Why I wear the uniform
MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan -- You can tell a lot about a person by looking at just their shoes. Some people wear the newest style or limited edition. Others just simply wear what they can afford or manage to get by with.
My shoes are green, with heavy grease and oil stains, but not from carelessness or not paying attention to detail -- actually, quite the opposite. It's from my passion of working on the F-16 Fighting Falcon, from being more focused on my job of putting warheads on foreheads.
These boots I wear are not as limited edition as my enemy may hope they are. Many Airmen like me wear them on a daily basis, believing in the same cause as I do. Some boots may be more soiled, torn and worn down than others.
I can't speak for each Airman on their reason for tying their boot laces each morning and tucking them in before leaving the dorms, home, or tents in a faraway, distant place they never imagined they'd be. They all have their own reasons, beliefs and opinions. I do the double loop and pull every morning because I made an oath to my country and gave my word to perform my job to the best of my ability, while following the orders of those appointed over me.
Why I took the oath doesn't matter. I could say all these things like I needed a job, had to get out of a bad city or I have no family. Either way I swore it and gave my word, and a wise man once told me, "A man is only as good as his word. If his word means nothing, then so does that man."
That is why I wear my green boots, to keep my word as a man and Airman.