Posted by Steven Hayward
It’s really good.
Hat tip: Glenn Reynolds/Instapundit
An interesting aside...I was listening to a show on the Catholic Channel on Sirius the other day about how to attract people to religious life. They came to the conclusion that the Marines have it right. You don't want to attract those who think it will be easy, or those who don't want to live a life of sacrifice and honor. There probably are few who can make these commitments, and we should admire them.
Terrific piece of ad work there. The Marines' way of crafting the message is something conservatives ought to take note of -- there's a kind of simplicity to the delivery, but the message itself is subtle, complex and appeals to the heart. MichiganReader put his finger on it well.
Some time back I watched a documentary that chronicled one recruit class through thirteen weeks of basic training. They showed the kids coming in, all brash and full of themselves. Then, across the span of three months they showed the drill instructors creating in the recruits something few ever had before -- a sense of hard word, accomplishment, dedication to a cause, and the deeply satisfying notion of honor and integrity. At graduation they presented the recruits with their insignia, and the drill instructions calling them "Marine."
Tears streamed down the faces of these recruits. They had become men. They would never be the same. They knew that, and they were grateful. It was a wonderfully moving thing to see.
Being present at the graduation ceremony of my son at Parris Island was one of the most moving events ever. Yes, he and his fellow Marines had become men. My son had gone through the final weeks of basic training, including Hell Week, while he had pneumonia. He would not quit, which meant that even the first weeks of basic had been transformational. I didn't know how sick he was until after the ceremony. That was NOT my boy, but the someone else he had become.
That is a beautiful ad for the Marines. The human reality my son encountered in the Corps was not always so grand. The disillusionment that was bluntly evident after some time in the Corps, his and his friends', was a later and painful transformation. Men are still men even when polished up a bit. Most complain about the organization more than about the jobs they did. Still, a sense of hard work, accomplishment, dedication to a cause, and the deeply satisfying notion of honor and integrity, those things still linger. My son, his friends and the veterans in my classes are the kind of men I am very glad to have around.
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