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CAP Talk  |  General Discussion  |  Uniforms & Awards  |  Topic: CAP Uniform outside of CAP
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ghost22
Recruit

Posts: 6
Unit: NER-NJ-002

« on: April 25, 2018, 06:14:23 PM »

Are we allowed to wear our CAP uniform outside of CAP?  I have a school event and my school is all about honoring the fallen and the veterans, and they want me to wear my uniform.
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Holding Pattern
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,278
Unit: Worry

« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2018, 06:15:32 PM »

This is at the discretion of the squadron commander if memory serves
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Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 29,091

« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2018, 06:21:45 PM »

Correct - Unit CC must approve.
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Holding Pattern
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Posts: 1,278
Unit: Worry

« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2018, 06:43:43 PM »

Found it in CAPM 39-1:

1.2.4.3. CAP members attending a military or civilian event representing CAP must
determine whether wear of the uniform is appropriate, must obtain their commanderís permission to
attend the event in uniform, and must wear the uniform most appropriate to the situation based on
formality and the commanderís direction. Members will make every effort to comply with local
installation uniform policy, or ask the CAP-Liaison Region, the CAP Wing Coordinator, or the
installationís public affairs office for guidance.
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TheSkyHornet
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,471

« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2018, 08:20:50 PM »

To add---

Don't just focus on whether or not you are allowed to wear the uniform. Consider the intent and the image you are representing.

If you are wearing a uniform to school for the sake of wearing it to school to commemorate military veterans, that has little intent for CAP. If you are posting the National Colors as part of an color guard at a ceremony, that's a whole different scenario and has a valid intent behind it.

You have to think about how you will 'sell' the permission to your Commander and whether or not he/she thinks you wearing your uniform to an outside activity is worth the CAP name he puts on that approval when you are out in public away from the home unit.
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kwe1009
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 915

« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2018, 09:36:28 PM »

Found it in CAPM 39-1:

1.2.4.3. CAP members attending a military or civilian event representing CAP must
determine whether wear of the uniform is appropriate, must obtain their commanderís permission to
attend the event in uniform, and must wear the uniform most appropriate to the situation based on
formality and the commanderís direction. Members will make every effort to comply with local
installation uniform policy, or ask the CAP-Liaison Region, the CAP Wing Coordinator, or the
installationís public affairs office for guidance.

The highlighted part above is the part that most people miss.  Being at an event "representing CAP" is not the decision of the individual, it is up to the chain of command to say who, if anyone, will attend an event at a representative of CAP.  If you are just attending an event then you shouldn't wear the uniform.

CAP is not the military and wearing your uniform at an event to honor the military or veterans really is not a good idea.  It may make it look like you are trying to "cash in" on any of the accolades going around.  Keep the CAP uniform for CAP events where it belongs.
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TheSkyHornet
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,471

« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2018, 09:49:48 AM »

Found it in CAPM 39-1:

1.2.4.3. CAP members attending a military or civilian event representing CAP must
determine whether wear of the uniform is appropriate, must obtain their commanderís permission to
attend the event in uniform, and must wear the uniform most appropriate to the situation based on
formality and the commanderís direction. Members will make every effort to comply with local
installation uniform policy, or ask the CAP-Liaison Region, the CAP Wing Coordinator, or the
installationís public affairs office for guidance.

The highlighted part above is the part that most people miss.  Being at an event "representing CAP" is not the decision of the individual, it is up to the chain of command to say who, if anyone, will attend an event at a representative of CAP.  If you are just attending an event then you shouldn't wear the uniform.

CAP is not the military and wearing your uniform at an event to honor the military or veterans really is not a good idea.  It may make it look like you are trying to "cash in" on any of the accolades going around.  Keep the CAP uniform for CAP events where it belongs.

I had a CSM ask the other day if it was okay for his son to wear his uniform to a Memorial Day ceremony at the local VFW. Our Commander said it was fine as he is part of the ceremony (Flag raising or something), but if they plan to attend the parade after, he would like him to change into civilian attire.

That same day, another parent, who is the commander at the local VFW (the same location as above), overheard and said she planned to have her daughter wear her uniform on the VFW float in the parade. We reiterated that we would prefer that she not wear her uniform on a float representing military personnel, as we are not military. Marching in the parade in a CAP group would be one thing; standing alongside the veterans in ABUs is another. Mom flipped.

It is what it is. She'll live.

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Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 29,091

« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2018, 11:21:33 AM »

I would say these misguided situations are attempts at "reflected valor" (vs. stolen).

People reaching for an affinity with something they are only tangentially connected to.

And the fact that a hosting org asks you to do it doesn't necessarily make it right, that's
why CC's are supposed to consider the propriety and approve, etc.

The above have it right, if you're there representing CAP, then a uniform is probably fine.
If you're there for the affinity, probably isn't.

(And I post the above with full knowledge that I wore service dress to my uncles funeral at
a military cemetery, so there you go).

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chuckmilam
Forum Regular

Posts: 123
Unit: GLR-KY-216

« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2018, 11:23:02 AM »

....mom flipped.
Flipped:  Changed her mind?
-or-
Flipped out:  Lost her mind? 
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TheSkyHornet
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,471

« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2018, 11:57:48 AM »

....mom flipped.
Flipped:  Changed her mind?
-or-
Flipped out:  Lost her mind?

Not a happy camper. Borderline what I would call "outraged" or "disgusted"
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Luis R. Ramos
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 2,682

« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2018, 01:34:35 PM »

Wow.

How views have changed.

Ten years ago, I have twenty in, we said "CAP represents the United States Air Force, specially in states where there is no Air Force." We say in New York City "participate in the New York City Veterans Parade" in November for them.

I also hear today "wear the uniform properly as it is how the military wears it, and we represent the military."

Now I hear "don't attend if it is for the military!"

If you guys are going to hold the view "do not participate in a parade for the military" then you are negating the concept of "we represent the military" when we are in uniform.



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TheSkyHornet
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,471

« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2018, 02:18:03 PM »

I think the distinction is whether you are at a CAP activity involved in that event versus going about town on your own as the lone CAP person present.

CAP represents the military in uniform perception only---many of the 'civilian' population don't know the difference when they see a CAP uniform versus any other military branch. They see 'military.' So through appearance alone, you are representative of the military.

At no time would it ever be considered appropriate for a CAP member to stand out on their own and go "I represent the military, therefore I am going to (event) to represent the military." And I think that's rarely the case, at least in my own experience; I've never seen it.

Being in CAP doesn't make one a military veteran. If the Boy Scouts or a high school marching band march in a Memorial Day or 4th of July parade, then it doesn't seem to far off to have a CAP unit march in the same parade. To have a CAP member, on their own, fall in ranks with a group of active or veteran military personnel in that parade seems a bit odd. That's just me; I'm obviously not the beholder of the authority on CAPM 39-1.

And nobody said anything about "don't attend." All I'm hearing is "don't wear the uniform if... (circumstance)."

If anyone in CAP is in the belief that they should wear their CAP uniform to any public event because it represents the military---not CAP---then they're lacking that integrity to recognize that they are not military; they are a civilian component of a military organization under a distinctive civilian charter with its own bylaws and regulations.
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Luis R. Ramos
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 2,682

« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2018, 02:27:21 PM »

I think the distinction is whether you are at a CAP activity involved in that event versus going about town on your own as the lone CAP person present.

In that context I agree.

CAP represents the military in uniform perception only---many of the 'civilian' population don't know the difference when they see a CAP uniform versus any other military branch. They see 'military.' So through appearance alone, you are representative of the military.

At no time would it ever be considered appropriate for a CAP member to stand out on their own and go "I represent the military, therefore I am going to (event) to represent the military..."

Agreed.
 
Being in CAP doesn't make one a military veteran. If the Boy Scouts or a high school marching band march in a Memorial Day or 4th of July parade, then it doesn't seem to far off to have a CAP unit march in the same parade. To have a CAP member, on their own, fall in ranks with a group of active or veteran military personnel in that parade seems a bit odd. That's just me; I'm obviously not the beholder of the authority on CAPM 39-1.

And nobody said anything about "don't attend." All I'm hearing is "don't wear the uniform if... (circumstance)."

I posted it in the context of "don't attend in uniform."



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CAPLTC
Forum Regular

Posts: 151
Unit: MER

« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2018, 11:36:46 PM »

Marching in the parade in a CAP group would be one thing; standing alongside the veterans in ABUs is another. Mom flipped.

Why is that even an issue? There is absolutely no stolen valor in any of this.
CAP Cadets should be able to mix it up with some VFW types on a float.
If you can't tell a CAP cadet from a VFW member, that is on you. Uniform clearly says CAP, all over it.
People need to get over themselves.
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Cliff_Chambliss
Seasoned Member

Posts: 409

« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2018, 08:56:39 AM »

Many years ago (1960's)  as a cadet Birmingham, Alabama had three composite squadrons.  Every year on 11 November, the cadets from all three squadrons would take part and march in the Annual Veteran's Day Parade.  Not as part of an ROTC Formation, not as part of a VFW Float, but as an organization in its own right.
Also, every year there was a Cerebral Palsy Telethon at the civic center and CAP along with other civic organizations were invited to have information booths/tables.  Again, members of all three squadrons came together to man the booth for the 24-36 hours of the telethon.    Haven't seen much of this in recent years.
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kwe1009
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 915

« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2018, 11:57:10 AM »

Marching in the parade in a CAP group would be one thing; standing alongside the veterans in ABUs is another. Mom flipped.

Why is that even an issue? There is absolutely no stolen valor in any of this.
CAP Cadets should be able to mix it up with some VFW types on a float.
If you can't tell a CAP cadet from a VFW member, that is on you. Uniform clearly says CAP, all over it.
People need to get over themselves.

The uniform may clearly say "Civil Air Patrol" but that doesn't mean people notice it or even understand what that means.  I have been in the Air Force for over 30 years and I have lost count of how many times people thought I was in the Army when I was wearing BDUs near an Air Force base and no Army base in sight.

In my opinion there is no reason for individual CAP members to wear their uniform at any event honoring the military.  CAP is not part of the military period.  I definitely don't agree with the often stated, "I am wearing my CAP uniform to honor the military."  How exactly is wearing a CAP uniform honoring anyone outside of the wearer and CAP?

I wonder how many people would be asking to wear their uniforms all the time if they did not look like Air Force uniforms.
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CAPLTC
Forum Regular

Posts: 151
Unit: MER

« Reply #16 on: May 06, 2018, 08:30:04 PM »

Quote from: kwe1009
People need to get over themselves.

All of us here included. :)
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"Find the enemy that wants to end this experiment (in American democracy) and kill every one of them until theyíre so sick of the killing that they leave us and our freedoms intact." -- SECDEF Mattis
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