Like you I have no military background, other than coming from a military family (mother's side). My intended military career was terminated before it could begin, but I do feel the same way -- yet my focus is mainly on insignia. To me someone who is wearing an A2 is not trying to look like a pilot -- it is after all a classic and almost universal piece of Americana, and I'd bet that most of the people who buy replica A2's in the US don't even realize what it is. Just perhaps that it has a classic old movie look about it.
Rather it is the guy wearing an A2 that has been covered with squadron patches and other military insignia that is trying to look like a pilot. After all, when was the last time you saw a real active duty military pilot wearing a plain A2 or G1? For me it is the insignia which demarks the line between ethical civilian wear and authentic military wear. To wear the latter, one should either be a pilot or a former pilot who has earned the right to wear each and every piece of insignia on it.
A grey area would be wearing an inherited vintage jacket (with insignia) from a family member who had served. Any thoughts from our former military pilots?
Since I was a kid I have coveted a "Flying Tigers" A2. You know the one with the "blood chit" sewn onto the back or into the lining? But nowadays manufacturers seem to only make full replicas of "Flying Tigers" jackets with all of the patches and insignia in addition to the blood chit, and these I flatly reject as unacceptable. Is this walking too fine a line?
Posted on Nov 24, 2001, 2:43 AM from IP address 18.104.22.168