Friday, May 26, 2017

Justice too long Delayed, is Justice Denied!!

As America prepares for the upcoming Memorial Day celebration, I like thousands of other military Veterans and their families will honor the legacies of those who made the ultimate sacrifice, in service of our country. 

As I reflect back on Memorial Day Weekend, 2008, my Spirit remains somber, as I relive the traumatic events surrounding my military tribunal, when I experienced the most egregious violations of my Civil and Human Rights, as an African-Native American, female Naval officer.  

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. believed that “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere” and when you fight against any form of injustice in this country, you will become a target of more egregious injustices; and King made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country as a Civil Rights Leader.  May his legacy live on, and may his Spirit RIP. 

As the Board for Correction of Naval Records (BCNR) finalizes their legal review of my remanded Civil Action case, which has been closed since April 21, 2016, I must beg the question to our current legislative body, “Have we done enough to guarantee both Civil and Human Rights protection of our next generation of military personnel?"

It’s been over a year since Judge Rosemary Collyer made her final ruling on my Civil Action case, remanding it back to the Navy to "consider" my Whistleblower status during the course of their retaliatory actions against me for simply doing my job.  

A year after closing my case, the BCNR continues to delay justice, further amplifying Dr. King's beliefs as well as igniting my passion for doing more for ensuring Human Rights protection of our next generation of military personnel, and American citizens!   

As a survivor of sex and racial discrimination throughout my Naval career, as well as a victim of egregious Civil and Human Rights violations, my efforts to resolve my grievances via the Pentagon’s “equal opportunity” channels were “unequal” at best, which forced me to petition my claims before the United States District Court for the District of Columbia; ultimately seeking fair and equal justice in a higher court. 

On July 1, Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis, will readdress the Pentagon’s policy for “transgender men and women” serving in our Armed Forces.  According to their current policy, “Any discrimination against a service member based on their gender identity is “sex discrimination” and may be addressed through the Department’s “equal opportunity” channels. 

If you encountered an injustice, or experienced a violation of your Civil and/or Human Rights while serving on active duty, and did not receive the remedy you deserve, exercise your Constitutional Right and petition the United States District Court for the District of Columbia; after you have exhausted all legal avenues within the DoD's "equal" employment opportunity channels; for Navy personnel, contact the Naval Personnel Command, or DoD Inspector General.

As our legislative body move forward to establish better laws to protect the equal employment rights of American citizens, I call upon Congress to ensure Human Rights protection of our military personnel, since senior Pentagon officials are hell bent on violating their Civil Rights!!  Their piss-poor management of the military's current policies simply proves that “Injustice anywhere is, in fact, a threat to justice everywhere!!”




1 comment:

Anonymous said...

CDR Penland, when I had the pleasure of serving with you onboard STOUT, I knew then that you were a woman of strength and integrity and you even held the Skipper, XO and the entire Chief Mess feet to the fire when you faced discrimination as the only woman on board the ship. The junior guys were so afraid to approach you but they had a lot of respect for you because you always enforced the Navy's policies on how to treat women, and minorities.

I applaud your courage and commitment for being a voice for those who does not have a voice, especially in the military.

The Navy made a huge mistake when they ignored your grievances and they broke the law when they prosecuted you. Your case establish a landmark for others to come forward to challenge the militarys' injustices and I'm proud to had a chance to know you.