New Air Force Video Hones in on Need for Inclusion and Diversity

 In Afghanistan, Syria, U.S. Army, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy, Iraq

We are a coun­try divid­ed. As Americans, we seem to have for­got­ten that we should all play on the same team. Fortunately, we have the United States Air Force to remind us of that.

The newly released video titled Heritage Today: The Same Mission high­lights the impor­tance of diver­si­ty. One of the more mem­o­rable lines states that, “The day you decide to serve isn’t the day you give up who you are, it’s the day you show who you are and we become stronger for having you in our ranks.” From there, they cover the need for diver­si­ty in back­ground, beliefs, reli­gion and sexual ori­en­ta­tion, and not just tol­er­ance of our trans­gen­dered troops, but accep­tance.

Human con­nec­tion and belong­ing are hall­mark traits of hap­pi­ness and self-worth. By releas­ing this video, the Air Force is making it clear that they not only wel­come diver­si­ty – they long for it. Another mem­o­rable line states that, “If we can have each oth­er’s backs on the front lines, we need to have each oth­er’s backs when we are home.”

The Air Force stood up a spe­cial task force on June 9, 2020, to tackle issues includ­ing race, ethnic and other demo­graph­ic dis­par­i­ties. In a memo pub­lished by public affairs, Brig. Gen. Troy Dunn stated that, “Over the past few weeks, we’ve been work­ing qui­et­ly behind the scenes to tackle these issues. Though we have a long road ahead, I’m really proud of the work this team has done. We want our people to know that we’re stead­fast in our com­mit­ment to build­ing an Air Force cul­ture of diver­si­ty, inclu­sion and belong­ing.”

This video show­cas­es their promise of a more inclu­sive and diverse Air Force.

Words empow­er­ing the sup­port of indi­vid­ual iden­ti­ties and a remem­brance that we all serve the same nation appears to be a point­ed attack on the divi­sive­ness cur­rent­ly tear­ing the coun­try in two. It also hits on the fact that dif­fer­ences actu­al­ly make you stronger, faster and more pow­er­ful. The Air Force video stress­es that its diver­si­ty is its strength, some­thing that seems to have been for­got­ten in the midst of the cur­rent tur­moil.

Another impor­tant take­away is that the video stress­es that although they’ve come a long way, making impres­sive strides – they aren’t there yet and nei­ther are we as a coun­try. But just because we haven’t gotten there, does­n’t mean we stop work­ing toward a more cohe­sive and better union. This is a point that the Air Force does­n’t shy away from making, an admis­sion that con­tin­ued work to ensure inclu­sion and a focus on diver­si­ty only grows, never truly stop­ping improve­ment.

The take­away mes­sage of the video is simple: we are stronger togeth­er because of our dif­fer­ences. As the video ends, it closes by saying that inclu­sion isn’t the enemy of readi­ness, divi­sion is. This is advice that not only other branch­es of ser­vice need to follow – but the coun­try as a whole.

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