The United States Navy recently released an instructional video that gives sailors insight into the world of proper “gender pronoun etiquette.” This instructional video was seemingly molded off of a children’s television program and has been accused by critics of being overly woke.
The video opens with two speakers who say, “hi! My name is Jony, and I use he/him pronouns,” and “hi My name is Conchy and I use she/her pronouns.”
The instructional video is meant to teach sailors “the importance of using correct pronouns as well as polite etiquette when you may not be sure of someone’s pronouns.”
This video was published to official Navy sources late last month and was later posted by the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service, an official channel for the U.S. military’s media, as an “official U.S. Navy video.”
Online Conservative publication, The Washington Free Beacon, published the video and its entirety on their YouTube page for the general public a few days ago.
You can watch the entirety of the video below:
Numerous public officials and political commentators have condemned the video as media encouraging poor recruiting practices from the U.S. military.
Representative Dan Crenshaw (R-Tx) tweeted, “Here’s an idea, fire everyone in the Navy who puts pronouns in their email signature and focus on how to be better at war. For God’s sake, stop this stupidity.”
Robert O’Neill, the former U.S. Navy Seal who killed Osama Bin Laden, tweeted, “Let me make it simple for the entire @USNavy : Your pronouns are shipmate/shipmates. There. I just saved the taxpayers millions by avoiding ridiculously useless training. Anchors aweigh.”
Defense Columnist at American Defense News, Paul Crespo, extensively reported on the video.
This new video has been compared to previous efforts from the U.S. military to appeal to a “softer” base for recruiting. One measure, in particular, that is being cited is the Emma | The Calling advertisement from the U.S. Army.
The advertisement told the story of a soldier who was inspired by her two mothers to join the military.
Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tx) came out to condemn that advertisement as “woke” and “emasculated” while comparing the U.S. Army advertisement to a military advertisement from Russia.
The U.S. Army advertisement eventually saw its comment section disabled due to the criticism it faced from the public.
A marketing official told the Army Times, “The comments violated our social media policy and were not aligned with Army values. Out of respect for the safety and wellbeing of our soldiers and their families, we have disabled the comments.”
A Reddit thread reacting to the advertisement and the reactions to the ad is still available today.
One user reacted to that advertisement by saying, “People know we accept all walks of life and everything. But HOW are we impacting the country and not wasting tax money is a better PR campaign in my opinion. They want to see results, and how we can massively incite panic, fear, or shutdown our enemies infrastructure from across the globe. Not someone’s individual life or story. People want to see the impact, just as much as diversity.”
Republican leaders in Washington have repeatedly lampooned the Biden DoD’s perceived efforts to make the military more “woke.”
Senators Roger Wicker (R-Mi) and Jim Inhofe (R-Ok) released data back in February from the Department of Defense outlining the amount of money and time spent on retraining soldiers to be more inclusive in their language and actions.
The released data showed that the DoD had spent 5,889,082 hours on training soldiers in; extremism “stand-down,” “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion,” and critical race theory since Biden took office in January 2021.