicated about it - it's a mindset.


    Semper Fi and Ooorah to USMC!
     
  3. noose4
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    noose4 Senior Member

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    Saying that you are a former Marine is generally seen as okay, it is ex Marine that usually bothers those who have served in the Marine Corps.
     
  4. Toome
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    Toome Active Member

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    "Former" and "ex" are just inside jokes that reflect a unique pride among warriors. Don't believe for a second that a Soldier, Marine or Sailor would have any shame, embarrassment or discomfort about having served or making the distinction between someone who has served and someone who is currently serving.
     
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  5. Huh?
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    I thank you all for the responses...I understand the mindset as you've explained it CG...that's the same thing said by the other guy...I'm just getting warped in the semantics looking at "former" in a context as "previously was a" or "was at one time"...I can simply accept it as a unique usage among a group that I am not a member of and respect that definition for them...I just don't have it computing in my mind as yet on a logical semantic level beyond that.

    Noose4, your point is crystal clear to me as I mentioned before...to me "ex" would only fit someone dishonorably discharged and if my guess is correct I doubt any self respecting Marine would have a problem with such a person no longer being considered worthy of the title.

    Toome, being an inside joke would make sense and wouldn't necessarily dictate a need for accuracy rhetorically...I've no problem with that...in no way did I get the impression that the Marine in question had anything but pride for his service and that of others...according to him the term merely signified he was no longer on active duty.

    Thanks again to all of you for sharing your insight.
     
  6. smithfix
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    smithfix smithfix

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    John Mertha would be an "Ex Marine". Others who hold to their Oath are still Marines.
     
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    Last edited: Dec 6, 2009
  7. Big Black Dog
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    Big Black Dog Gold Member Supporting Member

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    Being a retired Navy Chief Hospital Corpsman, and having spent a bit of time with the Marines, there is no such thing as a "former Marine". Once a Marine, always a Marine. At least that is the way all of the Marines I have ever met seem to feel. It's one of those honor and pride things which is often made fun of by us Navy types but is held near and dear to the members of the Marine Corps. When the feces hits the fan, and if you have to be involved with the fight, it's always a good thing to surround yourself with Marines. Just sit back and eat some popcorn and watch those guys take care of business... Semper Fi - the Marine Corps most famous saying actually is the Latin phrase which translated means, "Who's my father?":lol: The Marines take a lot of kidding from the Navy guys but they are really a great bunch of guys dedicated to service to our country.
     
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  8. noose4
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    noose4 Senior Member

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    John Murtha served honorably

    John P. Murtha - SourceWatch

     
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  9. Huh?
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    Huh? leave this space blank

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    The part in bold echo's my experience which is why I had brought it up in the first place.
     
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  10. Gunny
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    Gunny Gold Member

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    No such fucking animal unless you're Lee Harvey Oswald or Charles Whitman. Once a Marine .. ALWAYS a Marine. Unless you dishonor the title.
     
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