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Renewing our commitment to the Profession of Arms

  • Published
  • By Chief Master Sgt. David Brinkley
  • 451st Air Expeditionary Wing Command Chief
General Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has four focus areas. One of these is "To renew our commitment to the Profession of Arms".

Every profession has an oath which is a solemn promise that a person makes to signify that he or she is bound in conscience to perform a particular act truthfully and faithfully. There is an oath for teachers, medical professionals, law enforcement officers, lawyers, realtors and many, many others.

As members of the Profession of Arms we too have raised our hands and pledged an oath. This oath of enlistment or oath of office is like no other. These words are more than a requirement to extend our military service. They are words signifying our commitment to the citizens of the United States of America that we will execute our duties to the best of our abilities, truthfully and faithfully, everyday in order to defend our freedoms against all enemies, foreign or domestic.

Many have died in the defense of these freedoms and as long as we have enemies who try to take away these freedoms more will make that ultimate sacrifice. That is what makes our Profession of Arms the most unique profession in the world. With the exception of a few professions such as law enforcement, no other profession asks its members to lay down their lives so others may live in freedom.

When you took your oath of enlistment or oath of office did you recite the words as a prerequisite to continue in a job or did you consider your total, all-encompassing commitment to the Profession of Arms. A commitment in which less than 1 percent of Americans ever answer.

Some citizens may not truly comprehend nor appreciate what our oath asks from us; but, that is okay because we serve not for recognition or acknowledgement from the citizens we protect but because of love of country and love of our freedoms. We are members of a fraternal organization serving not ourselves but nearly 314 million Americans.

Renewing our commitment to the Profession of Arms cannot be totally accomplished through programming, but will require an individual commitment. Each of us must reach inside and evaluate ourselves and fully understand and appreciate why we serve and who we serve.