One of the many blessings of our American military is that it’s a Constitutional military that has as its Commander in Chief a civilian elected by the American public. (Although history has shown, fairly recently in fact, that the American public sometimes elects bad CinCs.) Because the elected CinC is frequently someone without military experience, a theoretically non-partisan command hierarchy exists to advise him.
For the most part, our military does a decent job of avoiding politics. I’m not always sure how it manages this. For example, the current CinC just announced cuts that will reduce our military to 1930s status — and we know how well that went back then. He did so despite the fact that world events put the lie to his happy peppy statement that the world is entering a time of peace. Our poor military. It gets an order from its CinC — “You must shrink” — and then has to figure out how to do that without destroying itself.
So, how does a Constitutional military handle a command from on high that is stupid, unrealistic and dangerous? I guess it does what our military did: It follows orders, announcing a plan to shrink, one that serious military analysts find very worrisome. Even smart militaries have to do stupid because the rules of them game require them to do so.
Sometimes, though, the military manages to engage in unforced errors that are clearly the result of politicization. This is not party politics, it’s just Beltway, Foggy Bottom stupidity. After all, if you’re going to hang around the Pentagon for a while, you’re going to be infected by the political pandering that makes Washington what it is — a place and entity that nobody likes or respects. In this case, the United States Army could not resist affirmative action’s siren song.
You probably recall reading back in September 2009 that the Army (which was now reporting to the Obama White House) appointed the first woman ever as Command Sergeant Major of the U.S. Army’s Drill Sergeant School (DSS). What made this appointment even more exciting for those in the affirmative action business was the fact that Teresa King wasn’t just female, she was black. It was a two-fer for political correctness.
If Sergeant Major King had been female, black, battle hardened, and brilliant, everything would have been fine and dandy. Unfortunately, King seems to have been more decorative than functional as a Sergeant Major:
Reports from MCC’s on the ground correspondents say King’s suspension from duty was prompted by her heavy drinking, sexual relationship with a lower ranking enlisted soldier, and the fact that at least one of the college degree she listed on her resume is from a schools deemed to be diploma mill.
Almeda College where King lists as the school from which she was granted a Master’s degree in business management, has been closed by legal action in both Florida and Idaho because it was declared a fake institution.
Another embarrassing element of King’s persona – which she has built around a “sergeant no slack” façade — is the fact that in spite of her tough talk, she has never been in a combat zone, which makes gaining the respect of her battle-hardened veteran students difficult at best.
Whoops! One wonders if King willingly went along with the charade that she was competent, or if the heavy drinking is a sign that she was an affirmative action sacrificial lamb who knew she was in over her head.
The problem, of course, is that the decorative Sergeant Major King did not hold a merely decorative position. Unlike today’s European royals, who are meaningless figureheads, King was appointed to an extremely important institution, ones that trains the Army’s backbone: the sergeants. Heck, I’ve watched enough Hollywood movies to know that, without the sergeant drilling, haranguing, fathering (and mothering) the troops, there is no Army (or Marine Corp, or anything else). For the powers that be at the Pentagon to play silly little political games to curry favor with the Obama administration, with the U.S. Military paying the price, is a shocking example of politics. Not partisan politics, just stupid politics.
Sergeant Major King has currently been suspended from duty and the Army is doing its best to keep this story off the front page. Funnily enough, King’s lack of qualifications should help. If King was actually as good as she should have been, the MSM would have been all over a story “proving” that the Army is a racist, sexist organization that never gave the first black, female Command Sergeant Major a chance. However, if the charges against King are true — that she was a shabby paper tiger who never should have gotten the job — the MSM will work tightly with the Army to keep this story out of the public eye. For the Army, the appointment is an embarrassing example of stupid; for the media, it’s a glaring failure in their affirmative action world view.