Monday, January 18, 2010

Where is CMDCM Lombardi?

You want indications and warnings out there that there are problems with deckplate leadership .... how every little problem an average LPO should be able to handle in 15 seconds .... but can't? Can't because the LPO has no confidence in their leadership giving them the top-cover they need?

Always look to the fundamentals and see if they are being done, then worry about the finer details ... and if you want to get into deeper problems if the fundamentals are not being done, ask the second and third level questions as to why people are looking the other way and not enforcing fundamentals.

BTW, this isn't the sea duty, warfighter Chief's Mess problem. This problem goes straight to the CNO and MCPON.

You should see some of the leaders in this email chain. I feel genuinely sad that this even made it to their level. I am sad that the reason that it has made it to this level is fear.

Warfighters that will enter a room on fire to rescue you - will dive into a cold North Atlantic to save your life - will storm some mud hut simply because they are ordered to - but are scared of telling a Sailor to get a haircut.

Sent: Monday, [REDACTED]
To: *Distribution- CPO Mess

Passing along guidance IRT "dreadlocks".


-----Original Message-----
Sent: Sunday, January 10, 2010 14:22


A question was posed to the UMO regarding a specific hairstyle that I thought you could all benefit from.

The string starts at the bottom so you can get a feel for what was asked, and then to FORCM [REDACTED] and on to and a return email from[REDACTED].


-----Original Message-----
Sent: Thursday, January 07, 2010 18:15

BLUF: Current uniform grooming policy prohibits dreadlocks and twists hairstyles. The following excerpt form uniform regulations chapter 2, section 2 (Grooming) for women apply: "Haircuts and styles shall present a balanced appearance. Lopsided and extremely asymmetrical styles are not authorized. Ponytails, pigtails, widely spaced individual hanging
locks, and braids which protrude from the head, are not authorized. Multiple braids are authorized. Braided hairstyles shall be conservative and conform to the guidelines listed herein. When a hairstyle of multiple braids is worn, braids shall be of uniform dimension, small in diameter (approx. 1/4 inch), and tightly interwoven to present a neat, professional, well groomed appearance."

Once and awhile we (UMO) will get questions on dreadlocks and twists and in turn refer to the uniform regs requirements for female hairstyles. Specifically, we emphasize balanced appearance, not to be lopsided or asymmetrical, (braids must be small and tightly interwoven (no locks or twists) and project a professional appearance.

I hope this information clears any mis-perception of Navy policy regarding dreadlocks. Please let me know if you require addition information. Thanks.

Navy Total Force, [REDACTED]
Head, Navy Uniform Matters
Comm (703)614-[REDACTED], DSN 224-[REDACTED]

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Tuesday, January 05, 2010 2:19 PM

FYI, if the Navy has NOT addressed "dreadlocks" as a hairstyle, maybe it's time we do once and for all. This is common complaint throughout the Fleet.


Has the Navy accepted dreadlocks as an acceptable hairstyle? Is dreadlocks considered multiple braided hairstyle?

One of my female Sailors recently reported. This is her first duty station. She wears what has been referred to as dreadlocks; she's had locks most of her life. She states that her hair was not an issue at RTC nor was it an issue in "A" school. I'm being told that the RDCs are allowing females to wear dreadlocks; in fact some female RDC's are supposing wearing dreadlocks also.

The uniform regulations does not identify "dreadlocks" as an hairstyle. Don't know if this was done purposefully or not. The regulations does authorize multiple braided hairstyles. It states "When a hairstyle of multiple braids is worn, braids shall be of uniform dimension, small in diameter (approx 1/4 inch), and tightly interwoven to present a neat, professional, well groomed appearance"... Her locks does not hamper her ability to wear headgear correctly, is within the correct dimensions, looks neat and well groomed (professional is what is in question).

I want to get this information out to my Chiefs and our Sailors. This Sailor claims that if she would have known that she had to cut her hair she would not have enlisted. Right now the Sailor is being questioned practically everywhere she goes about her unauthorized hairstyle and is starting to feel harassed.

The Navy needs to address the dreadlocks it or is it not authorized?

OBTW, this is the third Sailor with similar story (first I've been informed of) and I've told her Chief not to have her cut her hair until I tell him.

Should we even talk about some of the finger nails our there?

Sad - this small percentage make it so much more difficult for the vast majority of outstanding women Sailors we have out there.

Maybe I am being too rough on the CNO and MCPON - again. They have a lot on their plate and a very difficult job. Maybe the problem is that we do not have the right attitude among our female leaders .... but by saying that I violate one of my own pet peeves ... in the Navy we just have Sailors and Leaders.

Well, I believe that and others do as well - though I know the senior leadership acts differently. Therefore .... CNO and MCPON again.

Always go with your first instincts.

Hat tip Goat Locker Spy.


Grumpy Old Ham said...

"<span>Always go with your first instincts."</span>

Indeed.  My first instinct is that this situation most likely creates the perfect Diversity storm, too.  I'd bet a good chunk of next month's retirement pay that the sailor(s) sporting dreadlocks are members of multiple protected classes.  Any leader with the temerity to question said hairstyle would have the Diversity bullies all over him (or her) like, as one of my favorite Marines liked to phrase it, "a hobo on a ham sandwich".

YNSN said...

Generally, a Male Leader takes their risks in telling any female that works for him that the $60 hair cut she just got is out of regs, or the $40 nails she just had done.  But, me?  Damn the torpedo's.

Leadership was deligated to the new female Sailor by the Chief by listening to her say "At blah, blah, blah we were allowed to have dreadlocks."  I would have told her she was not in A-school or Boot. She is in the damn Fleet.  Sorry your trainers set you up for failure.  Cut your hair or request to get out.  You know why dreadlocks are not allowed?  Because your hair is a giant fire trap. 

That Sailor played her Chain of Command.  She knew what she was doing and she did it well.  That's common, very common. 

My last cruise... I loved it.  But, mentally it was one of the thoughest things I've ever endured.  I had a chief that was VERY hands off.  and that identified with two other Sailors that I would say were not as squared away as other Sailors in my office.  Things were not running well and the only way to get attention to them was to create what I called a "sh*t storm".  Where Chief would come in with the LPO and a whole bunch of yelling and unkind words would ensue and I would have to stand my ground, say my piece and hope that once the dust settled that at least something would change.  More often than not, it did.

If I was this girls Chief, I would do the same thing.  I'd throw down the gauntlet, order her to cut her hair and wait for the sh*t storm to come.  You can't loose in that situation.  In the worst case you become a myrter.  I'm a Chief, they can't bust me down and I can do over 20 years to reitre.  What do I have to loose?  One thing I would be interested to know...

A young Sailor who would manipulate her CoC with her hair, I would suspect that she would also be willing to take even more unscrupulous acts to 'punish' those who made her do something she didn't want to do.  I've seen it before where a female Sailor would claim she was hit, sexually assaulted, something so bad that she automatically gets the benefit of the doubt.  Now, I can see why a Chief would hesitiate in a circumstance where they could be treatened by that. 

Oh, and deadlocks being not allowed... THAT IS ON THE ADVANCEMENT EXAMS--BASIC MILITARY REQUIREMENT!!!! It is common knowledge that it is not allowed and that if it was changed there would be a NAVADMIN to accompany it.

I had 3 or 4 females similiar to this at my last Command.  This sort of manipulation is NOT uncommon.  Nor, in all hoensty, is it religated to just the females.  Guys do it as well, just in a differnt 'flavor'.

LT B said...

Hey, female genitalia makes you special.  And being a minority is EXTRA special.  Rules do NOT apply and all males, especially White males should cower and not enforce rules, because as I have seen first hand, the leadership will NOT support the truth, or the rules.  Cowardice is being pushed down from above and out of DC.  Every MCPON says they want deckplate leadership.  Equine excrement!  Talk is cheap.  Back the regs.

Jimmy T said...

</p><p><span><span><span>Your comment here: “Maybe I am being too rough on the CNO and MCPON - again.” Makes me think of what happened in New York City under the Giuliani administration. When he took the Mayoral seat he commanded the Police force to go after J-walkers and Litter bugs, the homeless bum’s and the street prostitutes.<span>  </span>When they paid attention to all these “little” things, the bigger things like Murder, Rape and Robbery all went down as well.<span>  </span>New York today has a lower violent crime rate then many cities much smaller in both area and population (Philly being one which I live near to).<span>  </span>It seems to me if Senior Leadership took an active role in things this small, than a lot of the bigger problems take care of themselves.</span></span></span>
</p><p><span><span><span>BT: Jimmy T sends.</span></span></span></p>

Anonymous said...

Late last year, there was an attempt to punish both pregnant soldiers and the men who impregnated them.  There was a predictable uproar from certain women Senators and civilian feminists, but not one peep from (senior) women officers who constantly say that all they want is equal standards, especially with that sort of issue.  So, why is anyone surprised about the lack of support or leadership on hairstyles.  The fact that this much time and effort is being devoted to trivia proves clearly just how inefficient the coed fleet really is.

Anthony Mirvish said...

Guest was me.

sobersubmrnr said...

The only reason this is an issue is because her leadership resembles her genitalia. If she were a male, this issue would be have been resolved ASAP with minimal fuss. Things like this are why I am so opposed to having females in combat units. This lack of discipline and fear of taking charge of females is dangerous.

DG said...

Just to play devil's advocate a bit - most folks would hesitate if someone with a hairstyle you thought was unsatisfactory told you that not only was it acceptable at Recruit Training, but that RDCs, in fact, had that hairstyle. It would give me pause, because the obvious assumption is that the most locked-on folks in the Navy are the RDCs - they are supposed to be the exemplars of military bearing. If you didn't go through recruit training (most officers) its understandable how you wouldn't see this, but from the enlisted side, its very strange. 

If this is screwed up, it needs to be fixed in recruit training. Also, how about some of that much vaunted Chief's initiation process be redirected more towards military bearing, naval tradition, etc? I don't think a Marine GYSGT would need to pass a query like onward and upwards. 

cdrsalamander said...

You are exactly right - and I wish we had more leaders with your clear and direct manner.  

If you are right and are the one who is calm and not raising your voice, you will win every time.  

Hair isn't new or just a female issue - why we are having this problem still amazes me.   

You also bring up the point of "Not approved for shipboard use."  A lot of stuff people use on their hair would not respond well to a flash fire.  Braids and moving equipment don't go together well either.  

ICC said...

How are we suppose to get grooming standards right when we can't even get the simple backpack policy right.  Personally, I think all females who enter the military should buzz their hair similar to their male counterparts, equality right?   As a Navy Chief I have no problem putting my foot in some A$$ if a Sailor is jacked up. We are here to maintain/enforce the standards that are in place.  Unfortunately, many do not know nor understand what the standards communicate.  My answer to them, friggin' read the regs vice playing Mafia Wars.   

DeltaBravo said...

Hey mon, don' make me give up de dreds.  Wos dis Naveee coming to?

I think "firetrap" says it all.  Hair caught in equipment pulling off scalp.... 

I'd love to know the recruiter who saw the dreds and didn't mention they weren't to regs so they could get their two-fer on this one!

MA2 said...

Jimmy T,
    I could not agree more. It is like pulling teeth on the ship to get the PO1s and above to address simple uniform and grooming issues. The most action the non-security folks want to take is send (not even bring) a sailor down to Security to get looked at. Who knows what story your sailor is going to tell us when they get there. I think its high time the little details started getting focused on. Some cut and dry uniform reg's wouldnt be a bad start. Its so hard to read the regs, much less the weekly message that allows or denies a specific item. We do what we can, but a little support from the rest of the fleet to take some weight off us hard working MA's is welcome.

John said...

Grumpy nailed it.

This is the sort of crap that grows when "diversity" is the single focus goal from top management.

And, the audacity of Phib to post something like this on sacred day honoring his Holiness Dr. Martin Luther King (junior) certainly smacks of RACISM deserving a few cycles in re-education camps for those insufficiently sensitive to the glowing benefits of celebrating "diversity."

Just more PC crap-- the same sort of PC command climate that allowed MAJ Hassan to engage in jihad at Fort Hood. 

The number of GOs/FOs with female genitalia is truly amazing.

cdrsalamander said...

For the record - I am not that clever.  It had nothing to do with the MLK Holiday.

It is a day on, not a day off.  

Riverrunner said...

I can't figure out why the CMC or LCPO that started started this didn't just say cut your hair.  The uniform regs spells it out....and if you can't figure out the uniform regs, the Uniform Board FAQ page says real clear for idjits Dreadlocks are NOT the instruction and stop passing the buck...