The recent policy of allowing US Marines stationed overseas a sleeves up uniform leniency was applauded enthusiastically everywhere. The brave fighting forces of the United States can now reveal their forearms whenever they like.
Up until now Marines regulations banned any sleeves up behavior from the armed forces while on duty. This of course was a source of extreme chagrin for the seagoing specialists. They had been proud of the tradition of rolling up their sleeves and showing off their forearms and muscles with the tattoos emblazoned on them.
But now the Commandant General James Amos has revoked the rule he instituted a while back. He seems to have heard all the complaints loud and clear. Already there had been some level of frustration over the rule regarding not putting hands in pockets in a casual manner. Now with this rule it appeared that the very traditions of the Marines were being spurned. So they rebelled in a big way.
The leathernecks did have a point. Rolling up their sleeves was the one thing that differentiated them from the rest of the fighters America had. The troops filed complaints and signed petitions to put an end to the stupid rule.
Finally, they won their uniform battle. The Commandant spoke of how he had received questions regarding this bureaucratic rigmarole from his juniors for the umpteenth time. After what seemed to be a lot of discontent in the rank and file of the Marines, the Commandant decided enough was enough and lent them the right to bare their arms (no pun intended).
In a Facebook post on the Marines account, Commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. James Amos, said, "I can't tell you how many times we have been asked the persistent question, 'Commandant, are we ever going to return to SLEEVES UP?. I've thought a lot about this over the past 2.5 years; I realize that it's important to you. Sleeves up clearly and visually sets us apart. WE HEAR YOU MARINES!"
Every Marines unit broke out in jubilant cheers after the allowance to show off their muscles. In the upcoming summer months, when the heat will be at its peak, this casual laid-back behavior will come in handy. After General Amos lowered the discipline bar his Facebook home page was mobbed by so many likes and comments that he was positively overwhelmed.
"The roar of approval from across the Corps has been deafening," said Lt. Col. David Nevers, a Marines spokesman. "In the four years since we began using social media we haven't seen any post generate such an overwhelmingly positive reaction."
The Marines tradition of rolled sleeves has been followed haphazardly in the past with some ironing and starching their sleeves while others showed sloppy form. Despite the annulment of the law against sleeves up uniforms, the rest of the armed forces will not be allowed this special bending of the rules. It is a Marines-specific lacuna in the standard procedure.