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 Post subject: *****Disbanding of the Color Guard****
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:14 am 
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Due to an overwhelming demand, the USCM Color Guard has been disbanded.

There were several reasons for this -

Among them were:

"Looks to much like an actual Military Unit"

"The Service C's have to go"

" There is a potential for a Stolen Valor complaint"

"Makes the Parade too slow"

"Makes the Parade too rigid"

And it seems, many just didn't like it.

I would like to thank all those who over the past several years, marched in the Color Guard. The History of the Color Guard. -From the first time Chris Chulamanis marched carrying the USCM Flag, it was then increased with the US Flag. Then the Flags of the UK, France, Japan, Canada and I think Australia were all represented.

It was however, very well received by the DragonCon Parade Organizers - they liked it so much, they asked us to Lead off the Parade.

Where does that leave the Colonial Marines in the Parade? Probably not at the Front of the Parade of course. It'll get put in with the rest of the Sci-Fi Groups.

But times change, and the majority did not want the Color Guard. So it has come to pass that the USCM Color Guard has passed into the annals of the Aliens Legacy History.

Again, My Sincere Thanks to Everyone who has Marched in the Color Guard's Past!

:delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta: :delta:

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:36 am 
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The complaint was from a few voices that were the loudest. Most marines I spoke to had no problem with it. But it's much better this way. The CG won't have AL holding it back and vice versa, so it's a win win. I was very honored to participate.

Thanks to everyone who have marched and supported CG. The AL is still the best group out there.

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 Post subject: Re: *****Disbanding of the Color Guard****
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:08 am 
Duke Bronson
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Yeah, it was alright.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 11:54 am 
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Last year there were multiple calls of thank you service from the crowd and at the end of the parade we were saluted by an amputee in a wheelchair This made me deeply uncomfortable and turned a fun experience in to a deeply unpleasant one, which i have no wish to ever repeat. there may have been a vocal minority but the drop off in the parade numbers should be taken into account.

This should be remembered we are a group of people playing dress up because we love a film. If all you care about is where you are in a parade you are doing it for the wrong reasons and if you are happy to be confused for real military and take that praise then you have a real problem.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:16 pm 
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Big Stew wrote:
This should be remembered we are a group of people playing dress up because we love a film. If all you care about is where you are in a parade you are doing it for the wrong reasons and if you are happy to be confused for real military and take that praise then you have a real problem.


Thanks for that!!!

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:41 pm 
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EDIT: Made thread sticky

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:29 pm 
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Big Stew wrote:
Last year there were multiple calls of thank you service from the crowd and at the end of the parade we were saluted by an amputee in a wheelchair This made me deeply uncomfortable and turned a fun experience in to a deeply unpleasant one, which i have no wish to ever repeat. there may have been a vocal minority but the drop off in the parade numbers should be taken into account.

This should be remembered we are a group of people playing dress up because we love a film. If all you care about is where you are in a parade you are doing it for the wrong reasons and if you are happy to be confused for real military and take that praise then you have a real problem.



Excellent points!!

You see, it's a difficult thing, trying to be "true" to a old movie, getting everything to look "just so" and walk out and not be recognized as a member of the USCM, but instead as a member of the USMC!!!

It's disheartening to be sure. No one wants to be confused with actual Military as we "play dress-up" as you said.

And when you add in the factor of the DragonCon Parade Organizers loving what you are doing, loving the Flags, wanting more, making sure that the group is identified as "Colonial Marines from the movie Aliens" and you STILL get mistaken as actual Military, it's frustrating.

Do you stop wearing the Service C's, as we did with the Dress Blues? Just have Armored Marines carrying the flags?

Could be. And we've done that and STILL be mistaken. Is it the general public's lack of knowledge? Is it just simply "guys carrying a flag, must be military" ??

Don't know. Could be. Maybe so, Maybe not.

But something else we need to clarify - NOBODY EVER SAID THEY WERE HAPPY ABOUT BEING CONFUSED FOR ACTUAL MILITARY!!!

Let's Be Clear On That.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:49 pm 
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Big Stew wrote:
Last year there were multiple calls of thank you service from the crowd and at the end of the parade we were saluted by an amputee in a wheelchair This made me deeply uncomfortable and turned a fun experience in to a deeply unpleasant one, which i have no wish to ever repeat. there may have been a vocal minority but the drop off in the parade numbers should be taken into account.


It is appropriate - in fact, it is correct - for service members to salute the flag when it passes by in a parade. You can take comfort that they were likely saluting the colors and not you. But I get how you feel about it. It's clearly not anyone's intention to misrepresent what we're doing.

I wouldn't sweat the change, you are still going to be marching in the parade, and you can still have a lot of fun with it.

When stuff stops being fun, we have to question if we're doing it right.

I'm planning to get to D*Con next year, and I'm looking forward to being a part of whatever USCM does there.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 5:15 pm 
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most people I see the other week at a comic con kept saying cool mobile infantry costume lol


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 5:21 pm 
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agg cook wrote:
most people I see the other week at a comic con kept saying cool mobile infantry costume lol

It is infuriating. I think we have all had our share of "starship troopers?", "Great GI Joe!", and my personal favorite "that is not a very good Halo costume..."


In any case, having marched in 3 parades (1 in the color guard) I am sad to see it go, but completely understand. I feel like valid arguments have been made by both sides over the years and I have also personally experienced the 'highs' and 'lows' described by others regarding it. Overall it is hard to ignore the declining interest as the argument tie-breaker. If we can't "field a team" it is better to shut it down and focus our efforts on the main group. I eagerly await my next chance to take part in the parade.


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 Post subject: Re: *****Disbanding of the Color Guard****
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:44 pm 
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All valid points.

My sincere Thanks to everyone who has marched/is marching in any parade representing the AL.

I wish I would have been there more than just once and
I can fully understand that no one of us wants to be "mistaken" as USMC Marine. They are the few ... we are a fan group.

To those who marched: You all did a great job!
@Dom: Sir, You are a great drill instructor! Thanks!

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:26 pm 
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Going to admit the colour guard last time I did it was no fun, certain people were treating it as a real military parade and the pressure not to screw up was horrible, which is why the last parade I did I wore C's at the back and even then certain people were not happy about it like they owned the parade

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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 3:31 pm 
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Erik_MAA wrote:
Big Stew wrote:
Last year there were multiple calls of thank you service from the crowd and at the end of the parade we were saluted by an amputee in a wheelchair This made me deeply uncomfortable and turned a fun experience in to a deeply unpleasant one, which i have no wish to ever repeat. there may have been a vocal minority but the drop off in the parade numbers should be taken into account.


It is appropriate - in fact, it is correct - for service members to salute the flag when it passes by in a parade. You can take comfort that they were likely saluting the colors and not you. But I get how you feel about it. It's clearly not anyone's intention to misrepresent what we're doing.

I wouldn't sweat the change, you are still going to be marching in the parade, and you can still have a lot of fun with it.

When stuff stops being fun, we have to question if we're doing it right.

I'm planning to get to D*Con next year, and I'm looking forward to being a part of whatever USCM does there.



i was no where near the flag and it was random general public saying thank you for service. if i do the parade again i will happy to be far away from the colour guard.

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 Post subject: Re: *****Disbanding of the Color Guard****
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:55 pm 
Lifer
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Well it was a good run- 10 years. Glad to have been with the initial part of it... and sorry to see it end on a sour note.

I know I haven't been around in a long while, but having been a part of the Colour Guard in its beginning I'd like to throw in my 2 cents.

With respect to the debate on how "military" we were trying to be, I think there needs to be some context and background about how the Colour Guard came to be-

Back in 2006, a USCM flag was created for a specific purpose- to simply help identify the group during the parade. During the first years of the parade (2003 on) we didn't have anyone in an Alien costume. We ALWAYS got called "Starship Troopers" or GI Joe, or frankly anything other than "Aliens" or "Colonial Marines." IIRC it was carried by Tony Leach the first year. There was no Colour Guard, no other flags, and (correct me if I'm wrong) no one even wearing Service Cs.

In 2007 Chris Chulamanis asked if he could carry the flag for the parade that year. He was happy and proud to do it. As Tony did the previous year, he just carried it in his armour.

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In August of 2007 "I" started kicking around the idea of a formal Dress Blues uniform for the USCM. This was received with mixed responses ranging from Sounds Awesome to Don't You Dare.

----

In Jan of 2008 Chris Chulamanis passed away after having had a major heart attack.

That year- we decided that we would put together an "Honour Guard" as a tribute to Chris. We would carry the USCM Flag, US Flag and multiple other represented countries. Dom would lead us calling out commands and the group truly attempting to march in step. We wore black FNG (Chris' screenname) armbands.

At the same time, my putting together a Dress Blues uniform took on a whole new (and what I sincerely believed at the time) higher purpose as I would be carrying the USCM flag. It ended up causing some heated arguments- some board members actually quit in disgust. However I was bound and determined to have it ready for D-Con that year for Chris' tribute.

I was the Parade Liason for D-Con back then and when I told the D-Con organizers we had a "flag party", they were ecstatic and placed our group from roughly the middle, to the front of the parade. It was fantastic news as it felt that not only would Chris' tribute be first in the parade line up, but that our group was finally getting the recognition it deserved.

And so we marched for the first time as a unit (with the armoured Marines following in a loose "check those corners" group). We did receive some flak about the order the flags were in. And yes- I got a couple of "Thank you for your service"--- which did make me feel uncomfortable and like an imposter (which was the furthest thing I was trying to do). It was the one and only time I wore my Dress Blues at D-Con, and my only participation in the Colour Guard. In 2009 I went back to being a grunt, and that also happened to be my last Dragon Con.

The following years the Colour Guard became a tradition. Although I had stopped going to DC, I followed the progress- it seemed that there was a need to outdo ourselves from the previous year- more flags, more dress uniforms, staying in step while marching etc. And I did hear the flak of being mistaken for an actual military unit. It was never the intent.

I'm hoping this sheds some light on how this came about.

Kevin

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 Post subject: Re: *****Disbanding of the Color Guard****
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 9:10 pm 
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SSgt Burton wrote:
The following years the Colour Guard became a tradition. Although I had stopped going to DC, I followed the progress- it seemed that there was a need to outdo ourselves from the previous year- more flags, more dress uniforms, staying in step while marching etc. And I did hear the flak of being mistaken for an actual military unit. It was never the intent.

I'm hoping this sheds some light on how this came about.

Kevin



Thank YOU Kevin!!!

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 Post subject: Re: *****Disbanding of the Color Guard****
PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2018 12:12 pm 
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Thank you for your perspective and the history of the color guard kevin :)

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2018 4:58 pm 
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If I had a dollar for every "Starship Troopers", "GI Joe", "Halo", and you won't believe this.... "Ghostbusters", I'd be able to buy Dragon Con.

I hated being mistaken for real military. I'd give the standard answer to everyone who said it; "It's only a costume. None of the unit patches, medals or insignia are authentic." And if they did thank me for my service, I'd say thanks, but I served with the U.S. Army, not the Colonial Marines, this is just cosplay. The Color Guard to me was Colonial Marine pride and patriotism. I've done parades with REAL military units, in REAL uniform with REAL veterans, so being mistaken for real military was annoying, but I don't fault the ignorance of the public. I actually loved marching in armor. So much freedom and you can interact with the crowd. You realize how much you miss when marching stiff with head and eyes forward.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 1:43 pm 
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I'm always astonished when, at specific sci-fi and fantasy events, the general public think that anyone in vaguely military costume is part of the real-world military. Even if they don't know which film the characters are from, I can't quite understand how folks don't realise it's make-believe!

Harry

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 4:02 pm 
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Harry Harris wrote:
I'm always astonished when, at specific sci-fi and fantasy events, the general public think that anyone in vaguely military costume is part of the real-world military. Even if they don't know which film the characters are from, I can't quite understand how folks don't realise it's make-believe!

Harry

you would be surprised standing amongst loads of stormtrooper and other cosplay people at an event the other week I was asked multiple time during the day if I was a real soldier/security and is it a real gun you could also see by the looks people gave walking past that they are thinking the same thing and are not sure if they should come near yo or not


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 10:31 pm 
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After seeing someone in a dalek costume getting compliments for the "sweet R2D2!", I've lost most faith in congoing masses.

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 Post subject: Re: *****Disbanding of the Color Guard****
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 12:15 am 
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I am truly proud of the colour guard and our parade group no matter what has gone on in the background. Being at the front of the parade is awesome. I have marched 4 times and once I was able to bring my Australian flag and I marched in cams and not in the service c's. Trying to be better and better with looking awesome is a great idea, I just think the pressure to be 'just like in the military' got to a lot of people though. It will be a true loss to this parade and this group if the colour guard is dropped.

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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:53 pm 

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bigbisont wrote:
[ "that is not a very good Halo costume..."


HAHAHAAHHAHAAHA! That's awesome (although I'm sure if it were me hearing that, I've have have been super-stabby).

*IF* I have get over to a Con in the US, I'm totally dropping this line to every CM that I meet :D

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 16, 2018 9:37 am 
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Triumph wrote:
If I had a dollar for every "Starship Troopers", "GI Joe", "Halo", and you won't believe this.... "Ghostbusters", I'd be able to buy Dragon Con.



You wouldn't believe the amount of "Stargate" comments I get. Its worse when doing my officers uniform!

Sorry to see the CG go, but given how old the film is now, are the Service C's recognisable as being part of that film to most people?

I think most peoples knowledge of the Alien films comes from AVP nowadays... :(


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 6:26 am 

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Wish I could have seen it.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 7:19 pm 
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Sorry to hear this news. The colour guard in the parade was something I was really looking forward to experience one day. Makes me sad that I didn't had enough funds at the time to fly out there from California and be a part of such an awesome event as shown on youtube. I would get hyped up and motivated to see that every time. I guess I kinda know how some people would get frustrated/uncomfortable by people mistaking them for actual soldiers, GI Joe's, halo characters ect. But it comes at no surprise to me because you gotta take in consideration that James Cameron did heck of a really good job at making the marines, weapons and gear look like if it's really from the future and they do represent The United States Armed forces after all. I agree with SimonT. Most People nowadays only know of aliens from the AVP movies and that's ok because I know for a fact that some members here got into this from watching those films first. Hopefully one day, this issues with the colour guard get talked about and resolved because it did look impressive. Either way I'm still gonna go some day to Dragon con and meet my fellow marines. On my part im still going to represent/ promote as a USCM cosplayer the franchise that started it all for me, and I may like Star wars, Predators, starship troopers ect, but the one that will always come first in my life is ALIENS.

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