Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Female Officer Urinates In Male Colleague's Cabin ... Male Gets Court Martial

Lt. Derek de Jong suffered prolonged abuse which included a female colleague actually urinating in his cabin. He reported the behavior to his superiors, who did absolutely nothing. His request for medical leave due to stress and health problems was also denied (he was later diagnosed with a heart condition and excessive stress response). He gave a letter to his commanding officer, left the ship in Florida, and turned himself in to Military Police in Halifax where he faced Court Martial for desertion.

None of his abusers have been investigated, disciplined, or charged. Not even the female who pissed on him. What can you say about this disgusting double standard. Why do men still enlist in the military? The one and only principled officer on this ship was
punished, while the bullies were protected. This man should receive the support of our entire nation and everyone on his ship should be investigated, including the commander who turned a blind eye. 

Pissing on the navy? Send her to the brig!

Addendum 1

Court Martial was intended to prevent soldiers from running in panic during battle and to give commanders the power to control their soldiers. However in this case, Court Martial was used to punish a good soldier. 

Lt. de Jong should be praised, not punished, because he took the only action available to him to expose the unbecoming, unjustified, undisciplined bullying and abusive behavior that became the accepted norm on his ship. If anyone should face Court Martial it is Lt. de Jong's commanding officer for neglect and possible abuse of his position.

Addendum 2, May 11, 2014

A friend of mine gave me some valuable feedback on this opinion piece, which caused me to reflect further on the incident. I can see that the judge in the case was forced to find Lt. de Jong guilty and punish him, since there is no question that he deserted his ship. De Jong's punishment of a severe warning and a $5000 fine amounts to a slap on the wrist for a crime that carries a maximum sentence of life in prison. So the judge effectively sent a clear message that he sympathized with de Jong, and that something was deeply wrong on his ship. I hope they follow through investigating all those involved.

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