[March 15, 2023] You have nothing better to do than to be right. That is at the heart of being a person; one who knows what is good, acts properly, does not break in the face of evil or tragedy, and stands with those who are weak and defenseless. A young Army Officer asked me the other day what to do about the “wokeness” in the military. And that is a monumental question.
Talk it over with your family and friends. If you are going to enter the fray, you had best not do it accidentally or without being prepared. Get your civilian resume in order. Layout an alternative pathway forward for you and your family. There will be other places where you can find work, but you must have that in your back pocket because you cannot enter this arena without being prepared and doing it stupidly and impulsively.
You need to think about what you are fighting, and if you are a sensible military Officer, you are fighting to serve your Soldiers properly and to tell them the truth about what you are fighting. I do not think there is a more despicable sin than corrupting your Soldiers, or allowing them to be corrupted, to the point they cannot defend America. That is wickedness with severe consequences.
The only other hellish error you can make is doing nothing but violating your own conscience out of spite and bitterness. If you are entrusted with the training and care of other Soldiers, you will have to take your blows, but that is much easier than losing control of your soul.
There are times when all you get to do is pick which hell you will wander into because, in some sense, you are already there. Today, there are many corrupted institutions; if you happen to be inside one of them, you will find your path difficult but not impossible. You have a moral obligation to point out corruption and do so properly, with thoughtful, reasoned, insightful, and articulate speech.
Very few people believe having a woke military is a good idea. It is a perversity that our senior leaders have allowed this to happen. Doing something to expose the corrupting effect of wokeness will take you on an adventure if you decide to go up against the demon Moloch. Do not do that lightly.
You are going to fight this battle one way or another. We are all in it. You might think that you might keep your mouth shut and wait and not make any waves. The problem is that the longer you keep your mouth shut, you get weaker and older, and those you are not pushing back against are getting stronger.
If you think you will handle the exposure of the corruption in 10 years, no, you won’t; there will be less of you in 10 years than there is now. The solution is here, so you might as well swallow the bitter pill and understand that you probably don’t have anything better to do anyway.
Get out of your comfort zone and take on the dragon. What else do you have to do? We are built for struggle and adventure, not for comfort. And, you will find the meaning of your life in adventure. One thing we know is that the adventure of your life is embedded in truthful speech. This means if you remain silent, then you are not living, and you will be weak and deceitful and suffer and waste yourself
You can also imagine that you have nothing better to do than what’s right. Not just morally better in terms of your traditional military duty, but literally, you have nothing better to do than to do what’s right.
Every time you are silent when you have something to say, the tyrant takes a little more ground, and that’s on you.
Please read my books:
Easy to say, very hard to do and do right.
Got that right, Bernard.
“Get out of your comfort zone.” Yep, that is what my dad always said to me. It helped.
“Every time you are silent when you have something to say, the tyrant takes a little more ground, and that’s on you.” – Gen. Satterfield, ouch, now that is something we should all never ever ever forget.
Yusaf, thanks for the note. Yes, I do believe this is a crucial piece of advice that we should all take to heart.
Thank you sir, it is always wonderful to hear from you here in the forums area. All of us are appreciating your daily articles and we also wish you the best of health. Please continue with your blog. For nine years, you’ve been entertaining us, advising us, and pushing us along the most narrow path to do what is best for all poeples of every stripe. Instead of advocating for woke ideology or Marxism (neo-Marxism), or devil worship like so many do, you are a pillar of sanity.
Thank you for reinforcing important points. Gets us quickly on track.
“The first and greatest victory is to conquer yourself; to be conquered by yourself is of all things most shameful and vile.” by Plato, that’s me, er actually not me but someone you should read closely
Love your Plato moniker. 😊
If you think you will handle the exposure of the corruption in 10 years, no, you won’t; there will be less of you in 10 years than there is now. – Gen. Doug Satterfield. Best of the best thinkers — love this leadership website.
I think we all love this website – for leaders but also for us all – so we can be better and better each day and not focus on those small things that tend to drag us downward into the hell of self pity.
Gen. Satterfield, thanks for another great story and slice of advice. I agree, if you cannot do what is ‘right,’ then do what you can best do to help those around you and keep yourself well ( so you continue to help people). That is the same thing as doing good.
Be “right” ….. yep, but what is right? That is something you should write about Gen. Satterfield. Like my mentors used to say to me, you need to know what right is before you can do right.
I think and so do you Army Capt, that Gen. Satterfield is writing about what is ‘morally’ right. In his book “55 Rules for a Good Life”, Gen. Satterfield discusses the morality of being right. You can see this in every page. Gen. S is all over the idea that we can know what is right because humans have known this for thousands of years. Just read the Bible, even from a practical view, go gain considerable insights.
….. but but but, there are just too many fragile, snowflakish young folks out there to cry over spilt milk.
Max, correct. And get a copy of the book and leave a book review on Amazon or Goodreads.
Good point, Army Captain. Some people just are unable to think it thru so we need to direct them there. That is why stories are one of those anceint ways.