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A Suitable Independence Day Message

I have been accused (probably righteously) of suffering what my Marine friends call a slight case of motardation. I accept this, and try not to get too worked up over things that (maybe) in the grand scheme aren't a huge issue. Those efforts are largely unsuccessful. It bothers me that some no doubt well-meaning real estate lady puts little American flags in every yard in my neighborhood each year on the morning of Independence Day. I don't blame her for wanting to get her business card out there (there is one hooked to every little flagpole) but I know that most of those little flags will still be out there next week, and a bunch of them will be on the ground. This is of course a sad commentary on the people who don't take care of the flags correctly, which just adds to my frustration.

It aggravates me that I receive e-mails and press releases from companies, ostensibly in the “tactical/military” industry, that wish me a “Happy 4th of July” along with a discount code. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the discount code, but is it so hard to say Happy Independence Day instead? We celebrate this date for a very serious reason. If you are a company whose intended market is comprised largely of patriotic, serving Americans (military, first responders, etc.) I think it would behoove you to get it right. You don't say, “Happy 11th of November!”, or “Merry 25th of December!”, and you damn sure don't say “Happy Final Monday of May!” I mention industry examples, but this tendency if representative of much of the general population as well.

I'm posting this message from Tom Davin, CEO of 5.11 Tactical, for two reasons. One, he gets it right and his well-crafted message soothes my motarded indignation. Second, I know he means it. With some companies, particularly the big ones, it would be easy to dismiss this as hyperbolic grandstanding. This is not. I know the man, not well, but enough to know he means it, as do the guys working with him (the ones I'm friends with, anyway). It's worth reading.

This isn't an advertorial. I'm not espousing any 5.11 products. I'm not promoting them over their competition and I'm certainly not passing judgment on all their competition — there are many good, patriotic companies out there. This is about a particular man, his timely message and his sincerity. Consider what he says here and keep it in the back of your mind while you celebrate Independence Day today.

Maybe we could all use a little motardation.

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