Over the past decade we have noticed a rampant increase in the number of people who are wearing their orders, decorations and medals incorrectly. The cadre of people who flagrantly violate the official rules on how you are supposed to wear your medals ranges from the average veteran right up to current and former Governors General. Indeed, there is much evidence to suggest that the higher the rank of the individual the more likely they are to just wear whatever they want, however they want. We like to think of this as “Instant Dictator Syndrome” or self-aggrandizement at its most obvious.

Why do people wear their medals incorrectly? Often it is because they simply do not know any better. If you are one of these people you should consult WEARING ORDERS, DECORATIONS AND MEDALS which is available from the Chancellery of Honours at Rideau Hall. This guide will help you figure out how you are supposed to wear your officially granted orders, decorations and medals.

When it comes to wearing your medals incorrectly the worst offenders tend to be former Governors General, Lieutenant Governors and retired Generals. When these people – all in authority and all surrounded by staff who know better – wear their medals wrong they are obviously suffering from the dreaded Instant Dictator Syndrome. The attitude accompanied with this most severe condition is “the more medals I wear the more important I will look.”

This simple blog is aimed at revealing the myriad of fellow Canadians who cannot seem to wear their medals correctly.

Saturday, October 9, 2010


Olympic style neck badges! How many more can he add?
Although this is a new blog, I thought it only fitting to select each month a prime offender of the rules for wearing orders, decorations and medals in Canada. Colonel Ethell is the first winner of this prize. There is no medal associated with this award. We wouldn't want to be responsible for Lieutenant Governor Ethell being forced to commit additional medal wearing errors. 

While he may be the most decorated peacekeeper in Canadian history he doesn't know how to wear his medals at all. First off his medal bar is twice the length allowed by CF regulations. If the Duke of Edinburgh can overlap his medals, surely Colonel Ethell can do the same. Next there is the issue of two neck orders. In civilian attire you are only allowed to wear one at a time, yet this Lieutenant Governor is doubling up, as though he is a recently returned athlete from the Beijing Olympics, wearing all his gold medals. It just looks utterly ridiculous. We all know that Colonels are difficult to control but surely someone can offer this otherwise distinguished Canadian some direction on the proper wearing of his many orders, decorations and medals. You would think that a retired Colonel would be at least peripherally aware of the rules and regulations for wearing his various honours -- especially as they are so plenteous in this case. 

No comments:

Post a Comment