Apparently, President Obama and his Secretary of Defense, Ash Carter, think the American military should be a social engineering laboratory rather than an aggressive war-fighting machine. I came to this troubling conclusion after reading a recent diversity directive from Air Force Secretary Deborah James.
Ms. James has mandated “the pool of airmen (or air persons) considered for key military developmental positions include at least one qualified, diverse candidate.” While that’s not an unreasonable requirement, it’s clear Ms. James and her overseers at the Pentagon and in the White House will give special preference to diverse, minority applicants — sort of an unwritten quota system.
A second initiative requires “Development Teams and Command Selection Boards ... must have a certain number of diverse candidates sitting on them.” In other words, the heads of these boards will have to provide clear justification if they decide to make decisions that run-up against the president’s diversity goals. Quotas anyone?
In my humble opinion, as an Air Force veteran, this is just the latest in a series of moves by the Obama administration designed to emasculate the American military and to convert it from a fearsome fighting force into a politically correct social engineering laboratory. One recent directive from Navy Secretary Ray Mabus ordered the Navy and Marines to remove the words “man” and “men” from all combat job descriptions. Thus, we’ll have Navy persons and combat infantry persons. That should strike fear into the hearts of our enemies, who we can’t name.
So is it more important to be politically correct or to defeat radical Islamic terrorism on the battlefield? I think I know President Obama’s answer to that question, and I fear former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would follow that same misguided policy if she becomes our next president, which seems increasingly likely as egomaniacal businessman Donald Trump self-destructs on the campaign trail.
My Air Force experience taught me fighter pilots are first among equals in that particular branch of the armed forces. For one reason or another, most fighter pilots are white males, although there are increasing numbers of well-qualified female fighter pilots. And here I want to state clearly qualified women should have equal access to all jobs in the military, even as front-line combat troops if they can meet the same — not “almost the same” — standards as their male counterparts.
Another aspect of the emasculation of the American military is the amount of attention being paid to transgender soldiers, sailors and air persons. Earlier this month the Defense Department issued a handbook on “transgender service in the U.S. military.” The handbook describes a fictional senior officer, Tony, who’s transitioning to become Tanya. He/she is about halfway through the transitioning process.
“Midway through hormone treatment, it becomes increasingly difficult for Tony/Tanya to meet male body composition and physical readiness standards,” the handbook states. So what should his/her commanding officers do? Answer: “Work with the military personnel system to obtain proper waivers for male physical readiness standards during the period of gender transition.” Really?
If Tony/Tanya is certified for gender reassignment surgery — a sex change operation — it will cost taxpayers a minimum of $50,000, and probably a lot more. That’s what we paid for a traitor, Sgt. Bradley (now Chelsea) Manning, to have a sex change operation after he/she was convicted of espionage for delivering highly sensitive military secrets to Wikileaks. And now she and her oh-so-sensitive enablers want DoD to mandate transgender bathrooms in military prisons.
So that’s how the Obama administration is emasculating the American military. In Spanish I’d say “Basta ya!” (enough already).
Guy W. Farmer is the Appeal’s senior political columnist.