Dear Airmen on gate guard duty at Scott,
I'm not sure whether this has been brought to your attention yet, but your appearance and demeanor MATTER. You are repesenting not only your career field, but also your branch of service when you work the gate; you are the first thing visitors to this base see. Ever hear the saying 'first impressions count'? Yeah. Apply that to yourselves. It's not a good idea to wear unathorized clothing on the gate, and it's also not a good idea to wear a uniform that looks like you just rolled out of bed.
It's also a GREAT idea to verbally ackowledge that you've seen a person's ID and it's okay for them to proceed. Grunting is not acceptable, and neither is total silence. I never know whether it's ok for me to go through when that happens, and that's why I ask you. I'm not doing it to be a bitch, I'm asking because I've seen the damage all the security measures in place at the gate can do to a vehicle, and I really like my car the way it is. I'm not asking for an entire conversation, but 'thank you' or 'have a nice day' would be nice.
The gate is not the place to conduct personal conversations when traffic is backed up for half a mile. Take today, for instance: there was a long line of vehicles waiting to come on via the Belleville gate, and whilst there were two of you standing there, only one was checking IDs and waving traffic. The other one of you was standing there, and you were both running your yaps. That's a bad image to present, fellas. Both of you should have been taking care of business; your conversation could have waited until the line wasn't so long and traffic wasn't so heavy. It's ok to chit-chat, but not at the expense of the people coming on base.
You might want to take the security aspect of your job a little more seriously, too. Some of you take my ID and don't even LOOK at it, you just hand it right back to me. Others take it, flip it in a split second and then hand it back. I know that you can't possibly have seen the pertinent information on it in that short amount of time. How do you know that it's me, that it's my ID card if you don't look a the photo? You may think that I'm being pedantic and that it's none of my business how you operate on the gate, but I disagree. It's very much my business: security is EVERYONE'S business. I LIVE here; my family relies on you for our security.
I also think that how you look is my business. I'm proud to be an Air Force wife; I'm proud of my husband and his colleagues and the things they do for this country. When you look like a big bag of shite, it reflects on him, and by proxy, on me.
Today it was just me coming through the gate and noticing these things. Next time you may not be so lucky - it might be a General who notices and who takes action, or worse still, it could be a terrorist. The consquences from the former can be unpleasant, but the consquences from the latter...well, it doesn't bear thinking about.
So c'mon, guys. Get your act together before something catastrophic happens.
A Proud Air Force Wife.
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