Temple ROTC Criticized for High Heels

National attention comes after cadets participate in sexual assault awareness event.

It used to be the insult was: “Your mama wears Army boots.” Now, apparently, it’s changed to: “Your Army cadets wear high heels.”

And it’s all because of this:

Cadets and cadre put on their favorite pair of high heels and marched in Temple’s Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event to raise awareness of sexual assault against women. #TUWAM15

Posted by Temple University Army ROTC on Wednesday, April 1, 2015

The “Walk a Mile in her Shoes” event to raise awareness of sexual assault against women took place at the beginning of the month, and on multiple campuses, but it’s only in the last couple of days that stories — and criticism — of the event have surfaced and spread on conservative websites, usually with pictures of Temple ROTC cadets wearing high heels.

“This is a disgrace and disrespectful to the uniform,” said one, typical commenter on the Temple ROTC Facebook page.

The conservative Red State blog says ROTC members understood they were required to participate — and to buy high heels for the event — or else receive a negative evaluation:

I contacted the US Army Cadet Command and asked them about this. I received a response from the command public affairs officer, Mister Mike Johnson. According to Mr. Johnson, ROTC detachments were directed to participate in university activities that focus on reducing sexual assault. No instructions were given on how they were to participate. Participation by cadets was not mandatory and no directive was given to penalize absent cadets. According to Mr. Johnson, only 15 or so cadets at Temple participated as the walk was held during class hours. The Army did not require the purchase of high heels and is looking into that question.

Clearly, the message Cadet Command tells me it sent is not the message that was received in the field.

The Temple ROTC Facebook page has been flooded with dozens of angry comments since the story broke on Monday.