"The implication that DEI is to blame for a lull in recruitment is intellectually dishonest," said Lorinser. "I need your help getting to Congress to challenge this absurdity."
"If we want a Representative who believes, understands, and supports all Americans and modern data-driven solutions to defense, we're asking constituents to join our effort in de-electing Jack Bergman." — Dr. Bob Lorinser
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WASHINGTON DC — Rep. Jack Bergman (R, Michigan) used a line of rhetorical questioning in a recent hearing to join GOP colleagues in their accusation that diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the armed forces creates division, harms recruitment, and damages the command structure.
"Since Truman's executive order ended segregation in the US military, our armed forces have focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion," said Bob Lorinser, Democratic candidate for Michigan's 1st District. "The term DEI might be new, but the efforts are not. For over 75 years, the US has had the most diverse military force in the world, and by nearly every measure, it's been positive."
Bergman, who doesn't believe in the worth of DEI, asked DoD, Army, Navy, and Air Force panel members if DEI's impact on various personnel issues — readiness, recruitment, and command — has been positive or negative.
They responded one by one. "Positive. Positive. Positive. Definitely positive."
"Their expert answers may have disappointed our Representative, but not American military families," said Lorinser. "Our Representative implied that the advancement of DEI initiatives causes the DoD's recruitment crisis. DEI is a solution, not the problem.
"Bergman's opposition to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the armed forces devalues the abilities of hundreds of thousands of current and future service members."
Recognizing the difference between inequitable recruitment and inclusion, Lorinser says DEI has intrinsic value beyond metrics.
"We have so many defense roles to fill. Rep. Bergman only reiterated combat 'fighting' roles. Yet, over 80% of our DoD jobs are non-combat. In any modern workplace, it's beneficial to celebrate everyone's diversity, promote fairness and justice in their treatment, and provide everyone with a sense of belonging, especially in service to their country."
Bergman joins a panel of GOP colleagues who hammered the DoD's DEI efforts as "wokeness." He said his line of questioning intended to "tee up next year's hearing," where he'll review the numbers to show whether DEI is positive, or "just posturing."
"The implication that DEI is to blame for a lull in recruitment is absurd and intellectually dishonest," said Lorinser.
In response to the GOP's accusation that DEI is "wokeness," the spokesperson for Joint Chiefs Chair Gen. Mark Milley affirmed that "General Milley is an information guy, so he has binders and binders full of information about how the military trains and prepares for combat. Wokeness doesn't fit into that equation. Working together as a fighting unit regardless of your race, color, or gender does."
"We need a Representative who believes, understands, and supports all Americans and modern data-driven solutions to defense," said Lorinser. "I'm running for Congress to de-elect Jack Bergman because we all deserve someone significantly more in touch with the American people."
To join Lorinser's fight to replace Bergman, donate now at BobForMichigan.com.
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