In the June 7 speech, Space Force leader Lt. Gen. DeAnn Burt (pictured above) complained that U.S. states have passed more than 400 “anti-LGBTQ-plus laws,” which she said is “dangerous” for service members and their families. She also claimed it hurts “readiness,” too, referring to the military’s ability to fight and win wars.
Farther down in her speech, the Space Force general blamed those state laws for her decision to pass over some personnel for a higher rank. She used promotion to squadron commander as an example. “If a good match for a job does not feel safe being themselves and performing at their highest potential at a given location,” she said, “I am compelled to consider a different candidate and perhaps less qualified.”
An officer of the U.S. Air Force since the 1990s, General Burt rose to the rank of major general in 2021 before she was promoted to lieutenant general in 2022 in the newly-created Space Force, where she is now chief operations officer.
Reacting to the general’s speech, Air Force veteran Dr. Gordon Klingenschmitt tells AFN the Space Force commander violated the Hatch Act because she discussed political issues in uniform.
“She should not be advocating for red states to change their policies. She should not be saying we need more genital mutilation surgery for children. That's not her job,” he argues. “It's really up to the legislatures of those states to determine what is the best law for those states.”
DAA budget addresses DEI cuts
Elaine Donnelly, who leads the Center for Military Readiness, tells AFN Republicans in the U.S. House are attempting to starve the Pentagon's wokeism by gutting its funding. Several amendments have been introduced to the Defense Authorization Act that defund DEI programs and offices.
The votes on those amendments are scheduled for Wednesday, and Donnelly predicts they have a "very good chance" of passing with bi-partisan support.
"I think the American people have become aware of just how far the military is woke," she says.
Gen. Burt’s comments were included in a Military Times article, which reported on the Pentagon’s “diversity and inclusion” push, and by a New York Post article that said her comments were criticized on social media by Ron DeSantis supporters.
The story by the Military Times acknowledged recruiting shortfalls in every military branch except the Marines. Despite recruitment woes, the article quotes a Pentagon official who insisted young adults are being drawn to the armed forces by “diversity and inclusion” promotions, such as the Pride event.
The New York Post article said her comments were noticed by a Twitter account supporting Ron DeSantis' presidential campaign. It predicted the “woke insanity” at the Pentagon would end on his first day as president.