Today, Chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) and Chair of the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.Congr) sent a letter to the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard Admiral Karl L. Schultz, calling for a formal review of USCG certified training materials after they learned of an offensive mnemonic device circulating in such material.
DeFazio and Maloney wrote: “Within the USCG accredited captain’s license course offered by ‘Mariners Learning System,’ students are encouraged to use the mnemonic device ‘true virgins make dull company—just add whiskey’ to remember how to calculate compass error. We are sure you will agree that the use of this crude phrase in certification materials approved by the Coast Guard is unacceptable.”
The letter continued: “It is vital that the agency overseeing the maritime industry set a tone of acceptance and inclusion for all of industry to emulate and foster a maritime culture free of discrimination, harassment, or violence based on race, gender or sexual identification.”
In their letter, DeFazio and Maloney requested a formal review of all certification materials used or approved by the USCG to identify and remove any use of this specific phrase or other lewd or inappropriate mnemonic devices, phrases, idioms or expressions. The Chairs requested the review be completed within 90 days and that a summary report and briefing be provided to the Committee.