For active duty servicemembers, the internet is a strange place. While a place for free exchange of ideas, all too often it seems that it is also a place where aforementioned servicemembers feel they can convey opinions and say things as if they were standing in a room full of their fellow comrades.
This is not the case, as USMC Chief Warrant Officer 2 Kevin Ennet discovered when he posted several things on social media that were ultimately reported to his chain of command.
Showing the world that Marine warrant officers actually exist (but in a very bad way) Ennet responded to an Independence Day-themed post created by the USMC by telling critics of the President of The United States -or more specifically, the president’s desire to include tanks as part of the festivities in Washington DC- to kill themselves.
“Here’s to any complaints about tanks and a [middle finger] to anyone who says anything about PTSD!” Ennett wrote. “Happy 4th. Blow your fingers off, get black out drunk, engage in risky behavior that offends snow flakes. If you die, then you didn’t deserve to live! If you wine, hurry and become a ’22’ statistic today!”
This naturally didn’t go well, and he soon found himself answering questions in front of his chain of command after the Military Sexual Trauma Movement, a not-for-profit group, reported Ennett’s social media post several days later.
According to Task and Purpose, Marine Corps spokesman Capt. Christopher Harrison acknowledged that the Marines are looking into the matter.
“We are aware of a recent social media post made by Chief Warrant Officer 2 Kevin Ennett,” Harrison said. “The command has initiated an investigation into the matter. The Marine Corps’ core values of honor, courage, and commitment demand a high standard of conduct, and we hold our Marines accountable to this standard.”
Ennet later tweeted a formal apology but deleted it some point after he had posted it.
“I made a poor attempt at satire here and it went sideways. As I saw the perceptions, allegations and personal attacks that it stimulated, none of which I anticipated or intended, I realize my inside joke hit the public domain and gave those who wish me harm all the ammo I needed,” Ennett wrote. “But regardless of whether I thought it would be a joke to a small niche or not, it’s the interpretation to the outside world that matters. I work hard to be where I’m at. As I saw the nasty responses, on a day [I] was supposed to be spending with my family, I think about how ashamed of me they would be of my comments. And then I thought about how quickly everything I worked for could evaporate. If I would’ve known that people who have perceived my post that way, I wouldn’t have put it up.”
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