Jonn at This Ain’t Hell brought this to my attention. Apparently an Army 1SG received an ARCOM for issuing what amounts to an on-the-spot correction to a bunch of immature punks in uniform for acting unprofessionally on social media.
First Sgt. Katrina Moerk, now the first sergeant of Charlie Company, 741st Military Intelligence Battalion, was browsing a social media network’s community page earlier this year, when she came upon a video that she found offensive and sexist. When she commented as much, several respondents attacked her with insults. Some of these respondents were wearing uniforms in their profile photos, the first sergeant said, so she wrote to them directly.
“I looked them up, introduced myself and explained to them why they were stupid. And I [copied] the director of the Army SHARP program to help their units improve their SHARP training, because it was obviously lacking. And it’s kind of blown up from there,” Moerk said.
The problem to me is not that she addressed an “offensive and sexist” video on social media (I haven’t seen the video, but from what I understand it actually had individuals in uniform in it, and was in bad taste. If anyone has a link, please let me know). Nor do I mind that after being insulted and ostensibly called names by individuals in uniform she issued a reprimand. She was doing her job as a senior NCO. More power to her.
I do have a problem with her bringing this issue to national level attention by pulling in the director of the Army’s SHARP (sexual harassment / assault response) program. I always thought that as NCOs we were supposed to be mature enough to handle disciplinary infractions ourselves. Address the individual. Address the individual’s chain of command. But bring national level attention to what should amount to an on-the-spot correction and then receive an ARCOM for it? Really?
After Jonn posted his thoughts on this, 1SG Moerk decided to add “victim” to her impressive resume, in a post where she reminds us that 1) she has reached her rank in less than 20 years, that 2) she has apparently been called names her entire Army career and 3) she holds that victimhood as a badge of honor, and she will “heroically” stand up to those meanies.
This is my lesson to my Soldiers. THIS is what the hard right looks like. This is what it looks like when you are retaliated against for doing the right thing. Break the internet with my name. Tell everybody ALL about me. I am showing my Soldiers what it means to lead by example, in word AND deed… My Soldiers have my respect, and I have their loyalty. That is earned. Your petty shit, just makes my point. You can’t bully me into believing that your actions are right. You can’t bully me into believing that because I am a female I should be okay with this. You don’t know ME. But… if this is what it takes to keep you from attacking other people trying to do the right thing… Bring it on.
She’s a real hero, this one.
For the record, I respect the fact that she did her job by correcting social media idiot troops. I think she did the right thing. But the fact that she essentially pulled the Pentagon into the drama, instead of handling it at the NCO level, and then received an ARCOM for essentially running to big daddy instead of handling the issue as a senior NCO would is a little ridiculous.
I did post a comment on her blog. Respectfully. Without the usual mouth you all are accustomed to. It’s currently in moderation. Let’s see if she has the balls to approve it. But in case she doesn’t, here it is in its entirety.
Interesting. A few observations here.
1) Maybe I missed it, but no one on This Ain’t Hell called you a “whore,” but it’s instructive that you use this implication to paint yourself as a victim.
2) The vast majority of us in the NCO corps simply issue an on the spot correction and move on with our lives. In the event that the on the spot correction doesn’t do the trick, most of us would bring the issue up with the Soldier’s chain of command. You chose to bring the Army director of SHARP into it? REALLY? Somehow in light of this, your claim that you received an award you weren’t “looking for” rings a little hollow.
3) I commend you for doing your job. There’s no excuse for acting like an asshat, especially in uniform. I commend you for defending Army values. I DON’T commend you for bringing what amounts to a bunch of idiots acting like idiots to national level attention.
4) Giving you an ARCOM for doing what is essentially your job – correcting junior troops – is akin to awarding a Bronze Star for a squared away barracks room. This may not have been your intent. I would hope you didn’t bring Big Army into what is essentially a bunch of ignorant joes being immature with the intention of getting yourself an atta girl from the SECDEF. But that is what happened. I would submit that THIS is what most people really have a problem with.
You imply that people have called you names your entire career. I find this interesting. I certainly didn’t spend as much time in the Army as you have, but I can tell you I NEVER experienced sexual harassment, name-calling or other “offensive” behavior you describe. Never. Maybe I was just lucky. Maybe I just give off the “don’t mess with me” vibe, so no one saw it fit to treat me with disrespect. I was an NCO. I issued plenty of on the spot corrections and negative counselings. I participated in 15-6 investigations. And yet, I never dealt with the type of harassment you describe. Not from my infantry brothers, not from my junior enlisted folks, not from officers with whom I served. I’m sure it happens, but I have my doubts that it’s as endemic as you seem to imply.
By the way, This Ain’t Hell deals with all sorts of military issues – not just Stolen Valor. Do you even understand what Stolen Valor is? Because if you did, there is no way you could glean a stolen valor accusation out of Jonn’s post.
And finally, “the hard right”? Really? This bit makes me believe your beef is political and nothing else. The “hard right” doesn’t generally harass women any more than the “hard left” does. Harassment isn’t endemic to one side of the political aisle or the other. But from your writing, it certainly appears that you not only believe so, but that you have a political axe to grind.
UPDATE: So she did publish my comment on her blog. Props to her for that. I honestly didn’t think she was going to do it.
Also, some folks seem to think that by “hard right” she was referring to taking the hard road, rather than political issues. I re-read her words. To me, it sounds like she was referring to This Ain’t Hell as a “hard right” site politically. Hard to say. I will admit there’s a possibility I misconstrued it, although I really don’t think so.
Third, here’s a video where the 1SG explains the incident and what happened.
In the video she describes the incident in which she was offended by a clip produced by some Soldiers that depicted a new troop in the barracks being shown around by two Soldiers, who stop in front of what is ostensibly a female’s room and refer to her as “Suzie Rottencrotch” – the barracks ho.
I will absolutely agree that making such a video is unacceptable. These idiots were acting like horny 16 year olds in a brothel. They are the reason the Military Social Media Idiots Facebook page was created, frankly. The image of these troglodytes gathered in front of the barracks whore’s door, giggling like puerile dolts makes me want to bitch slap the fuck out of them. Why the hell would you embarrass the uniform in this manner?
I think this new generation of Soldiers – much like the rest of the dumbass generation of newly-minted “adults” don’t understand that the Internet is forever, and that social media is a public venue. They live their lives online, publishing every bowel movement on Twitter and Instagram, Snapchatting their body parts, not thinking about the consequences.
The idiot troops need to learn better. There’s no denying that.
But what really appalled me, and I said as much on TAH, I find it instructive that 1SG Moerk appears more “offended” that they made this video rather than by the fact that there are still females in the barracks who act like doorknobs (everyone gets a turn) for every Joe.
Fact of the matter is that there ARE those women in the barracks. In every barracks I’ve been in!
Every. Single. One.
I remember the day I arrived at DINFOS. I walked up to the third floor of our barracks to drop off my stuff, and there was this couple making out in the stairwell. The female was Air Force, and the male was Army. I walked past them, dropped off my stuff in my room, and changed. When I came back out and walked downstairs, the same Air Force female was in the stairwell, making out… with a different guy!
Moerk doesn’t seem offended by the fact that Suzie Rottencrotches still exist, and that women somehow feel this is the only way to exist in the military.
She’s more offended by the fact that the Soldiers were openly acknowledging it.
She didn’t seem upset that there are female Soldiers whose MO is to gobble every cock in the barracks.
She seemed upset that horny 19 year old guys would openly admit to taking advantage of it.
Do the male Soldiers need some extra… ahem.. instruction? Sure they do. And I guarantee you that SHARP PowerPoint slides aren’t an effective tool to teach them right from wrong. Soporific slides will likely give them a good opportunity for a nap, nothing more.
But to paint these barracks whores as “victims” of these guys? They’re not victims. They should be mature enough not to act like a cum dumpster for every pimple-faced, fresh out of AIT dumbass. They’re just as much at fault as the guys are, and they certainly shouldn’t be treated like poor, innocent victims. I’ve known enough of them to know better.
Stop acting like every man is a rapist, and every woman who chooses to debase herself is a victim.
Start acting like every Soldier matters. Every Soldier can be taught right from wrong. Every Soldier deserves equal treatment.
And by equal, I mean equal – not coddling females and making excuses for their poor behavior, while painting every male as a rapist.
UPDATE #2: It appears I was too kind to 1SG Moerk. After getting a slew of criticism, she decided to simply ban everyone and make her blog private, ostensibly visible only to those who kiss her lily white ass. Guess she’s a coward after all. How embarrassing.
UPDATE #3: I guess the good MSG decided that making her blog private after starting a shitstorm was bad form. It’s no longer private, for those of you who want to read what she’s written. I do encourage you to be respectful – especially if you’re currently serving. As I said above, nothing excuses acting like a disrespectful shitbag in uniform.
UPDATE #4: This woman’s blog is like a strobe light in a bad disco. After posting a self-righteous screed about how she was yet again victimized and was just trying to do her job *sniff*, with a supercilious blurb about how she’s not trying to censor anyone, but merely made her blog private to catch up on comments, she made it private again.
I’m done with this broad. She’s a sad, pouty-lipped, special little snowflake.