Rear Admiral Facing Politically Correct Time Bomb

There have been posts here, over the years, discussing the rampant rise of “political correctness”, social engineering, and other bits of stupidity which have been rammed down the throats selectively inserted into the fabric of our military. For the most part, I look at it as it pertains to the Navy. This time, it goes beyond my favorite sea going service. Due to the fact, a number of selected individuals from all branches attend the “school” where the following took place, it has the potential to effect all branches to some degree or another.

“The school where bomb technicians from all branches of the U.S. military learn their craft has been ordered to remove the unofficial motto “Initial Success or Total Failure” from its classroom walls.
Rear Adm. Michael Tillotson told school leaders this month that the motto could be viewed as disrespectful (emphasis mine – ed) to the hundreds of Explosive Ordnance Disposal technicians who have died in the line of duty.
“The motto itself holds potential insensitivities and implies that our fallen and wounded EOD Warriors have somehow failed,” Tillotson, who is based in Norfolk, Va., said in a memo to the Florida school.”

Source: AP article as posted at Military Times

Let me understand this…a senior Navy Officer, a Rear Admiral (O-6/7 depending if “lower” or “upper”) no less, is … oh how shall I put it… emotionally distraught someone might take the meaning and intent of the school’s motto, the wrong way. And heaven forbid we would not want anyones feelings hurt! Why, that would be insensitive, uncouth, unbecoming, non-compassionate, gauche even!!! And we can’t have that!

There is an upside to this, to the extent many current and former (retired, or otherwise back in the civilian world) EOD personnel, have taken exception the our overly sensitive Rear Admiral. You can visit their a href=”″>facebook page. Check em out.

Someone might want to remind the Rear Admiral of the old adage “The Rear Admiral’s rear, is the Vice Admirals vice!”, as this could be a major concern should someone further up the food chain decides Tillotson may have gone just a tad too far. I’m not getting my hopes up, but sometimes things do have a way of working out, and it strikes me that the EOD community, because of the nature of their work, and the well of good will and respect they have earned through out all branches of the military, may prompt this bit of pc insanity to be turned ’round in short order.

If you read the comments at the Military Times article along with those at the facebook site, along with a number of other news articles out there, you will find most, if not all, EOD personnel and or their families, who comment are against this change. And have never been offended or incensed over the motto. It appears the only one to take exception to it, would be our Admiral of the Rear…err, Rear Admiral (sometimes one does get that ass backwards, so to speak). Perhaps if he had followed the wisdom inherent in the motto, this would not have blown up in his face.


Filed under Military, PC or not PC

6 responses to “Rear Admiral Facing Politically Correct Time Bomb

  1. I’m sure there’s a former EOD enlisted who has gone through that school who made LDO, or ‘Seaman to Admiral,’ who has made Flag rank somewhere, who will take notice of this and make a few phone calls to a few friends. Keep the paint buckets handy; you’ll be replacing the motto to its original, proud location.

    • One can only hope! Funny (notice i am not laughing) how stuff like this seems to happen just prior to, or durring “international events of a combative nature”, when our top leadership is busy handling same, and all the asshats are able to do stuff like this unopposed.

      Oh, and thanks for stopping by!

  2. Two items to share:
    1) The Brits still have a humor that predates the onion. On the renaming of ships, where the new names seem to fit this story.
    2) I did a search on “feelngs” at my blog and found many times where I’ve written of the danger from those allegedly protecting the feelings of others (including one about retards and those who retardedly don’t want anyone calling them that). Here’s one excerpt that buttresses your point.

    Of significant note is that which used to be called constructive criticism wound up in the cross-hairs of the heads of our institutions.

    Instead of welcoming various sources of wisdom access to those who need the guidance, the PC crowd constantly concerns itself with how the feelings of the foolhardy might be hurt by those who wish to warn them. Rather than permit unrestricted passage of hard-earned lessons-learned, these “watchdogs” prefer that those whose feelings they claim to be protecting are better off with having their thinking (or unthinking) unfettered. “Let them learn the hard way where naive or ignorant or misguided choices will lead them” would seem to be their slogan.

    It is very hard not to conclude that this admiral of the rear would rather EOD warriors die than get their feelings hurt on his watch.

    • Pascal, I don’t think his action has to do so much with the EOD folks themselves (with the exception of some particular minority or privileged sub section of society victimized group of people), as he was with those who are tangental to the whole thing; family members, visitors, or government officials and or their actors and agents (including all vestiges of the media). These would be the ones who stand the greatest chance of not only not understanding the meaning behind the motto, but of misinterpreting it as well. More directly to the point, the one individual who was most effected by it, at the end of the day, was the Rear Admiral himself.

  3. Yeah, there’s a lot of PC bullshit that’s been rammed down the throats of the military starting in the eighties.

    I went through Basic Training in ’86. In 1998, I was shocked to learn from someone who went through Basic in ’97 that recruits were now being issued ‘stress cards.’ The idea was that any time you felt the Drill Sergeant was being mean to you, rough on you, insensitive to you, etc., you could pull out your stress card and show it to the DI and he had to leave you alone, for at least fifteen minutes if I remember right.

    I am glad I went through Basic before that travesty was forced onto our Drill Instructors. What the hell are all the trainees going to do when they hit real combat? I don’t think any of our enemies will honor a stress card if they are shown that in the middle of battle because some overly sensitive soldier thinks he’s being picked on by the enemy.

    When I went in, the DI’s could scream all kinds of obscenities and insults at ya, with their faces inches away from yours, whenever you ‘screwed the pooch.’ Nowadays, heaven forbid a DI refers to any new trainee by a term that really suits him. Can’t hurt the poor kid’s feelings.

    And here I thought the purpose of Basic Training was to toughen a guy up and make a mean green fightin’ machine out of him. Can’t accomplish that with stress cards.

    Had a good laugh imagining what my DI would have said and done to me if I had interrupted him and told him he was stressing me out. Funny to think about and imagine, but I would never have had the guts to do that. He would have kicked kiwi shoe polish so far up my ass I could have tasted it.

    • My friend, there was social engineering, along with at least the vestiges of political correctness, going on since at least the late 60’s. The most noted and noticeable example would be the infamous “Z” grams; semi-official and official messages sent throughout the Navy by then CNO, Adm Zumwalt. These covered everything from “race relations”, and the implementation of classes to address this, fondly (or not so) referred to as “Watermelon U”, to the opening of almost all career paths (both enlisted and officer) to women. All done in the so call interest of “fairness” (where have we heard that line before), but in reality were little more than an effort to increase the percentages of both minorities and women into the armed service, regardless of individuals from either group meeting all standards for any given career path (physical, intellectual, emotional).

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