Air Force Academy Tells Cadets to Ditch Gendered Terms Like ‘Mom’ and ‘Dad’

Cadets at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs have been instructed to adopt gender-inclusive language as part of their diversity and inclusion training at the esteemed military institution.

“Use words that include all genders,” the training material, obtained by Fox News, directs. It reminds readers to ask for a person’s preferred gender pronouns and names rather than referring to them by their observable sex.

Recommended substitutes for “you guys,” if a student is addressing a group of people, are gender-neutral terms including “team,” “squaddies,” “folks” and “y’all.”

“Some families are headed by single parents, grandparents, foster parents, two moms, two dads, etc.: consider ‘parent or caregiver’ instead of ‘mom and dad,'” the training says. Romantic relationships have to be stripped of gender connotations, too, with the presentation suggesting the word “partner” over “boyfriend or girlfriend.”

The training suggests that lumping people into a class based on various orientations is offensive and orders students to use “person-centered” language. Instead of “the disabled,” the speaker should say “people with disabilities” and “transgender people” instead of “transgenders.”

Treating races equally by vowing to be “color blind” is not acceptable or sufficient, according to the training, which says that “color conscious,” on the other hand, is the correct language to use instead. It encourages students to distinguish based on race, to “see Color/Patterns” AND VALUE people for their uniqueness.”

The training instructs cadets to adopt gender, racial, and bodily inclusive language.
The training instructs cadets to adopt gender, racial, and bodily inclusive language.

The training claims that the programming will make the country’s military more competitive, as “our leaders have deemed D&I a warfighting imperative.” It is important to “lift others (motivate our teams)” as part of a strategy to develop “warfighters.” In order to foster a “warfighter mentality” among trainees, the commandant feels instructors should prioritize inclusivity, ownership, harmony, and institutional pride, according to the presentation.

The Air Force “develops leaders of character that can lead diverse teams of Airmen and Guardians inclusively, to enhance innovation and win future conflict,” a spokesperson told Fox News. “It is the diversity of Airmen and Guardians coming from all corners of our nation who perform the Department of the Air Force’s hundreds of critical mission sets that make us the best, most innovative Air and Space Forces the world has ever known.”

More from National Review