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March 23, in ArmyPatriotism Permalink Col. Ripley, to whom this blog is dedicated, was the personification of the values expressed in this article.
Written by Lieutenant Colonel David G. Bolgiano, USAF, Retired Alexandre Havard writes in Virtuous Leadership on the importance and relevance of the cardinal virtues — prudence, fortitude or couragetemperance or self-control and justice — to both leaders and organizations.
Any person or group that lacks in one or more of these core character traits is doomed to failure. As William Penn, the founder and namesake of Pennsylvania, said: Governments, like clocks, go from the motion men give them; and as governments are made and moved by men, so by them they are ruined too … Let men be good and the government cannot be bad … But if men be bad, let the government be never so good, they will endeavor to warp and spoil it to their turn.
Likewise, our military depends on good people to lead and man it. Historically, it has consistently embraced the cardinal virtues to better ensure a spirit of selfless sacrifice and service amongst its members.
It is now under subtle attack by those that decry such beliefs as antiquated or even unconstitutional. Unfortunately, there are those trying to change that very culture by marginalizing the voices of virtue within our force.
If the Armed Forces of the United States is to remain a dominant player in geopolitics as well as a guardian of our populace, it must not proceed under the false belief that aspiring to live virtuously is somehow an antiquated and irrelevant modality for a postmodern world.
Such an objection is a canard that is predicated on ignorance of history and the law. Sadly, these voices have found traction of late within the Executive Branch. Hence, this virtue, like all the others, must be taught and learned. When a leader consistently makes wrong decisions — or makes rash decisions, right or wrong — then that individual is imprudent.
Due to the complexity of the modern battlefield, it is easy to err in this fashion.
Accordingly, competent leaders seek the counsel of others and quickly learn to delegate responsibility and authority to trusted subordinates. They also encourage freethinking amongst their staff. Those assigned to a dysfunctional staff, where the commander browbeats those who disagree, will instantly recognize this lack of virtue in their boss.
Sadly, courageous subordinates are often crushed; while sycophants, or those who simply remain silent, get promoted.
Prudence or competency is the result of practice. But, it also may require personal humility. It is possible that the commander is right and his staff wrong; but the opposite may be true, especially if the commander is consistently disagreeing with those whose demonstrated judgment is sound.
Absent a moral barometer, either derived from natural law or the Ten Commandments, there is no measure of right reason. Accordingly, bad commanders will simply bully others to get their way.
For he who believes in everything believes nothing and, consequently, lacks a compass by which to steer a true and straight course. Justice is more outwardly focused. It is that trait which seeks to give everyone his or her rightful due. While maintaining discipline in the Armed Forces is very important to the orderly conduct of military operations, and most people desire and expect malefactors to be brought to justice, the virtue of justice is much greater than the sum of what is set forth in those rules and procedures.
Good commanders utilize justice as a positive motivator on the path toward a humble and magnanimous career for themselves and their subordinates. Members of a successful military command are more concerned with respecting the rights of others and giving them proper credit where credit is due.
Damon is a professional warrior who puts duty, honor, and the men he commands above self-interest. He justly earns his promotions.
Once an Eagle should be mandatory reading for all officers and non-commissioned officers. Justice also requires an acknowledgement of and obeisance to the natural law or divinely-inspired law. Absent such a framework, we are left with simply the subordinate laws and whims of man.
We would be well served to remember that Adolf Hitler did nothing illegal under the laws of the Third Reich. Should legal rights ever come into conflict with natural rights, however, the latter take precedence. Hence, a warrior has both a right and an obligation to disobey clearly unlawful, unethical or unconstitutional orders.
Without an underlying concept of right or wrong — what is justice — how would a service member ever be able to discern this? John Ripley opposed the inclusion of females into units routinely expected to be engaged in close quarters combat CQB missions.
However, what is being discussed here is an overarching moral courage.The next time your daughter needs a little womanly scientific inspiration, try discussing these exceptional women, from history and present day. 10 Female scientist role models for your daughter.
Modern-Day Role Models. Through its Shero program, Barbie honors women who have broken boundaries in their fields and have been an inspiration to the next generation of . Modern-day superheroes promote a macho, violent stereotype for young boys, according to a US psychologist's study.
They differ greatly from superheroes of . Beyond Male Role Models is a research project exploring gender identities and practices in work with young men. The project is a partnership between The Open University (UK) and Action for.
When I saw this picture of Beverly Hills star AnnaLynne McCord and her sister, model, Angel on holiday I felt a mixture of emotions, shock, sadness and disappointment. Does this look equate to modern day beauty? Because to me, this is anything but beauty.
Honoring 14 modern-day role models – Through its Shero program, Barbie honors women who have broken boundaries in their fields and have been an inspiration to the next generation of girls with a.