When a private in the United States Army addresses or is being addressed by a NCO, they stand at the position of Parade Rest. This position is done by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and you arms bent at a ninety degree angle with your hands interlocked together in the small of your back. Your head and eyes follow the NCO or officer speaking until they move out of you range of vision. Then, your head snaps forward. You peak only when spoken to, and you listen. The position shows a lot without saying them. Three expressions shown by this position are showing respect, courtesy, and the private knowing their place in the rank of the Army.
Showing respect to a NCO demonstrates a few different intentions of lower ranking enlisted personnel. By standing at Parade Rest, one proves that they don’t have as much experience as the NCO does, thus exhibiting respect to them. For example, when a NCO is teaching someone, they show their respect by standing at this position. This shows the mutual respect given to the NCO. Also, let’s say that the Joe may not like the NCO as a person. But, by standing at Parade Rest, they are showing that they do respect the rank; meaning the training and experience the NCO has.
As an American soldier, you are taught to be courteous and good natured; not only to their follow Americans, but also to their NCO’s and officers. By standing at Parade Rest for an NCO, you are being polite to them. For example, when they are addressing a group its polite to stand at this position for them. Being polite to an NCO goes a long way.
Also having the lower enlisted men stand at this position shows that they know where they stand in the ranks when it comes to respect and politeness. Show the higher ranking officials that you understand your place is a sign that you hold them in high regard. In the army food chain, one must keep their place until allowed to advance. This keeps order within the units and keeps people in line that don’t have the...