Sergeant Major of the Army Michael Grinston is under fire for his tone-deaf social media post on “diversity” for Women’s Equality Day- which just to happened to post an hour before US troops were being killed and wounded in the chaotic and hasty withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Grinston, who is the 16th Sergeant Major of the Army, released the “woke” message at the worst possible time, creating an optics issue that struck a nerve with many personnel, veterans and citizens.
“Diversity is a number – do you have people that don’t look or think like you in the room? Inclusion is listening and valuing those people,” Grinston wrote in a tweet. “#WomensEqualityDay reminds us we’re smarter and more lethal when we come together as an inclusive, cohesive team. Our values demand it.”
The post accompanied what appeared to be photos of female soldiers used for the purpose of demonstrating the grooming standard.
Diversity is a number – do you have people that don’t look or think like you in the room? Inclusion is listening and valuing those people. #WomensEqualityDay reminds us we’re smarter and more lethal when we come together as an inclusive, cohesive team. Our values demand it. pic.twitter.com/b72l2EcIn0— SMA Michael Grinston (@16thSMA) August 26, 2021
US Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) also piggybacked off of Grinston’s post, stating that “Inclusion & Diversity is what makes our [U.S. Army] better.”
Needless to say, the comments drew intense criticism.
“This is what you’re doing today?” replied Patrick Evans.
“You’re smarter and more lethal when you get the smartest and most lethal people,” @Libertas chimed in, “REGARDLESS of their gender religion or skin color. If you purposefully try to include people based on factors that don’t matter, you’re already losing.”
The issue of political correctness and diversity in the military has been a hot-button issue, particularly with servicemembers and those who have completed their service.
In a later response to USMC Sergeant Major Troy Black (who in turn was responding to a statement by USMC Commandant General David Berger), Grinston gave his sympathies for the loss of 12 Marines in Kabul on Thursday.
“Your Marines stood shoulder to shoulder with our soldiers to protect others,” he tweeted. We’ll continue standing next to you in this time of loss. One team.”
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