Todd Starnes: Lackland Air Force Base’s Politically Correct Agenda

by Sonny Hernandez

Todd Starnes reported a controversial story about an email that was sent by a senior Air Force leader to an untold number of personnel at Lackland Air Force Base, which should cause observers to wonder if it is a politically correct agenda that shows partiality toward those who care more about sensitivity than service.

Starnes alleges an incensed Airman sent him a copy of an email which did not address integrity, service before self, or excellence — instead, the email addressed issues that could be construed as offensive to others. It would be expected for the military to ensure compliance that sexual harassment, slander, and moral turpitude would not be tolerated. It is ironic that the email did not address any of the aforementioned compliances. Instead, the Air Force advised the Airmen to study a list of words, which should cause observers to be vexed: 

  1. Boy
  2. Girl
  3. You People
  4. Colonial
  5. Blacklist
  6. Blackmail
  7. Blackball
  8. Sounds Greek to me
  9. Blondes have more fun
  10. Too many chiefs, not enough Indians

Out of all of the alleged words that could be construed as offensive, how can the reference to boy or girl be offensive? Is the Air Force sending a message that they will seek adjudicating discipline upon Airmen who use the words boy or girl? According to the email sent to Starnes, this could be the disposition:

“Please be cognizant that such conduct is 100 percent zero tolerance in or outside of the work climate…

“Let’s capitalize on our richly diverse climate, and help others seek assistance if they are struggling with compliance.”

As a result of the email, Starnes contacted the Lackland AFB to investigate the trifling issues of using the words boy or girl. Starnes claims the Public Affairs spokesperson told him “The Air Force has no list of prohibited terms…”

If the Air Force has no list of prohibited terms, why would a senior officer send an email to an untold number of personnel at Lackland AFB that “such conduct is 100 percent zero tolerance in or outside of the work climate”? According to Starnes, Public Affairs also informed him “It was sent out by an individual simply reminding Airmen to be respectful to others.”

According to Starnes:

“This is a case of the Air Force getting caught red-handed trying to advance a politically correct agenda. And now that I’ve got a copy of the evidence, they are attempting to whitewash the situation.

“Based on my interpretation of the email, it’s pretty clear that Airmen have been advised not to use those words in any sort of context – on or off base.”

It is ironic the Public Affairs response to Starnes does not comport with the email sent by the senior officer to the untold number of personnel at Lackland AFB. When the Air Force sends a 100 percent zero tolerance “in or out of the workplace” email by a senior officer, Airmen are expected to obey the orders of the officers appointed over them or else face administrative sanctions. It would be interesting to see if Public Affairs will elucidate further if Airmen will be punished if they use the words boy or girl “in or out of the workplace” to settle this confounding issue for the Airman who contacted Starnes.

Objective observers may wonder if the Air Force is pandering to a politically correct agenda. “It’s time for Defense Secretary James Mattis to root out political correctness in the Armed Forces. We must never again allow the greatest fighting force on the planet to be used as a social engineering petri dish,” said Starnes.

Airmen are in need of prayer. Airmen are trained to bear true faith and allegiance, and to serve with integrity, selfless service, and to excel in all that they do. Airmen are not trained to worry about violating a zero tolerance mandate that would require them to live in fear being punished for calling another Airmen boy or girl.

May God have mercy, and grant repentance for the manifold sins that exists in this nation.

Previously discussed here.

Chaplain (Capt) Sonny Hernandez is a US Air Force Reserve Chaplain assigned to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. In April 2015, he was selected as the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Individual Mobilization Augmentee Company Grade Officer of the Year, and in May 2016, he was selected as 445th Airlift Wing CGO of the Quarter, first quarter. Hernandez earned a Doctorate from Tennessee Temple University in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

The opinions expressed here are solely his and do not necessarily represent the views of any government, military, or religious organization. Sonny Hernandez wrote this article as a civilian on his own time on an issue of public interest.



  • With all due respect, Boy, this is much ado about nothing. Crying “wolf” where none exists diminishes your credibility when issues arise that demand legitimate critique.

    The simplest reading of this list by a reasonable person would reveal a slate of terms that have simply gone out of style and should be avoided out of respect for another. Calling a man “Boy” or a woman “Girl” in this era is disrespectful. End of story.

    There is no nefarious conspiracy here attempting to undermine naming conventions for gender at Lackland or anywhere else. If charges of hypersensitivity can be leveled against others for seeing offense were none exists, we should be man enough to recognize the same unhelpful error in our own thinking.

    Just calling a spade a spade. Got it, Boy?

    • Anonymous Patriot

      Mr. Wright, you are sadly misinformed.

      There is indeed a nefarious purpose behind this list of words. Not the least because, contrary to your opinion, worlds such as “boy”, “girl”, “you people”, “blacklist”, and “blackmail” are commonly used words that have no prejudicial context whatsoever. A “reasonable person”, as you stated, would realize that. In particular, a sane, reasonable person would never see the phrase “you people” with negative connotations

      What this is, is a nefarious attempt at using the military to promote social justice causes that have no benefit whatsoever to force-readiness and discipline. It is nefarious because it is pulling resources and attention away from needed prospects, and putting them on minor issues that only thin-skinned snowflakes think is important. It is a relic of the disastrous Obama Administration and needs to stop. Period.

      By the way, people call each other boy and girl all the time without any problems.

    • @Jacob Wright
      Some might log this under (official) “silliness” as opposed to “nefarious.” While it may not be earth shattering, surely you’d agree its a bit ridiculous. And yes, it is not uncommon for some in the military to use “boys and girls” or “the little boys room” or some such variation. It’s a bit hypersensitive to think that’s offensive — unless we want to start talking about the very concept of maleness and femaleness being offensive.

      we should be man enough…

      Well played.

  • # Jacob Wright, regardless of your opinion, it obviously raises concerns since the PA is denying what Starnes has revealed. I think the point that Starnes is trying to make is that the military must seek reform so it does not pander to political correctness. I agree that several of the words listed are important, but to press a zero tolerance policy on using the words boy or girl, should cause concern. Therefore, lets not be naive, or stupefy ourselves to think that this is “crying wolf,” especially since the culture is desperately wicked.

    Thanks Boy.

  • Airmen at BMT need to learn to refer to one another as men and women, not boys and girls.