I just don't buy it.
Leadership seems hellbent on pushing the Air Force away from CAP.
The screwed up MAJCOM patch that appears on the new photo ID card is a perfect example of what Leadership is doing wrong. I'm not saying everything that is being done at Maxwell is crap, far from it...
This just happens to be where I disagree with Leadership down to the very marrow of my bones.
CA posted some intel from HQ that they may not fixing the CrAPtastic patch graphic on the ID card... and it just has me fired up.
Here's the way I see it...
After 9/11, the pendulum swung back away from CAP corporatizing, and we leaned in closer to big-brother-blue. We got rid of the CAP Corporate Seal on the Air Force Style flight suit and started wearing a more appropriate shield & scroll MAJCOM style patch, that says "U.S. AIR FORCE AUXILIARY" in the scroll. (see graphic at the top left corner of this blog)
Leadership has made it a habit of playing nice with the Air Force when they get their way, and exploiting work-arounds and loop-holes when it's convenient. It seems to me that whenever Leadership gets and idea, if they don't get their way when they ask the Air Force for it, they immediately set about circumventing the obstacle by whatever expedient route possible.
EXHIBIT A: Metal Grade on the shoulders of the "TPU" Corporate Uniform. It's obvious to me what happen here. Leadership wanted to have metal grade, like regular Air Force, on the uniform. First, Leadership started by asking the Air Force for permission to put metal rank on the AF style blues. The AF said, "NO."
So then Leadership authorized a VERY AIR FORCE LOOKING "Corporate" uniform combination, with blue shoulder marks. They used the lame justification that the AF does not control our corporate uniform, so we can do whatever we wan with THAT. End result, the "TPU."
Of course they got away with it for a little while, until the Air Force finally turned back and put the smack down on it.
So poof! The "TPU" underwent some suggested revisions.
EXHIBIT B: The CrAPtastic shield and scroll above. Which is a bastardization of the MAJCOM style patch. Why change "U.S. AIR FORCE AUXILIARY" to "Civil Air Patrol" on this graphic?
Because Leadership got pissed off at the Air Force and decided that they could get away with it, that's why!
Leadership takes all the borrowed interest from the Air Force it can, but then tweaks it to meet their own goals... Taking an Air Force heraldry symbol like the MAJCOM patch and twisting it. So you end up with something that looks sorta like Air Force stuff, but doesn't come with any of the restrictions which come with the package. OK. I get it.
The new ID is an evolution of what stated as a CAC-wannabe ... And since we're not smart enough to just let the Air Force handle our credentialing ... we end up with a silly looking card.
Note that some people still wear the CAC-like original design when they feel like it, instead of sticking to what we in the rank-and-file have to put up with. Sheesh!
So here's what we should do:
- Abandon the "TPU" - We want a corporate style uniform that is distinctive from the Air Force, then let's see what the airlines are wearing and go that route. (Gen. McPeak did it, but it makes a lot more sense for us!)
- Ditch the CrAPtastic MAJCOM Wannabe - The graphic on the ID should match the patch on my uniform. (The first person to tell me that we should just change the MAJCOM on the flight suit gets pointed at, and laughed at!)
- Have the Air Force handle our credentialing - We should get CAC cards like everyone else. (Which includes civilian contractors, etc.) They have the infrastructure, and would help our volunteer force be better integrated with the active and reserve components.
If I've gotten it all very wrong, feel free to put me straight in comments below.