U.S. Air Force bases in Virginia and Texas are planning to host several on-base, LGBT-themed events commemorating “pride month” in the coming weeks.
In a statement provided to The Federalist, Air Force Maj. Carrie Volpe, Joint Base Langley-Eustis’ (JBLE) chief of public affairs, confirmed the Virginia installation has plans to host its second annual “Diversity Equity Inclusion & Accessibility Festival” on June 30, which will include a “Pride informational booth” and “many others exhibits from diverse groups.” A trip to JBLE’s website also reveals that the Air Force base is scheduled to hold additional festivities in celebration of “rainbow” month, including a 5K Rainbow Run on June 15, as well as a Pride Month Paint n’ Sip and LGBTQ Panel to be held on June 23.
All of the events are being spearheaded by the Breaking Barriers Alliance, a JBLE initiative that, according to Volpe, is designed to “cultivate diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I).”
BBA’s “main objective is to foster an organizational culture that promotes a diverse and inclusive environment for members to facilitate open dialogue, recognize and embrace differences to improve mission performance,” Volpe said.
For context, so-called diversity, inclusion, and equity (often abbreviated to DEI) programs are driven by a divisive and poisonous ideology that dismisses merit to discriminate based on characteristics such as skin color and sex. Individuals who qualify for a certain position on their merits, but don’t meet the goal of being more “diverse,” are passed over in favor of those who check whatever box leftists find acceptable.
It’s worth mentioning that the JBLE Breaking Barriers Alliance hosted numerous “guest speakers and performances” during last year’s DE&I Summer Festival. Included on the now-unavailable web page for the event is Harpy Daniels — the now-infamous Navy drag queen recently recruited by the branch to become a “Navy Digital Ambassador.” Brought on to “explore the digital environment to reach a wide range of potential candidates” for military recruitment, Yeoman 2nd Class Joshua Kelley — who goes by the stage name Harpy Daniels and identifies as “nonbinary” — has since been referred to the Navy for investigation for purportedly violating existing military protocols.
Despite his inclusion on the event schedule, Kelley did not participate in the event, according to Volpe.
In addition to JBLE, there are also plans to host a pride parade at Texas’ Laughlin Air Force Base. In a statement provided to The Federalist, Air Force Technical Sergeant Dustin Mullen confirmed that a team of volunteers “under Laughlin’s Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion Committee” are in the process of scheduling such an event for Laughlin airmen, but that “approval for the parade is in coordination and there is [currently] no confirmed time, date, or route.”
When pressed if there will be an age limit for the potential parade, Mullen said that “anyone with base access will be able to attend” should it be held on base. Mullen further claimed that “no drag queen performances have been or will be scheduled” and that “no taxpayer dollars would fund the event,” adding that “funding would be through donations and manpower would be provided by volunteers.”
These revelations come after The Federalist found that Air Force and Space Force commanders were given authorization to use taxpayer money to cover the travel costs for service members seeking to attend the branch’s “pride” events held in Washington, D.C. last week. In a June 1 memo, Marianne Malizia, the director of the Air Force’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion, notified branch commanders that “[s]ervice members or civilian employees” may attend such events “at the unit expense” in order to “maintain and improve professional competency or to improve management of the Department’s functions and activities.”
Other previously scheduled Air Force “pride” events included an all-ages, June 1 drag show at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. Following pressure from Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Mark Milley ultimately ordered base leadership to cancel or relocate the event. The move came after Austin claimed during a March House hearing that “drag shows … are not something that the Department of Defense supports or funds.”
This article has been updated since publication.