WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Local Lawmakers Search For Best Way To Combat Sexual Harassment In Military

Play associated audio

Lawmakers in the region are united in the desire to combat sexual harassment in the military, but they have yet to find a legislative fix to the problem.

The U.S. military has rapidly evolved in recent years—gays and lesbians can now serve openly, and women can now officially do what they've been doing unofficially for years: join men in forward combat theaters. But recent reports of a culture of sexual harassment are highlighting what may be a byproduct of that quick transition, according to northern Virginia Democrat Gerry Connolly.

"I think we're still in a transition in our armed forces in a sense  with respect to gender integration and gender hierarchy within that integration. And obviously that's still a work in progress," he says.

Lawmakers were outraged this week to learn of the arrest of Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski in Arlington County, Virginia for groping a woman. Before his arrest he was in charge of Air Force sexual harassment prevention programs. While Virginia Republican Rob Wittman wants to do all he can to end sexual harassment in the armed forces, he says this is an issue the military needs to address internally.

"I think they need to redouble their efforts to understand what the scope of the issue is and to make sure that they re out there addressing it," he says.

Some lawmakers want to provide more lawyers to sexual assault victims while others want to remove sexual cases from the ordinary chain of command. But Northern Virginia Democrat Jim Moran says he's confident in the military s top brass.

We know what this is and we're going to change it. President Obama is absolutely committed, as is Secretary Hagel. And every four-star I've talked to, they get almost emotional about this. They want none of this," he says.

The debate is only heating up after the Pentagon reported there were more than 70 sexual assaults a day last year.

NPR

'Deadpool' Is a Potty-Mouthed Splatterfest. A Really Funny One

NPR film critic Bob Mondello says Deadpool goes in deep on its R rating — and has plenty of fun doing it.
NPR

Buy Crop Insurance, Double Your Money

The nation's crop insurance program is really a lottery, says one economist. And it's rigged so that farmers win. In fact, farmers typically get back double the money they pay for premiums.
WAMU 88.5

The Politics Hour - February 12, 2016

D.C. Council Member Yvette Alexander (D-Ward 7) joins Kojo and Tom Sherwood to chat about her upcoming fight for re-election.

NPR

Do You Like Me? Swiping Leads To Spike In Online Dating For Young Adults

A study by the Pew Research Center finds the use of online dating sites has mushroomed in the past few years, particularly among 18- to 24-year-olds.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.