Two-star Major General Ryan Gonsalves was denied a promotion to three-star because he allegedly called a female congressional staffer “sweetheart” in a meeting last year. Welcome to the United States, where it's more important for our military leaders to be politically correct than to protect our freedom.
It stems from a meeting in October 2016 between Gonsalves and office staff with Rep. Jim Langevin (D-Rhode Island) at Fort Carson. According to a report, Gonsalves called a female staffer "sweetheart," and commented on her age.
Gonsalves also told the staffer to take notes "since she was a Democrat and did not believe in funding the military," according to a report from the Army Inspector General.
Other staffers called Gonsalves' comments sexist, though others stood up for him as a professional. A complaint wasn't immediately filed about the exchange. However, Stars and Stripes reports that an anonymous complaint to the Army IG was made after reports surfaced that Gonsalves was up for a promotion to three-star general.
Gonsalves’s actions are said to have violated the Army Command Policy which requires members to treat others with “dignity and respect.”
Up until August, the general led the 4th Infantry Division but has since been serving as a special assistant to the commanding general in Fort Hood, Texas, according to Stars and Stripes. He was nominated for the promotion in July but after an anonymous complaint made its way to the Inspector General, it was withdrawn.
Stars and Stripes adds:
At one point during the meeting, the female staffer passed a note to a colleague that read: “Did this guy really just call me sweetheart?,” the report states.
Accounts of the meeting differed, however. Some people in attendance defended Gonsalves, saying he acted professionally, though their names and positions were redacted from the report.
The IG report notes that although Gonsalves testified he never used the term in that meeting, “[T]he evidence did not support his recollection.”
Real important stuff for our military to be dealing with.