Tuesday, July 17, 2012

What's sauce for the COB, should be sauce for the MIDN

It isn't just that we are all adults here - we are all professionals.

We are well past "young, dumb, and ...." - we are well past "innocence." Bravo Sierra to all that.

Every day in the Fleet we put our lives in the hands of young men and women who are 18, 19, 20. Previous generations put their lives in the hands of 16, 17, etc. Heck - entire armies were in the hands of 19-yr olds.

When someone is an adult and desires to be an Commissioned Officer - as a matter of fact holds the historically esteemed rank of Midshipman, not only should that person be held to a higher standard than a Senior Non-Commissioned Officer - the Wardroom should demand it.

Our Sailors are watching.

Case in point.

Via Sam Fellman at NavyTimes;
As the ballistic-missile submarine Nebraska’s patrol was extended last summer, an illicit onboard romance was about to boil over.

The lovers at the core of the gold crew scandal were notable in their contrasts: She was a Navy officer in the making, entering her final year at the academy. He was a 41-year-old enlisted sailor, a frocked master chief, with 20 years of service.

New on board and there to learn, she answered seemingly to everyone. He was the chief of the boat, responsible for the crew’s conduct and answered directly to the skipper. She was single, he was married.

As the patrol dragged on, their relationship became an open secret, with Turley leading a cover-up that warped the culture onboard the boat, which contributed to another romance between a crew member and a female mid, official records detail. In this unduly familiar climate, one love-struck sailor went so far as to spy on another mid’s email.
The affair didn’t taper off even after the COB and the mid were on different coasts. On the contrary, Turley flew to the East Coast on Sept. 29 to see her. Earlier, he’d told a shipmate that the mid was going to get him a ticket to a Navy football game.

That Saturday, Navy lost in a nail-biter by one point to Air Force; while it isn’t clear whether Turley was in the stands, he had been in Annapolis for at least two days. He spent $20.11 at Chick and Ruth’s Delly, a diner near the academy on Sept. 30 and $9.79 at Potato Valley Cafe the next day, putting both Annapolis purchases on his government credit card. Over the five-day trip, Turley charged $451.15 to his government credit card account, statements show.
You get the idea - more high-school like behavior is in the article. Read it all if you must.

Here is the kicker:
The female mid was booted from the academy in her senior year and will likely have to repay the Navy the cost of her education, said academy spokesman Cmdr. William Marks, adding: “You can take this thorough, yet swift, action as a sign that we hold midshipmen to the highest standards.”

Marks declined to release her name per privacy laws.
Someone call the JAG for me - I need to know the Command options here.

To make this clear; these are two adults. Both have violated special trust and confidence - but the Midshipman more. She is an adult and she is a Midshipman, not a counselor a Baptist Vacation Bible Camp. It was her responsibility to set the tone and proper relationship. As senior, she has the responsibility. What is missing here to set and example so others may think twice? Simple - a tool we do not use enough; shame.

Privacy act by a55. This Midshipman needs to be named. The full unredacted report needs to be made public. The taxpayer subsidized her education and income - just like they did the Master Chief - as a result, they need to be treated the same.

She knew what she was doing as a woman - and more importantly, she knew what she was doing as a Midshipman.

The service should demand the most public and open demonstration that we do not approve of such behavior. Name them and shame them is the phrase.

If you are going to do that to the Master Chief - you have to - no by honor - you must do that to the Midshipman. If you don't, you only deserve the scorn the Sailors will throw your way.


Gaetano01 said...

You should be glad she was actually separated ... The journalist surely knows the midns name, he could have included it in the article if he wanted to.

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