Conundrum


Hello, Friends –

What a crazy and confusing time it has been. I have found myself puzzled, perplexed and completely lacking sure direction.

First of all – I received word from the National Guard – who was asked by the Governor’s office to review my records. I have copied the letter below – which is addressed directly to the Governor – they couldn’t even bother writing one to me. Please know that names have been omitted or changed to protect the innocent and the stupid!

Dear Governor X:

This letter is in response to your email message on behalf of Joan. Joan was formerly a member of the XXXXX of the XXXX Army National Guard.

Joan alleges that a hostile work environment and discrimination occurred in the XXXX during the years XXXX through XXXX. Contained in the several pages of documentation she provided to my Staff Judge Advocate, she states that the XXX Army National Guard failed to address her issues; and as a result, she voluntarily resigned from the Active Guard and reserve Program.

Joan requests that the XXXX Army National Guard learn from its past mistakes, the mistreatment she received, and change her status to indicate she is retired. I can state with assurance that the XXX National Guard has a much lower tolerance for the kind of workplace discrimnation and harassment alleged by her. The Amry’s Sexual Harassment and Assault Response Program (SHARP) promtes an environment free from harassment of any kind as a means of providing all Soliders a workplace in with they may excel. It is beyond the ability of the XXX Army National Guard to affect Joan’s status. However, she may seek relief through the Army Board for Correction of Military Records. The Legal Assistance Attorney in the Office of Staff Judge Advocate can assist her in the regard.

I appreciate the opportunity to look into this matter…blah blah blah.

Respectfully
A complete ignorant Major General – who should have probably waited until HE was sober before writing this letter!!

This letter was received at my house on 04/03/2013. I sent the original information to the National Guard at the request of the Governor’s office – that was sent to them on November, 5th of 2012. If it had not been for my repeated phone calls – I would have gotten no response at all.

I supplied the JAG with copies of a counseling statement, written by MY supervisor, stating that I am working in a hostile environment. (Thanks – Ready Man – it has come in very handy 🙂 I also supplied them with a copy of the EEO Claim that I filed that was signed by my supervisor, delivered to the commander and never signed or forwarded beyond his desk drawer. However, I am thrilled to learn that I must be totally friggin nuts because – “I can state with assurance that the XXX National Guard has a much lower tolerance for the kind of workplace discrimnation and harassment alleged by her.”

See – that makes me feel so much better that his “assurance” is worth more than solid, documented fact! I continue the fight!! I now have a call back into the Governor’s office, to the staffer listed, who has not yet received or seen a copy of the letter. HMMMMMM interesting! Next step will be to go through one of the larger action groups and go to my media contacts – after I see what the Governor’s office decides to do. I also have some state political contacts that I can use. However, gotta go one step at a time.

In addition to this craziness I interviewed for a new job. I was completely honest and told the truth – which I don’t believe the individual in charge appreciated very much. I just have this thing that I no longer want to maintain silence. Silence breeds shame. I did nothing wrong!

I’m tired of people forgetting to love one another. Let’s just put aside all of the bullshit and start loving one another, respecting one another. We don’t all have to agree on everything – but we can be civil human beings and still disagree. I’m tired of who is right and who is wrong and what is ‘legal’ and what isn’t.

Because of the nature of the job, old parts of my life are an issue. The individual at the top wanted “plausible deniability.” What the hell is that?! So in order to be of “service” I have to be a liar? Don’t they know that it is “silence” that has got us where we are today!! Don’t talk about the bad things, don’t tell anyone what happened, don’t rat anybody out, don’t ruin HIS career. Keep it silent. I am not blaming this individual and he was not mean – he is really a nice person – I understand that I have left him in a conundrum too. I just no longer want to live a lie because it might make someone “uncomfortable.”

It hit me very hard this morning through – the idea of silence. I stood in the shower crying. I think part of why it has hit me so hard is because this is the second anniversary of a friend’s suicide. So to that end I would like to share the following:

Elle G – Newsboys

Thumbs out on a desert road I am told
Leads to nowhere
Any shade is as good as the next
If your shadow doesn’t go there
Week seven, did you really assume
I’d find some solace from the letter in your room?
Next life, could you kindly refrain
From throwing yourself at the mercy of a train?

Silence all, nobody breathe.
How in the world could you just leave?
You promised you would
Silence that evil with good

Hear me out, I have the floor
I’ll give you my tears, I’ll listen more
You promised you would
Overcome evil with good

Maybe this world is a barren place for a soul
Prone to get lost
But heaven still hounds from the smallest sounds
To the cries of the storm-tossed
Week nine: I am writing in the sand
Any little clue that could help me understand
Every whispered secret, every muffled sigh
Every half-truth that was added to a lie

Silence all, nobody move
I’ve got to know now what you hoped to prove
You promised you would
Silence that evil with good

Shame feeds guilt, guilt needs release
You took it to god
You made your peace
And swore that you would
Overcome evil with good

Every old demon playing back the crime
If they needed blood, I’d have gladly given mine
A child of the kingdom; still an invalid
Forgive her, please father
She don’t know what she did

Silence all, now go to sleep
The water’s free, the well is deep
How can we return
That which we never could earn?

God, I long to see her face
We haven’t a hope
Beyond your grace
I know that you will
Overcome evil
For good

Read more at http://www.songmeanings.net/songs/view/81235/#68xfO0gb28y7yyMB.99

I miss ya, Wen.

Joan

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2 Responses to “Conundrum”

  1. jayherron Says:

    Wow Joan…I have been reading this morning-catching up-and am so proud of your bravery and strength and voice for MST vets!!
    You are awesome-and we are blessed to have you standing up with us and for us!
    The poem made me tear up.
    You-being you-and the words you have written since Jan 4 on to date…I want to weep for how good God is to have opened your voice to us!
    PEACE

    • enemyinthewire Says:

      Hi, Jay!!

      I believe we survive for a reason – we find one another for a reason…just like I believe God led me to your site.

      There has to reach a point when they see our faces – hear our stories and start to say…”Something is wrong here!” Sooner or later I believe we will win this war.

      Blessings and peace!

      Joan

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