Rules in the Military

Essay by pierce_d35University, Master'sA, December 2009

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I have been a member of the United States Army for the past 20 years. I am currently assigned to the United States Forces Command in Korea. During the last 20 years I have seen many changes occur, but I feel that one major issue that's becoming a problem is Soldier retention. I understand that because of our presence in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army has lowered standards not only to get new recruits but also to retain the Soldiers that they have. Everyday I see Soldiers that would have been discharged years ago for different violations are still retain in the Army and are now given second chances. Some of these infractions include poor performance, DUI's, weight control and failure to comply with rules and regulations. The moral issue for me is, how do I, as a Senior Non-Commissioned Officer justify keeping these below standard soldiers in the Army, receiving the same pay, benefits and privileges just like the Soldiers doing the right thing, all in an effort to keep the numbers up?Non-Commissioned Officers and Officers alike are responsible for ensuring that "good order and discipline" is maintained at all times.

We as leaders are charged with ensuring Soldiers are technically and tactically proficient in all areas and at all times. We are also charged with ensuring that they are well disciplined and we try and instill in them some sort of moral accountability for themselves. We are not only their supervisor, we are their mentor. There are times that we must be their Mother, Father, Chaplain and their legal advisor. The Army has come up with seven Army values that they believe each and every Soldier should live by. They are Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honesty, Integrity and Professionalism. I agree with most of the values that...