Republican Senator Marsha Blackburn (TN) faces disappointment as her proposed plan to “de-wokeify” the U.S. military died before seeing daylight this week.
Blackburn told Fox news, “The U.S. military must focus on confronting the new ‘axis of evil’, Communist China, Russia, Iran and North Korea. These regimes do not care how woke our military is or what our Soldiers’ pronouns are.”
Blackburn’s legislative intention was to “protect” military children by giving their parents more control over their education, and to steeply hamper Defense Department programs aimed towards “woke” diversity, equity and inclusion by restricting their congressional funding.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) June 17, 2022
One of Blackburn’s proposed amendments, “Stop Experimenting With Military Children,” argued that parents, “not woke teachers,” should have a greater say in their children’s’ education and the curriculum being followed in DoD schools. The other, “Keeping Our Military Focused On Lethal Threats,” would eliminate all DoD priorities aside from “creating the most lethal fighting force on planet Earth.”
Both proposed amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) were voted down during a classified Senate hearing this Wednesday.
In late February of this year, Blackburn spoke at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida. There she said:
“Pentagon leaders should be spending their time learning lessons about their disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan, not promoting critical race theory and wokeism. When our brave men and women are fighting on the battlefield, their children must be protected from government-funded indoctrination. These proposals are not controversial. Democrats should be happy to support them and help refocus the energy and effort at the Defense Department where it belongs — on fighting our adversaries.”
John Kirby, the former Pentagon Spokesperson rebuked these claims, saying that fighting to de-wokeify the military is equivalent to “driving a stake through a straw man.” He also added that ensuring diversity, equity, and inclusion ultimately strengthens the military, not weakens it.
The military has come under scrutiny recently from Republicans in Congress for enacting new diversity and inclusion initiatives, which they say takes away from the military’s core mission of protecting the country.