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Thread: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

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    Default Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Curfews. Buddy policies. Alcohol restrictions. More training.

    Sailors say their liberty time is suffering due to the actions of a handful of no-good, misbehaving shipmates.

    Vice Adm.. Scott Swift, head of 7th Fleet, is empowering sailors to “remain vigilant” and correct those who step out of line. He’s also asking junior enlisted what ideas they have for cutting out “unacceptable personal behavior.”

    While the Navy looks for new ways ahead, 7th Fleet sailors in Japan continue to experience curfew restrictions.

    We want your feedback. What’s life been like under the ever-changing liberty rules? How is morale? Is punishment-for-all a fair way to correct the actions of a few? How would you deal with the problem, or is it even a problem?

    Is the media putting an unfair focus on Japan? Are the locals too sensitive?

    Sound off below, or email your comments to staff writer Jacqueline Klimas at jklimas@militarytimes.com. Your comments could be used in an upcoming story.

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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    In my opinion, it sends a clearer message to come down hard on the offender. "Can you believe what happened to Jim, I'm never doing that" is better than "Jim got drunk and beat up a club owner, now we all have to stay on base". Collective punishment seems like something handed down from colonial times when your peers could take care of you when you stepped out of line, lest they all be punished.

    Making everyone wear diapers because one person peed their pants is a lazy way to correct behavior. It obviously doesn't work since the same offenses are committed over and over and over.

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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    One crew, one screw! Kinda puts pressure into more intrusive leadership and also shipmates keeping each other in check. It's often one those cases where one gets in trouble and turns out his liberty buddy left him hanging somewhere because they didn't feel like ruining their own night babysitting him and he was being too much of a drunk a-hole to return to the ship.

    I'm not a proponent of collective punishment, but the CO has to do something when his crew pushes up the averages with liberty incidents....especially when chopped in a different fleet. For every one you NJP/CM or put on liberty risk, two or three more of these idiots pop up and ruin it for the other 99 percent of the crew.

    Fan room counselings used to work wonders.....
    Last edited by Navy Mustang; 07-24-2013 at 10:39 AM.

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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Seems kinda dumb to me but I get it. The IDEA I get-peer pressure is a mother.. However, is it really justice? Like the various zero tolerence this and zero tolerence that, it is simply a cop-out so leadership doesn't have to actually make any tough decisions.
    “I say, imagine in your private life, if you decided that I’m not going to pay my mortgage for a month or two—first of all you’re not saving money by not paying your mortgage. You’re just a dead beat. “

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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Is punishment-for-all a fair way to correct the actions of a few?
    -Is it fair? No. Is it the easiest way to initiate immediate corrective action? Yes. At the same time, we are shipmates, teammates who all share in the mission and like it or not part of the mission of the Navy is forward presence in foreign countries. I was part of the Enterprise CSG that deployed in 2011 (immediately following CAPT Honors relief for the videos made when he was the XO). I was very disappointed that rather than using this to teach people what is and isn’t appropriate the reaction was to prohibit any video, filming etc. that was not approved by the PAO – the message wasn’t to cut out inappropriate behavior, just don’t tape it.

    How would you deal with the problem, or is it even a problem?
    There are some problems. The best way to deal with this is involvement of the immediate leadership. If you have a problem Sailor, the LCPO should ID who they are and talk to them, not email, not sign a liberty policy … but sit down and have a no-kidding conversation with their Sailor. If there is a JO who is a problem the Dept Head and XO need to do some mentoring.

    Are the locals too sensitive?
    Not at all, it is THEIR country and we are their guests. How would we feel if a foreign ship pulled into San Diego, Norfolk or New York and their Sailors were assaulting the locals, using streets as public toilets or any other kind of shenanigans?

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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Quote Originally Posted by 71Fish View Post
    In my opinion, it sends a clearer message to come down hard on the offender. "Can you believe what happened to Jim, I'm never doing that" is better than "Jim got drunk and beat up a club owner, now we all have to stay on base". Collective punishment seems like something handed down from colonial times when your peers could take care of you when you stepped out of line, lest they all be punished.

    Making everyone wear diapers because one person peed their pants is a lazy way to correct behavior. It obviously doesn't work since the same offenses are committed over and over and over.
    Plus we are always being told to act like adults and be responsible, but when our chain of commands treat us like we are all still teens, there gets to be a disconnect between how we want to act and how we are regarded.

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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Collective punishment never was, and never will be, the right way to handle anything. Personal responsibility and accountability is the key. Those that do follow the rules and act the right way should not be subject to disciplinary measures. That maintains the incentive to do the right thing even when no one is watching.
    When things go wrong in your command, start searching for the reason in increasingly larger concentric circles around your own desk.
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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Its even worse for Army in Japan because we are placed on the same restrictions as the other services when it wasn't even one of our own committing the actions!

    If a marine gets drunk and gets a DUI, everyone on island gets a DUI. If an airman talks on his phone while driving and gets a ticket, we all get a ticket. Thats the attitude we get from the command here. I guess we are expected to not only police up our battle-buddies but also our "wingmen", "shipmates" and fellow "Devil-Dogs".

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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Too true. Had a marine just after our ship pulled into Sasebo for a sub repair, who got a DUI (iirc at osaka), and OUR ship along with the others had to do a DUI standdown day.

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    Default Re: Tell us: Is collective punishment the right way to handle liberty problems?

    Group punishment worked well in boot camp, where you lived and worked with the same (relatively) small group of people, and peer pressure to straighten up and fly right could correct some deficiencies, thus preventing a malcontent from being rolled back (out of the company). It helped build comraderie and taught team work.....to a bunch of mostly 18 and 19 year old kids.

    But once you're out of that environment, it has limited effectiveness. You start punishing everyone, for any one person's infraction, too often, and you're only going to get back resistance to this lazy form of "leadership". If you're part of the 99% that's keeping their nose clean, but repeatedly being punished by having to put up with extra nanny rules on yourself and your shipmates, you're going to start resenting it. It's bad enough having the double standard between officer and enlisted (and it's there, no matter how much some officers would like to claim it doesn't exist), but if you further degrade the attitudes of your people by treating them like school age children, don't expect to have high morale in your crew.

    Crack down, HARD, on the trouble makers, and treat the remainder of your crew with respect, and you'll get a lot further.

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