On Monday US Air Force Academy Superintendent LtGen Jay Silveria appeared at the Anti-Defamation League’s “Never is Now” Summit on Anti-Semitism, where he spoke on diversity. According to a USAFA press release, he accepted an award for his response to the racial slurs written at the USAFA Prep School — which are now known to have been a hoax.
Oddly, the press release doesn’t Read more
The US Air Force Academy announced that the racial slurs written on message boards at the USAFA Prep School in September were written by one of the supposedly targeted black cadets [emphasis added]:
In a written statement Tuesday, the academy said, “We can confirm that one of the cadet candidates who was allegedly targeted by racist remarks written outside of their dorm room was actually responsible for the act. The individual admitted responsibility and this was validated by the investigation.”
Even at the time a few people cautiously wondered if the incident was too “obvious” to be true, particularly in light of the other racial incidents going Read more
In a widely reported incident, US Air Force Academy Superintendent LtGen Jay “Tonto”* Silveria took to the staff tower at the cadet dining hall (Mitchell Hall) to tell USAFA cadets that racial slurs had been written on message boards at the nearby Academy Preparatory School, essentially a junior college for those who will eventually join the Air Force Academy.
In a five minute speech in which he notes hundreds of staff and faculty are lining the walls, LtGen Silveria eventually boiled it down to a simple statement:
If you can’t treat someone with dignity and respect, then get out.
Then he walked away.
That’s a call with which anyone can agree. Treating a Read more
US Army SFC Timothy Seppala is a Religious Affairs Specialist, otherwise known as a chaplain’s assistant. He recently wrote a few articles about the chaplaincy and one on “Reconciling your Morality: Finding the Common Ground.”
The article begins with a fairly reassuring statement that morality is “highly objective”, but it soon becomes clear SFC Seppala meant the other word [emphasis added]:
The truth is that morality can come from almost anywhere and is something that is unique to each individual.
As you can imagine, having so many sources of morality leads to many different views on what is right and wrong.
In other words, Seppala mean to say morality is subjective, not objective. That doesn’t bode well for the rest of the article on morality.
Seppala goes on to note that social issues divide society — and the US military reflects the society from which it is drawn, even on issues of morality [emphasis added]: Read more
The US Department of Defense is issuing its policies on “transgenders” serving in the military service-by-service. As noted at the Air Force Times, the US Air Force became the latest to release its policies (PDF) on how its Airmen should conduct themselves with regard to grooming, uniform standards, and bathroom usage if they decide they want to be the other gender.
Interestingly, the Air Force made a point of emphasizing “respect” in differing beliefs (as opposed to behaviors) — even reminding transgender troops that they have to respect the “different views and beliefs” of their fellow Airmen [emphasis added]: Read more
The Department of Defense has published “An Implementation Handbook” to “Transgender Service in the US Military” (as a PDF). While apparently trying to be helpful, it contains a lot of “it depends” type answers. For example, will a Soldier get in trouble for using the “wrong” pronoun with respect to someone who is a male but claims to be female [emphasis added]?
Question: What pronouns should I use with transgender Service members?
Answer: This will vary by individual and unit. Transgender Service members should Read more
Continuing his theme of respect, Chief of Staff of the US Air Force General Mark Welsh published his latest Airman to Airman video (below), entitled “Dignity and Respect.”
General Welsh makes references to sexual assault and the common ill of ignoring “inappropriate jokes,” as well as saying some people have made the excuse that the “bad behavior is part of our heritage.” Some of those comments appear to be references to the perception of a plague of sexual assault in the military as well as the complaint that brought about the Air Force-wide scrub of offensive material.
Importantly, General Welsh said Read more
In a commentary entitled “Every Airman Counts: Treating each other with dignity and respect,” General Larry Spencer, Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force, nobly attempted to laud the virtue of respect. He recounts the story of a fellow Airman using the “N word” during a flag football game many years ago:
I was certainly no stranger to harsh language or “trash talk.” However, this was different—and it literally hurt…I was an American Airman and I didn’t expect that kind of verbal attack from a fellow Airman…
Several Airmen, on both sides of the ball, spoke up — forcefully. They chastised the offender and made it clear they did not approve of his outbursts or attitude. The referee, who was an NCO, also stepped forward and not only ejected him from the game, but directed him to report to his first sergeant the following day. The next day, not only did my teammates (on both teams) go out of their way to apologize for this single Airman’s behavior, but the Airman who committed the act also personally apologized.
Gen Spencer later said Read more