The words former Marine were used widely for decades until the 35th Commandant of the Marine Corps General Amos declared, “Once a Marine, always a Marine.”
This quote is widely referred to and was originally posted in the 2010 CMC Planning Guidance.
In it, General Amos states:
“A Marine is a Marine. I set that policy two weeks ago – there’s no such thing as a former Marine.
You’re a Marine, just in a different uniform and you’re in a different phase of your life. But you’ll always be a Marine because you went to Parris Island, San Diego or the hills of Quantico.
There’s no such thing as a former Marine.”
But do those words always ring true?
What about the dishonorably discharged Marines? Or those who’ve committed atrocious crimes? Should they be called Marines in the media?
Or do they deserve the title former Marine?
Weigh in with your thoughts.