On Sunday, Rep. Dan Crenshaw, who served five tours overseas serving his country, losing an eye to an IED blast in Afghanistan, took note that the new “woke” recruitment videos released by the U.S. Army had precipitated so much criticism that comments on the videos on YouTube were shut down. He fired, “I hope the message to military leadership is clear: We aren’t going to stand by as our military becomes another institution crippled by woke political correctness. No more critical race theory, no more identity politics, no more political witch hunts. We’ve had enough.”
I hope the message to military leadership is clear: We aren’t going to stand by as our military becomes another institution crippled by woke political correctness.
No more critical race theory, no more identity politics, no more political witch hunts.
We’ve had enough. https://t.co/H0ppSOUp0p
— Dan Crenshaw (@DanCrenshawTX) May 23, 2021
Crenshaw is a retired lieutenant commander with the United States Navy and was formerly a Navy SEAL. According to his campaign website’s “about” section, he “graduated from Tufts University in 2006, where he earned his Naval officer commission through Navy ROTC.” After graduation, he reported immediately to SEAL training, where he excelled, and then deployed to Fallujah, in Iraq — the first of five tours of duty serving his country overseas.
Crenshaw lost his eye on his third deployment. “After six months of combat operations,” Crenshaw’s official biography notes, “Dan was hit by an IED blast during a mission in Helmand province, Afghanistan.” He lost his right eye and his left was badly damaged. After undergoing several surgeries, Crenshaw returned to service, deploying twice more.
The Washington Times reported on Friday, “The Army earlier this week acknowledged that it has cut off the comments section on the videos. Laura DeFrancisco, a spokeswoman for the Army Enterprise Marketing Office, said the decision was made after a ‘significant uptick in negative commentary’ in the comments section of the spots.”
DeFrancisco added that the purpose of the videos was to “close the relatability gap between Gen Z and the Army by offering a rare look at the people behind the uniform,” as Task and Purpose noted. She added, “It is important that the soldiers featured in the campaign reflect the incredible diversity of both the Army and the American public – and not just ethnic diversity, but diversity of influences, upbringings, and experiences. Each soldier in ‘The Calling’ has their own unique background and story to tell. The Army is its people and is made up of soldiers from all walks of life with diverse upbringings and experiences. Providing an honest, unfiltered account of those experiences is essential to this effort.”
One of the recruitment videos has a text reading:
This is the story of a soldier who operates your nation’s Patriot Missile defense systems. It begins in California with a little girl raised by two moms. Although I had a fairly typical childhood — I took ballet, played violin — I also marched for equality.
I like to think I’ve been defending freedom from an early age. When I was six years old, one of my moms had an accident that left her paralyzed. Doctors said she might never walk again. But she tapped into my family’s pride to get back on her feet, eventually standing at the altar to marry my other mom.
With such powerful role models, I finished high school at the top of my class and then attended UC Davis, where I joined a sorority full of other strong women. But as graduation approached, I began feeling like I’d been handed so much in life, a sorority girl stereotype.
Sure, I’d spent my life around inspiring women, but what had I really achieved in my own? One of my sorority sisters was studying abroad in Italy. Another was climbing Mount Everest. I needed my own adventures, my own challenge. And after meeting with an Army recruiter, I found it. A way to prove my inner strength and maybe shatter some stereotypes along the way.