At the ripe old age of 234, the Navy suffers from an identity crisis. Efforts to answer the simplest questions—who we are and what we stand for—never end. A simple, consistent message has long perplexed us.
For an example of service identity, we should look to the Marine Corps. Its advertising has had a simple message for a long time: the Marine Corps is tough, it will make you tougher, and you'll serve a higher purpose. That's a straightforward message based on fundamental beliefs and an unwavering culture.
The Marine Corps' message hasn't changed because Marines know their identity. They understand who they are and what their mission is, and those things haven't changed. They owe no apologies for being so uncomplicated, and, to their credit, they offer none.