By Debbie Gregory.
In today’s sexual misconduct climate, those in a position of power should choose their words carefully.
This is a lesson that Maj. Gen. Ryan Gonsalves has learned the hard way, even though the offense he has been charged with occurred during an October 2016 meeting at Fort Carson, Colorado.
Gonsalves’ nomination for a third star is in limbo after it was determined that he disrespected one of Congressman Jim Langevin’s female staff members by calling her “sweetheart.” Gonsalves’ is also accused of making sarcastic and unprofessional remarks. At least ten people besides the female staffer were present.
Gonsalves apparently took issue with the female congressional staffer’s young age and her political affiliation. A male staffer who was present described Gonsalves’remarks as “sexist, inappropriate and unprofessional.”
The Army Command Policy requires treating others with “dignity and respect,” and the Army Inspector General has recommended that appropriate action be taken, which includes formally withdrawing Gonsalves’ nomination.
Gonsalves, who was considered to be in contention to serve as the next head of U.S. Army Europe, is now serving as a “special assistant to the commanding general, III Corps.” The Army declined to detail what the future holds for the major general.
Although Gonsalves testified that he did not refer to (the female staffer) as ‘sweetheart’ during the meeting, the evidence did not support his recollection,” according to the Inspector General’s report.