I don't have to be concerned about everybody else's character.
— R. Lee Ermey
I always love to come to Austin.
For me, it's an honor for the military to ask me to go to Iraq, Afghanistan, or GITMO. I'm happy to go.
In order to be a good actor, I'm a firm believer that you need to bring something to the table.
I honestly do feel that I am a role model for young people.
The biggest problem was the politicians knew nothing about fighting a war.
When you try to find funding for a VVA function, it doesn't seem like it's any trouble at all. People come out of the woodwork with their money to help out because we went over and fought a war.
I've never had to spend any time in the VA hospital, so I really can't speak for those guys.
There's a lot of whiners in every crowd.
Without discipline, there is no Marine Corps.
The bad news motivated the drill instructors that much more.
I disagree with a lot of those changes, however at the end of the day - I go down to recruit graduation at least once or twice a year.
The drill instructor must have total and complete control. Mindless obedience is what he's after.
The best part about the movie, and everybody seems to rave about it, is the boot camp part.
Kubrick ate it up. He loved it. He just let me go crazy.
I'm never, like I say, I'm never happy, I'm never satisfied, it's never good enough.
Communications are better now than in my Vietnam days.
I try to get over to Iraq and Afghanistan as much as I can.
I hate to hear 'Less is more.' It's a crock of crap.
You'd be surprised how many kids and young people come to the website and send me email that they are actually going into the Marine Corp because of something that I said or did.
It's my firm conviction that when Uncle Sam calls, by God we go, and we do the best that we can.
Everybody respects the Vietnam Veterans of America.
I go the VA Hospital when I have a problem and the doctor jumps on me.
It's been a pretty fun ride, to tell you the truth.
We had times in '66 and '67 when we would pick up a platoon of privates out of the receiving barracks the week before we even graduated the platoon that we were on!
Back in the old Corp, we weren't training those privates to infiltrate into the peacetime Marine Corp. We were training those privates to go to Vietnam.
There have been a lot of changes in recruit training in the past twenty years.
Back in those days intimidation was the greatest tool the drill instructor had. Without that tool, he would not have had control.
Kubrick's films have life - they just never die.
Playing the good guy is tough because you know as well as I do, in real life, you have to watch your P's and Q's and conduct yourself in a respectable manner if you expect to have friends.
I play well with everybody.
I spend a lot of time with my characters.
Every character I've ever played, I always try to take him right to the edge and not allow him to fall over, but directors have a tendency to pull me back a little bit.
I firmly believe that you live and learn, and if you don't learn from past mistakes, then you need to be drug out and shot.
I don't have any respect at all for the scum-bags who went to Canada to avoid the draft or to avoid doing their fair share.
America's trying to do the best for its veterans.
There was a huge, tremendous amount of disabled veterans and the Veteran's Administration just wasn't geared up for it. I know for a fact that it's getting better and better.
I got space from Travis Air Force Base, went back to the Philippine Islands and made it a point to meet the only American casting director in the Philippines. I was off and running.
Drill instructors worked seven days a week, fifteen to seventeen hours a day in many cases, with no time off in between platoons.
Even though I disagree with many of the changes, when I see the privates graduate at the end of the day, when they walk off that drill field at the end of the ceremony, they are still fine privates; outstanding, well motivated privates.
I was stationed at a marine recruit depot in San Diego from 1965 to 1967.
I got to write most of everything I said.
That's all I cared about too, was getting it right.