Brigadier General Michael Walsh was testifying before a Senate Committee regarding the work in Louisiana following the hurricane in 2005. He was being questioned by Senator Barbara Boxer. Each time he answered her, he respectfully called her ma'am. Senator Boxer seemed to take offense to this and interrupted his responses by requesting that he begin addressing her as Senator rather than ma'am. She said that she worked hard for the title and would prefer he use it.
There are so many things that can be said about this. For instance, her arrogance. She worked hard for the title and feels she's earned the right to be called Senator. I'm not sure that striving to be a Senator is a lofty goal, but okay. Perhaps she did work hard for it and it is responsible to address her as Senator. The Senate is an important part of government, and the office deserves respect. Those sitting in those seats are less than adequate and considering them worthy of respect, is difficult for me to consider. Respect is earned and not freely given. Barbara Boxer is one of those that I don't have much respect for, so I find this more than silly.
Her dressing down of the Brigadier General was uncalled for. She'd have been better served to have provided a heads up to those testifying that she'd prefer to be called Senator rather than ma'am, rather than trying to show him up in a hearing. The term "ma'am" is a term of respect for a higher rank. The military addresses men as "sir" and women as "ma'am". If the woman is outranked by the officer, the officer will address her as "Miss".
Ma'am comes from the term "madam". Apparently, many feel this is a negative term, probably because people tend to think of the woman heading a house of prostitution. However, in it's original form it was meant as "My Lady". I've always used it as a sign of respect for the woman that was speaking. Clients, girlfriends, acquaintences. When they said they'd like something done, or said, my answer has been "Yes ma'am". It's not intended to hurt or degrade anyone. Just giving them their proper respect. Occasionally, I'll even say "Yes'm" using the term that children used when speaking to their mother in the past.
It's not disputed that the liberals don't have much use for the military. Remember during the Clinton years, Hillary hated the military hanging around and she treated them with disrespect. Of course, we all know this by the treatment of General Petraeus when they called him General "Betrayus".
Barbara Boxers treatment of the Brigadier General was that same form of disrespect. Even in the story written, it says that she called the Brigadier General and spoke to him about it to clear the air, so to speak AFTER the hearing...in private. She can call the guy afterwards in private, but apparently isn't capable of preparing in advance of his testimony.
Barbara Boxer showed disrespect to Brigadier General Michael Walsh. She didn't earn any respect in return. Someone really needs to explain to these government people, Senators, staff, Representatives, Secretarys of different cabinets, White House staff and anyone else that draws a paycheck from the people that it's not about them. It's about the country. Boxer proves she hasn't earned the respect. Her office does, but she hasn't earned it.
You're welcome to comment.