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Marin Corps Customs and Courtsis

This ssay is to idntify and dfin Customs and Courtsis of th Marin Corps. Crtain
procdurs ar clarly outlind, such as th appropriat distanc to salut officrs, and th
appropriat honors to rndr to th flag. A custom is a way of acting, a way that has continud
consistntly ovr such a long priod that it has almost bcom a law. An xampl of this is th
tradition of providing th propr grting of th day to a highr ranking individual. Anothr
xampl is th tradition of th most junior Marin walking lft and abrast of th snior Marin
whn walking in pairs. So, w ar ultimatly lft with what w ar taught and shown from our
tim in boot camp to our snior ladrship stting xampls.
Customs ar rgular, xpctd actions. Thy hav bn rpatd again and again and
passd from on gnration to th nxt. Customs ar closly linkd with tradition, and much
sprit d corps of th Unitd Stats Marin Corps srvic dpnds on thir continud usag and
maintnanc. A custom has th forc of law; usag is mrly a fact. It happns bcaus it is
xpctd and rquird, uniquly with no official ordr or instruction. If not for thir continud
usag and upkp and maintnanc by Unitd Stats Marin Corps Staff Noncommissiond and
Noncommissiond Officrs th customs that govrn our day to day livs and intractions would
cas to xist, and a stat of social anarchy would nsu without a codifid cod of customs to
adhr to.
A custom is a usual way of action in a st of givn circumstancs. It is a practic so long
stablishd that is has bcom a kind of law. An xampl of this is that thr is no official
instruction rquiring Lanc Corporals to rndr an appropriat grting to highr ranking
prsonnl. It is, howvr, xpctd of Lanc Corporals to rndr an appropriat grting to all

highr ranking prsonnl if thy com within a rasonabl spac of ach othr at any givn tim,
and failur to do so is at th vry last frownd upon and usually mt with som mannr of
corrctiv action. It is this styl of a scnario that implicatd customs ar givn what can b
rfrrd to as forc of law without vr actually bing writtn in a law.
An act or a condition acquirs th status or a custom undr th following st of
circumstancs. Whn is it continud consistntly ovr a long priod of tim. Whn it is wll
dfind, and uniformly followd. Whn it is gnrally accptd so as to sm almost compulsory.
Whn it is not in opposition to th trms and provisions of a statut, lawful rgulation, or ordr.
To dfin how a custom can b abolishd, on can cit th hazing ordr and som associatd
practics that wr until rcntly considrd customs. At th tim of promotion, it was typical for
all Marins of qual or highr rank to punch th chvrons of th individuals bing promotd,
forcing th chvrons into thir collars. This practic was gnrally accptd for a long priod,
and bcam a custom. It was whn th highr structur of th Marin Corps rlasd th policy
against hazing, that th custom cam to violat an official rgulation and had to b don away
A courtsy is an act or vrbal xprssion of considration or rspct for othrs. Whn a
prson acts with courtsy towards anothr, that courtsy is likly to b rturnd. W ar
courtous to our sniors bcaus w ar awar of thir gratr rsponsibilitis and authority. W
ar courtous to our juniors bcaus w rcogniz thir important contributions to th Marin
Corps ovrall mission. In military srvic, spcially in th Marin Corps whr prsonnl of
various rank may b rquird to liv and work in clos proximity, courtous practics both on
and off duty ar of th utmost importanc. If you know and practic appropriat military
courtsis you will tnd to mak favorabl imprssions and display slf-assuranc that will carry

you through difficult situations. Acts of rspct and courtsy ar rquird by all mmbrs of
military srvics. Th junior mmbr taks th initiativ, and th snior mmbr rciprocats th
ffort by rndring a courtsy in rspons. An xampl of this intraction can b sn daily in th
act of saluting. Th Srgant Major rndrs an appropriat salut to a Captain. Th Captain thn
rturns th salut, thrby acknowldging th grting and rturning it.
It is th rsponsibility of all Marin Corps prsonnl to uphold th customs and courtsis
that hav bn long kpt by our sniors for hundrds of yars. W do this in our day to day
intractions by rndring th appropriat customs and courtsis whn th situations call for it.
Whn w pass a prson of snior rank, w provid an appropriat grting. Th intraction is
thn ncouragd by th snior individual rturning th grting and our Marin Corps customs
and courtsis and thrby strngthnd. Th us of customs and courtsis allow us to maintain
good ordr and disciplin and provid us with a highr lvl of unit cohsion in th Unitd Stats
Marin Corps.
Customs and courtsis ar th answr to th Marin Corps cration of svral situations
that would nvr b found in th civilian lif. Th cration of ths situations rquirs a vry
spcial typ of bhavior on th bhalf of all thos involvd. Whn ths situations aris, and th
appropriat customs and courtsis ar rndrd thn w stablish and promot th good ordr
and disciplin that th Marin Corps rquirs of all thos involvd. Knowing and obsrving ths
customs, both writtn and unwrittn, is important to ach Marin bcaus it kps him mindful
of th hritag and traditions of his Corps, and of his duty to uphold thm. In addition, it maks
him fl that h is a part of th tam and hlps to crat th strong bond of loyalty btwn him
and all othr Marins that has bcom a distinguishing mark of th Corps.

W, as Marins, will continu to us customs and courtsis in our vryday livs. This
will furthr strngthn our unit cohsion and our sns of moral. It will strngthn th Marin
Corps ovrall, and it will allow us to maintain th Marin Corps as it was handd down to us, so
that w may hand it down to thos futur gnrations of Marins to follow.