A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from October 24, 2014
“The military is protecting democracy, not practicing it”

The American military defends democracy, but the military itself is not a democracy. “We’re here to preserve democracy, Mr. Hunter, not to practice it” is from the novel Crimson Tide (1995) by Richard P. Henrick. “We’re here to preserve democracy, not practice it” was said by Captain Frank Ramsey (played by actor Gene Hackman) in the film Crimson Tide (1995).

It’s not certain if the saying had existed before the novel and film, but it quickly became accepted as a military adage. The words “preserve democracy” are often replaced with “protect democracy” or “defend democracy.” “We’re here to defend democracy not practice it” was cited in November 1995. “As we like to say in the Corps, ‘we’re in the business of protecting democracy, not practicing it’” was cited in 2008. “As the old adage goes, the military is protecting democracy, not practicing it” was cited in 2013.


Google Books
Crimson Tide:
A Novel

By Richard P. Henrick
New York, NY: Avon Books
1995
Pg. 97:
“We’re here to preserve democracy, Mr. Hunter, not to practice it.”

The Internet Movie Database
Crimson Tide (1995)
Quotes

Capt. Ramsey: We’re here to preserve democracy, not practice it.

Google News Archive
12 May 1995, Ocala (FL) Star-Banner, “Movies: Washington and Hackman go deep,” On The Go, pg. 19, col. 1:
And, he adds, while the junior office is free to disagree, he should never do so in front of the men: “We are here to preserve democracy, not to practice it.”

Google Groups: uk.media.radio.archers
Don’t forget - remembrance Sunday ...
Paul Store
11/12/95
(...)
“We’re here to defend democracy not practice it.”
“Peace through Superior firepower”, USMC.

Truth in Media
WHEN CULTURES COLLIDE…
By Bob Djurdjevic
(...)
Having moved from the East Coast to the western U.S. in the 19th century so as to escape religious persecution, the Mormons appear poised to get on the offensive in the next century. Not only do their reproductive policies match or exceed those of the Catholics or the Muslims, but their religious leaders run a very tight ship. “We are here to defend democracy, not to practice it” - is the way the Mormon religious boot-camps seem to operate
(...)
Bob Djurdjevic, Phoenix, Arizona, Dec. 20, 1995

U.S. Militaria Forum
Brig
Posted 28 April 2008 - 07:30 AM
I think we need more of a committee. Preferably presided over by someone with much more freedom than the Marine Corps grants me. As we like to say in the Corps, “we’re in the business of protecting democracy, not practicing it”

Palm Center
“We’re Here To Defend Democracy, Not To Practice It.”
Submitted by Guest Blogger on Tue, 12/22/2009 - 12:39pm
(by Christian Leuprecht, Bicentennial Visiting Associate Professor in Canadian Studies at Yale University)
Armed forces around the world are curiously apprehensive about diversity. When prodded, the ubiquitous response by those in uniform is: “We’re here to defend democracy, not to practice it.” Implicit in this claim is the proposition in an allegedly inherent contradiction: That mounting an effective defence of the democratic way of life and its fundamental values of freedom, equality, and justice requires undemocratic practices that skirt these values.

Random Rants of Steph
Monday, February 4, 2013
Posted by Stephanie at 12:30 PM
(...)
First of all, the military does not send home a permission slip to be signed by the wife/girlfriend before deployment or before they leave. There is no vote. (Remember, the military is protecting democracy, not practicing it.)

Parade magazine
4 Things About Military Life That Might Surprise You
AUGUST 29, 2013 – 4:30 PM
By SARAH SMILEY @SarahSmiley
(...)
There is no “agree/disagree” box to check when your military spouse is sent on an assignment. The military doesn’t poll its members before a deployment. As the old adage goes, the military is protecting democracy, not practicing it.

Bangor (ME) Daily News
The military: Sacrificing personal freedoms for you
By Sarah Smiley,
Posted Oct. 19, 2014, at 9:24 a.m.
(...)
Because in the military, where your boss still has authority over how you wear your mustache, no one cares about what’s “fair.” In fact, the old adage is this: “We’re protecting democracy, not practicing it.”

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • Friday, October 24, 2014 • Permalink