Monday, January 09, 2006

Another reason I counsel NROTC and OCS

If you have certain ideas about the military academies in general. Think again. I have not recommend the USNA since I was a LTJG.

With NROTC and OCS, IMAO, you create a more well-rounded officer, the young man or woman will most likely have a more healthy experience: and you don't have to put up with this crap.
The U.S. Naval Academy has ordered a court-martial for a faculty member who made a "crude" remark in the presence of female midshipmen, even though an investigating officer recommended only administrative action.

The three criminal charges against Lt. Bryan D. Black come as the Annapolis school's superintendent, Vice Adm. Rodney P. Rempt, has announced a "zero-tolerance" campaign to rid the campus of sexual harassment.
Adm. Rempt's anti-sexual-harassment policy includes urging midshipmen and staff to view for the third year straight a play called "Sex Signals." The language is so graphic that Adm. Rempt recommends that children should not attend any performance of the three-day run on campus, starting Monday.

"The two-person show explores how mixed messages, gender role stereotypes and unrealistic fantasies contribute to misunderstandings between the sexes," Adm. Rempt said in a message to staff.
The charging document states that Lt. Black made "a crude remark" in the presence of a female midshipman, Samantha Foxton, about how a battleship sexually arouses him. He suggested how it might arouse her. The remarks created "an intimidating, hostile and offensive working environment."
The three criminal charges are failure to obey a lawful general order or regulation; conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentlemen; and indecent language.

Charles Gittins, Lt. Black's civilian attorney, said Lt. Black was not making sexual advances, but making the kind of remark that is common among sailors. Lt. Black apologized when he realized it offended Midshipmen Foxton, and he thought the issue closed.

"This arises because of criticism of the Naval Academy," Mr. Gittins said. "In a knee-jerk, politically correct reaction, the academy decided to make an example of Lt. Black when in fact it had been completely resolved informally long before. He acknowledged he used rough language and he apologized and believed the matter was closed."

A female lieutenant commander onboard did not think the apology was "sincere enough" and conducted her own investigation. She interviewed all the female midshipmen on the ship and filed a report with the superintendent's office, Mr. Gittins said.

Marine Corps Maj. C.J. Thielemann, who conducted the preliminary investigation, stated in his report that "Lt. Black's actions do not warrant criminal processing." He recommended counseling and a non-punitive letter of caution.
Want to see more of what Vice Admiral Rempt and his staff thinks Midshipmen need to know to become warfighters? Here and here (pg 50-PDF page 56-61).

LT Black's career was done from the accusation and the NPLC. This is all politics and fear folks. I've seen it before, and can smell it from here.

Good luck LT Black. You made the mistake of taking orders to Annapolis. For this you are being sent to Courts Martial. Odds are, for nothing more than was heard on the bridge of USS Antelope (PG-86), USS Callaghan (DDG-994), or the USS Bunker Hill (CG-52) on a regular basis.

Someone please tell me LT Black did something worth a Courts Martial? Is this really it?

Hat tip Skippy-san.

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