One of the best things that was done in the last half decade, I thought, was to get rid of the requirement to have a photo prior to a promotion board. Ungh, they brought it back.
Hey, I still have my girlish figure and am in great shape for someone born in the 60s - so in theory I don't have a dog in this fight. Thing is, how I look has zero to do with my performance. How I look is based on the good genes I got from my parents.
There are a few (very few) officers who look better in uniform than I do, and many of them aren't worthy of using my parking space - even if they did bid on it during the NMCRS auction.
There are officers who look a lot worse then I do, yet do better on the PRT. They are better officers than I am. We are all "P/WS" on our FITREPS and to get to this point you can not look like 10lbs of shi'ite in a 5lb sack and get the FITREPS you need to get where we are. No one can. That is why it is reported twice, in the "Pass/Within Standards" block and the "Military Bearing" block. Why do we need a photo. You read the whole message, I'll parse it.
THIS NAVADMIN ANNOUNCES THE REINSTATEMENT OF THE REQUIREMENT FOR OFFICER PHOTOGRAPHS IN THE OFFICIAL MILITARY PERSONNEL FILE (OMPF) MAINTAINED ON THE ELECTRONIC MILITARY PERSONNEL RECORDS SYSTEM (EMPRS) AND CANCELS REF A. THIS INITIATIVE WILL REEMPHASIZE THE INTEGRAL ELEMENTS OF MILITARY BEARING AND PHYSICAL FITNESS TO SERVICE PROFESSIONALISM.Bravo Sierra. No it doesn't. We just blew that out of the water earlier. The FITREP covers both, and if you thing a picture of you that you prepare for and the PH helps set you up for to look as good as possible is going to tell you anything about a person's Military Bearing and physical fitness, then, well, you are deluding yourself. This will not catch a fatbody unless you have so little confidence in the integrity of your officer corps that you think that a person can be a slob and fatbody and not reported as such during his regular FITREPS. If you think that is true, then we have larger problems in our Navy than bringing back the huge waste of time and money the picture requirement represents. Ungh. Just plain ungh. Let's Fisk some more.
THIS POLICY WILL ALIGN MILITARY BEARING, PHYSICAL FITNESS/APPEARANCE AND OVERALL SERVICE PROFESSIONALISM WITHIN DON.Define, "align." No, that's OK, I'll do it for you.
a·lign /əˈlaɪn/ Pronunciation[uh-lahyn]Help a brother out, how does it do that again? Once again, if that isn't done in the FITREP, then why am I wasting so much of my and my officer's time doing those d@mn things?
–verb (used with object)
1. to arrange in a straight line; adjust according to a line.
2. to bring into a line or alignment.
3. to bring into cooperation or agreement with a particular group, party, cause, etc.: He aligned himself with the liberals.
4. to adjust (two or more components of an electronic circuit) to improve the response over a frequency band, as to align the tuned circuits of a radio receiver for proper tracking throughout its frequency range, or a television receiver for appropriate wide-band responses.
–verb (used without object)
5. to fall or come into line; be in line.
6. to join with others in a cause.
VADM Harvey, I respectfully submit that this is one of the worst ideas to come out of Millington in at least 3QFY07, heck, maybe the whole FY. Who talked you into this?
When it comes to picking the best officers to serve their nation in any time, much less in a time of war - a picture is one of the most worthless things you can use. Nelson was a one-eyed, one armed cripple who couldn't even pass the female PRT. Admiral Crowe? General Schwarzkopf? Do I really need to go on?
You know what this tells me - for some reason there is an agenda to want to see the face of the person and/or the body type of a person prior to a selection: the most superficial of determinations of an officer. I can only think of two reasons to do this that make sense (unless like mentioned above you have no faith in the honesty of your reporting seniors - then you have three): 1) There is a fetish out there for people who run to the point they have less than 10% body fat; 2) You are troubled by the fact that race is becoming self-reporting - that now that we can report "other" you cannot put people quite in the categories others demand - or you have officers out there that have blond hair and blue eyes but claim to be Hispanic.
None of the reasons are acceptable. I hope it is #1, that would be the smallest cancer to excise. Anyone out there think of another reason? I have had two people, one much senior to me, mention #2 in hushed voices.
Hey, you aren't paranoid if people are really out to get you.