The nanny state of America is becoming absolutely fascinating if not terrifying. Sure, every nanny starts out feeling like Mary Poppins helping us guide our way through a troubling world of Nazis. But before long, it becomes that displeasing alternative future from Sylvester Stallone and Wesley Snipe’s Demolition Man movie where the spice of life has been reduced to non-fattening foods and hands off coitus. Well, personally I’d rather live with Dennis Leary in the sewers and eat a rat burger than have the entity of Government tell me what’s best. The picture you see above is an iconic photo from the 2nd battle of Fallujah. Marine James Miller was photographed by Luis Sinco of the Los Angeles Times as he took a break from the hardship of that battle with a cigarette. And if my research at the University of Wikipedia is correct, he was only 20 years old when that photo was taken. Anyone want to tell that Marine he can’t have that cigarette?
Smoke em if you got em!
Now, I don’t smoke. I do, however, enjoy the occasional cigar. Some of my best memories with my fellow Marines were enjoying a good cigar and conversation typically not fit for the rest of humanity. In fact, as a result of the picture you see below, the good people from CigarsCity.com sent me a few cigars to try out. They sent me a couple Monk American IPA and Black Ops Rubicon of which the Black Ops was my favorite. The smoke was great and the name is unmatched. Check them out, buy your stogie, and tell them Unprecedented Mediocrity sent you as I’m really thankful for the gift they sent even if my wife makes me shower after smoking a cigar before I get in bed at night.
But back to the issue at hand. Hawaii recently passed a law that goes into effect on January 1st 2016 that raises the age to use tobacco to 21. And if you are not aware, there is a good sized Marine base at Kaneohe Bay Hawaii full of grown men/Marines who are none too happy. The Marine Corps affirmed that it will enforce the law amongst its Hawaii Marines.
Now I don’t think the Marine Corps leadership is really behind this. I mean, look at the Commandant and Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps above. General Neller is a proven combat leader with over 40 years in the Marines and Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps Ronald Green looks like he is a plaid shirt away from Debo-ing your bicycle. These are hard men who know full well what a cigarette means to a young Marine and I think they would only take that away if they were ordered.
Marines Like Their Tobacco
Again, I don’t smoke, dip or chew, but don’t come between a Marine who does and his tobacco. I have watched Marines smoke right up until the last seconds before a 3-mile physical fitness test and then as soon as they cross the finish line, they light up again. When in the field, for every rifle there are two cans of Copenhagen to match it. When I was in Iraq, I watched Marines shed tears of joy when that package of fresh American smokes or a roll of dip showed up.
I don’t know if it is youth, stress, or the rigors of combat, but smoking and war are like peanut butter and jelly. Sure, just because Hawaii did it doesn’t men tobacco will be banned throughout the military. But this nanny state stuff tends to have a domino effect and banning tobacco use amongst the military has actually been a conversation that has gone on for some time in our current progressive reality.
The only thing that has stopped it was a universal outcry that a man who would give his life for his country, should be able to smoke if freaking feels like it. Granted, it could give you an excuse to turn down that one guy who is always bumming smokes, but if he is over 21 you are still screwed. The only thing this asinine rule has done, was to give those Hawaii Marines another stupid reason to get into trouble in garrison that ranks right up there with putting your hands in your pockets. We can only hope those charged with enforcing such a rule, turn a blind eye and let Marines do what Marines have been doing since the first time they smoked a pipe outside of Tun Tavern on November 10th, 1775. Semper Fi Marines and my sympathies to those in Hawaii.
If You Believe A Marine Should be Free To Smoke, Like the Unprecedented Mediocrity Facebook Page Below. It Won’t Actually Help the Hawaii Marines, but it Won’t Hurt Them Either Now Will It.