(CNSNews.com) – Troops stationed at Ford Gordon, Georgia were subjected to an unauthorized lecture on “white privilege” during an Equal Opportunity briefing last year, according to a PowerPoint presentation the Army released last month to Judicial Watch under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
The PowerPoint presentation, which was shown to 400 members of the 67th Signal Battalion on April 2, 2015, defined privilege as “an unearned advantage,” and stated: “Our society attaches privilege to being white and male and heterosexual regardless of your social class.”
“Privilege exists when one group has something of value that is denied to others simply because of the groups they belong to, rather than because of anything they’ve done or failed to do,” the briefing continued.
“Privilege grants the cultural authority to make judgments about others and to have those judgments stick….Privilege means being able to decide who gets taken seriously, receives attention, etc ….
“Privilege is always at someone else’s expense and always exacts a cost… however passive and unconscious, [it] results in suffering and deprivation for someone.”
Under a slide entitled “The luxury of obliviousness,” troops were told that “race privilege gives whites little reason to pay a lot of attention to African Americans or to how white privilege affects them. ‘To be white in America means not having to think about it.’”
“The trouble we’re in can’t be solved unless the ‘privileged’ make the problem of privilege their problem and do something about it,” the slideshow concluded, urging soldiers to “reclaim” words such as “racist”, “patriarchy”, “oppression and dominance”, and “feminism”… “so that we can use them to name and make sense of the truth of what’s going on.”
“We certainly found it shocking,” Judicial Watch senior investigator William Marshall told CNSNews.com. “We’re always on the lookout for any indoctrination material provided to our military personnel. In my view, this is a pretty radical way of looking at race relations.”
In response to an inquiry by CNSNews.com, an Army spokeswoman said that “the slides presented were not authorized.
"The information on the slide presentation was not a part of the original training material distributed to all battalion Equal Opportunity Leaders from the brigade's Equal Opportunity Advisor.
“The presentation shown was altered by the instructor and was not then, nor was it ever a presentation that the Army approved,” Capt. Lindsay Roman, public affairs officer of the 35th Signal Brigade, told CNSNews.com in an email.
She added that the brigade “supports the right of every Soldier, civilian employee and family member to file an Equal Opportunity complaint when experiencing or witnessing unfair treatment based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation and/or national origin.”
When CNSNews.com asked Roman if the instructor had been disciplined for altering the original training material, she replied: “The brigade leadership determined that re-training was the most appropriate course of action, and the instructor received a 40-hour block of instruction.”
“The United States military is in the midst of the longest period of sustained combat in our nation’s history,” Judicial Watch said in a press release.
“It is beyond belief that our military personnel would be required to sit through a left-wing effort at PC brainwashing as the price for defending our country.”