Last Monday, Pergelator posted Soldiers concerning a young woman who was denied enlistment into the US Army because she had a tattoo on the back of her neck. Immediately, I thought of all the tattoos gracing the bodily parts of men in the US Navy. (I was an AMS-1 in the USNR 1980-1986.) Curious, I looked up the US Navy policy concerning grooming of sailors.
To my surprise, the young woman mentioned above would not have met US Navy policy. In BUPERS' (Bureau of Personnel's) Grooming Standards (updated online: 5/21/2014 3:26 PM) we are told (I have changed the most relevant part to red text):
7. TATTOOS/BODY ART/BRANDS. Four Criteria will be used to determine whether tattoos/body art/brands are permitted for Navy personnel: content, location, size and cosmetic.
a. Content. Tattoos/body art/brands located anywhere on the body that are prejudicial to good order, discipline, and morale or are of a nature to bring discredit upon the naval service are prohibited. For example, tattoos/body art/brands that are obscene, sexually explicit, and or advocate discrimination based on sex, race, religion, ethnic, or national origin are prohibited. In addition, tattoos/body art/brands that symbolize affiliation with gangs, supremacist or extremist groups, or advocate illegal drug use are prohibited.
b. Location. No tattoos/body art/brands on the head, face, neck, or scalp. The neck area for purposes of this regulation is any portion visible when wearing a crew neck T-shirt or open collar uniform shirt. In addition, otherwise permissible tattoos/body art/brands on the torso area of the body shall not be visible through white uniform clothing.
c. Size. Individual tattoos/body art/brands exposed by wearing a short sleeve uniform shirt shall be no larger in size than the wearer’s hand with fingers extended and joined with the thumb touching the base of the index finger. Pre-existing tattoos/body art/brands that exceed size criteria are waiverable provided they do not violate the content and/or location criteria.
d. Cosmetic. This regulation does not prohibit cosmetic tattooing to correct medical conditions requiring such treatment. For the purpose of this regulation, cosmetic tattooing refers to medical or surgical procedures conducted by licensed, qualified medical personnel.
As I've never had a tattoo, this part of the regs had never come to my attention. While I was at it, I read through the whole chapter and learned that the regs on wearing of earrings had not changed much, as far as I know. (I did not have pierced ears until 15 years later, but I happen to somewhat remember the regs on the wearing of them.) The Grooming Standards tell us:
6. JEWELRY. Conservative jewelry is authorized for all personnel and shall be in good taste while in uniform. Eccentricities or faddishness are not permitted. Jewelry shall not present a safety or FOD (Foreign Object Damage) hazard. Jewelry shall be worn within the following guidelines:
a. Rings. While in uniform, only one ring per hand is authorized, plus a wedding/engagement ring set. Rings are not authorized for wear on thumbs.
(1) Men. Not authorized while in uniform. Additionally, earrings are not authorized in civilian attire when in a duty status or while in/aboard any ship, craft, aircraft, or in any military vehicle or within any base or other place under military jurisdiction, or while participating in any organized military recreational activities. When considered appropriate by the prescribing authority under article 7201.2, earrings may be prohibited while in foreign countries.
(2) Women. One earring per ear (centered on earlobe) may be worn while in uniform. Earrings shall be 4mm - 6mm ball (approximately 1/8 - 1/4 inch), plain with shiny or brushed matte finish, screw on or with posts. Gold for officers/CPOs, and silver for enlisted personnel. Small single pearl earrings are authorized for wear with Dinner and Formal Dress uniforms.
What I did not recall was that the metals were prescribed for officers/CPOs (Chief Petty Officers) and for enlisted personnel. I would have been authorized to wear silver. Note the inversion of the status of gold versus silver in this case, recalling that in general, silver outranks gold in US military insignia. Never having owned Dinner or Formal Dress uniforms, I would never have been able to wear pearl earrings.
For obvious safety reasons, as a mechanic (AMS-1 is Aircraft Mechanic, Structural - Petty Officer First Class), I wore no jewelry while on duty. This is a photo of a rating badge like the one I wore on short-sleeved white uniform shirts.
The carpeting in our bedrooms is being replaced, today (I guess I never got around to posting about it when the rest of the carpeted rooms in our house got new carpet - not wishing to bore everyone to tears?), I have more time for posting. Thus, I'll share with you that I find a recent US Patent & Trademark Office ruling beyond comprehension.
I can understand that folks might not appreciate some names; but, their being disparaging should be a reason for barring issuance of a trademark? Obviously, this must stem from some anti-discrimination law or another, but it is beyond my understanding. I'm wondering if companies that make products such as the line of Tired Old Ass bath products are denied trademarking? The name, after all, disparages elders. Aren't elders protected from discrimination? *wandering off mumbling to myself*
Things have been pretty hectic for me during the past couple of weeks, and will continue in that vein for at least another three weeks; but, that isn't the reason I've fallen behind in visiting Slashdot.org. They are Beta testing a new display that I despise! It is all cutesy-wootsy, but few postings are entirely displayed. One must hit a "more" button to see the whole thing. This is a waste of my time and interest. Fortunately, just now the display that I pulled up was the older version - compact and easily read without hassle. So...I'll catch you up on a few items that they've posted within the past week or two.
It seems that "hero" is applied to far too many people thses days.* However, this guy gets my vote as an authentic hero. From Slashdot.org:
Lest someone believe that the software system for USA's affordable healthcare law exchange implementation is the only game in town, Hunky Husband guided me to this article (excerpt, below). He and I have recently been discussing how few people understand the difficulties of getting complicated systems to work and the length of time that is required for appropriate testing.
WASHINGTON (AP) — After a decade of work and billions of dollars spent, the
modernization of the U.S. air traffic control system is in trouble. The
ambitious and complex technology program dubbed NextGen has encountered
unforeseen difficulties at almost every turn.
The program was promoted as a way to accommodate an anticipated surge in air
travel, reduce fuel consumption and improve safety and efficiency. By shifting
from radar-based navigation and radio communications — technologies rooted in
the first half of the 20th century — to satellite-based navigation and digital
communications, it would handle three times as many planes by 2025, the Federal
Aviation Administration promised.
Planes would fly directly to their destinations using GPS technology instead of following indirect routes to stay within the range of ground stations. They would continually broadcast their exact positions, not only to air traffic controllers, but to other similarly equipped aircraft. For the first time, pilots would be able to see on cockpit displays where they were in relation to other planes. That would enable planes to safely fly closer together, and even shift some of the responsibility for maintaining a safe separation of planes from controllers to pilots. [That statement may be misleading to non-pilots! CC]
But almost nothing has happened as FAA officials anticipated.
Increasing capacity is no longer as urgent as it once seemed. The 1 billion passengers a year the FAA predicted by 2014 has now been shoved back to 2027. Air traffic operations - takeoffs, landings and other procedures - are down 26 percent from their peak in 2000, although chronic congestion at some large airports can slow flights across the country.
Difficulties have cropped up nearly everywhere, from new landing procedures that were impossible for some planes to fly to aircraft-tracking software that misidentified planes. Key initiatives are experiencing delays and are at risk of cost overruns. And the agency still lacks "an executable plan" for bringing NextGen fully online, according to a government watchdog.
"In the early stages, the message seemed to be that NextGen implementation was going to be pretty easy: You're going to flip a switch, you're going to get NextGen, we're going to get capacity gains," said Christopher Oswald, vice president for safety and regulatory affairs at Airports Council International-North America. "It wasn't realistically presented."
Some airline officials, frustrated that they haven't seen promised money-saving benefits, say they want better results before they spend more to equip planes to use NextGen, a step vital to its success.
Lawmakers, too, are frustrated. NextGen has enjoyed broad bipartisan support in Congress, but with the government facing another round of automatic spending cuts, supporters fear the program will be increasingly starved for money.
A few minutes ago I called Hunky Husband to tell him, "Pada snijeg." Replied he, "I know. I'm at the junior high school." It turns out that he had encountered the snow on his way to Wichita about 3.5 hours ago. Being on the computer, I had been unconscious to the real world from the time that he had left and had no clue that so much time had elapsed. Here are the photos to prove that we are getting snow (the white streaks) this early in the season. We, in flatland, are unused to having snow before Halloween!
The following photo and excerpt are from:
Photo by ESA/NASA
I find myself conflicted; the image is lovely, but then, that’s an intercontinental ballistic missile [ICBM] you’re seeing there. Yikes. I’ll note that as far as I can tell, the arc of the missile was much lower than the orbit of the space station, and the astronauts were in no danger from this launch.
The news reminds me of a phenomenon that I observed late one (dark) night from a motel's parking lot in Lancaster, California. (I was working at Edwards AFB). Slightly to the west of me was a rising pillar of light. It seemed to be a plasma of some sort that radiated deep blues and violet hues in a lazy sinuous fashion - with slight coruscation at one location. As, next door to the motel was a lighted ball field, I at first thought the phenomenon to be produced by fireworks. I quickly decided that I was seeing the trail of a rocket launched from Vandenberg AFB. The next day I learned that a Minuteman had been tested. (I would have known sooner had I merely watched the news on TV; but, having no TV at home, turning one on didn't occur to me!)
Much is written each 9/11 anniversary, about where we were and what we were doing when we observed/learned of the terrorist attack that killed thousands of people while demolishing the twin towers of the World Trade Center and a portion of the Pentagon building, and while witnesssing (mostly posthumously) the courage of some of the innocent passengers on an airplane flight over Pennsylvania. It got me to thinking of other internationally reported events that stand out in my own mind.
4/12/1945 - President Franklin Delano Roosevelt dies - The event is announced on the public address system while I am in my 2nd grade homeroom class.
11/22/1963 - President John Fitzgerald Kennedy is assassinated - A friend calls to see if I've heard the news (death yet to be announced) while I am baking and decorating cut-out sugar cookies.
2/7/1986 - Maria Corazon Sumulong Cojuangco-Aquino is elected President of the Philippines - A newscast on NPR informs me of the event as I lie in bed, having just awakened.
10/17/1989 - The Loma Prieta earthquake kills 63 people in the San Francisco, California area - I experience the event while driving from my worksite to my apartment in Sunnyvale, California. I am sitting at a red traffic signal, just across a freeway from the apartment complex - about equidistant from the site of a bridge collapse and the epicenter of the 6.9 on the Richter Scale (surface-wave magnitude 7.1) event. Nearly 4,000 people are injured and thousands left homeless.
11/9/1989 - The Berlin Wall "falls" - A newscast on NPR informs me of the event as I am driving from my worksite in Sunnyvale, California to the San Jose, California airport to enable me to spend a weekend at my home in Albuquerque, New Mexico. I slow down to compensate for my decreased vision due to the tears in my eyes. A tiny piece of the wall will be gifted to Hunky Husband, mounted on a photo of a rent in the wall taken by HH's brother-in-law for a news agency.
1/17/1991 - Operation Desert Storm is launched - A newscast on NPR informs me of the event as I am in the parking lot, leaving work for the day.
9/11/2001 - Terrorist attack against the USA takes place - Shortly after 3:00pm (local time) as Hunky Husband, Elder Brother, the late Expert Seamstress, and I am returning to our motel from a day of birding in the Tampa, Florida area when I note that flags are flying at half-mast. Elder Brother, who is driving our rental car, asks if I wish him to switch on the radio. When I affirmed the wish, we hear that the Pentagon has been attacked. It is only minutes later that we learn of the full extend of the tragedy that had occurred that day.
If my mind is half-way functional today, it was recently ruled that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had not the jurisdiction to regulate e-cigarettes. Anyone want to bet on what happens concerning FDA attempts to regulate electronic applications? The question is brought to mind by another Slashdot.org posting (below). BTW: they ban candy cigarette sales to minors, but a 12-year-old can buy an e-cig??? An e-cig is considered, by some, to be a gateway drug.
I throw in a non-sequitur, just for fun*, also from Slashdot.org:
* I point out, as part of the "fun", that my Hunky Husband is 50% Serbian.