Capt. Owen Honors’ Leading Gay Sympathizer Eric Prenger Demands An End To Your Criticism!

Eric Prenger, the gay former naval petty officer who served on the USS Enterprise under Capt. Owen Honors, has not been shy about his support for his ex-boss. “Myself, nor the other gay crew members that I knew of at the time, were ever offended by those videos,” he said this week in an interview. But now he’s going directly to the source of Big Gay criticism over Honors’ “fag”-laced videos, attacking the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, where Aubrey Sarvis, the group’s executive director and a military veteran, called the ousted commander’s behavior like that of “a 19-year-old fraternity boy.” Apparently by criticizing Honors, SLDN is making things bad for Navy gays?

Writing to SLDN in a letter he forwarded to Joshua Green, Prenger says:

This letter is in reference to the SLDN’s recent comments against Capt. Honors previously of the USS ENTERPRISE.

By making statements against him your organization has become a participant in the action that so many gay men and women face every day in the service, harsh and uninformed judgment. In your hasty remarks against Capt. Honors, you forget those videos were for the eyes of USS ENTERPRISE sailors only. You are condemning a man on events that have happened over four years ago.

Every gay man or woman that has joined the military has done so knowing that they weren’t walking into an environment that would be appealing to their sense of delicacy. Sexual orientation aside, every man or woman joining the military does so with the knowledge that the only way to get through is with tough skin. The Servicemembers Legal Defense Network has done so much for the recent repeal of the much hated “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy it is truly a shame to see you take such a biased stance against Capt. Honors.

As a gay man that served onboard the USS ENTERPRISE during both the ’06 and ’07 deployments I was never once offended by Capt. Honors’ choice of humor.

I have begun to make contact with my fellow gay service members who were also on those deployments. We will band together to show our support for Capt. Honors. I ask that you, at this time, retract your statements against Capt. Honors until the full investigation has been completed or you have attempted to discuss this issue and hear the thoughts of those who served him on the ’06 and ’07 deployments.

Prenger continues in his note to Green:

I can’t help to think about the GEICO commercial during all this. The one with the retired drill sergeant acting as a therapist. In all honesty, do Americans really want a military full of men and women who’s first reaction to a harsh word or off-colored joke to go running to mama crying? Do we really want those people as our defense against the ever growing terrorism threat and foreign nationals with a vendetta against America? It seems thats what the media and the higher ups that be wish… Before you know it they’ll be administering sensitivity training on the polite and politically correct way of killing the enemy.

If you have anymore questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. And thank you for taking the time to hear this perspective on an issue that should have never made it this far. The moment this hit the media, the military should have stepped in and handled it, and not allowed the media to blow it out of proportion.

First off, the idea that the military can stop the media from “blow[ing] it out of proportion” is ridiculous. And while Prenger has a point — no, we don’t want a bunch of reactionary and easily offended men and women serving in the armed forces, because hey, that shit is rough — what he continues to ignore is that while he may not take offense, other gay and lesbian sailors certainly do. And they shouldn’t be put in an environment where they feel denigrated because of their sexuality. Repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is one means to end that message. Prohibiting top officers from creating an environment where the use of slurs is accepted, and laughed at, is another.

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  • christopher di spirito

    The question I want to know is, how many times did USS Enterprise under Capt. Owen Honors allow Eric Prenger blow him for his unyielding support?

  • scott ny'er

    Sounds like he has been brainwashed. And thus does not understand what the norm should be. It’s like someone who has been abused. They think it’s ok to get hit or be spoken to in ways that are NOT ok.

  • Daez

    If someone actually got offended by those videos they don’t have thick enough skin to serve in the armed forces to begin with. If you think for a moment that Honors doesn’t play out horribly for both DADT Repeal and openly serving in the military you are dead wrong.

    At the very least, the sailors of the Enterprise will blame the gays because they lost a commander that they liked and respected. At the most, many others in the military will feel the need to walk on egg shells around gays because they won’t want to say something to offend them.

    In the end, gays will seem like delicate little princesses that can’t be offended or they’ll tell. I thought that kind of shit stopped when you were 10. I didn’t think it had a place in the military. Having a bunch of people worried about offending gay people is not great for unit cohesiveness.

  • Lucas

    Daez: I fully agree with you and petty officer Prenger. I think you both hit the nail on the head. Sure, some of the video was in low taste, but none of it was worse than anything you’d see on Family Guy or South Park.

  • Daez

    @Lucas: Not to mention, as evidenced by the videos themselves, they were optional not mandatory.

  • LancerLaw

    The guy is clearly brainwashed – this shit doesn’t fly in other military units of other nations… and the U.S. military is not the best military in the world (not by a long shot), it’s simply the largest.

  • sfsilver

    I watched the video and shocked at how not offensive it was after the all the hype. I’m in agreement with Prenger. I am a proud and vociferous progressive, but I think that the priggish delicate sensibilities of some elements of the liberal and progressive left, of which this “controversy” is a glaring example do us no favors and in a strange way work against the very freedoms that in my mind liberalism and progressive philosophy are supposed to be about.

    The videos were created in an institution with institutionalized homophobia. Instead of demanding Honors’ head on a platter I think this could have been an opportunity to say “We hope that in the new post-DADT armed forces that stronger sensitivity to biased language will become part of the military culture”.

  • Wes

    His teeth are superb.

  • Daez

    @LancerLaw: You are so right. Being the best and being the largest have nothing to do with each other…OH WAIT. We aren’t constantly bailing out the asses of every country that begs us to militarily…OH WAIT. We aren’t the enforcement force of the UN…OH WAIT.

    Perhaps, its the ability of Americans to suck it up and recognize things like freedom of speech without getting super offended that still places us in a better place than the rest of the world.

    How is your EU doing now that Spain had to suck off China for a bail out. The only country currently that can put down the USA is China. China will soon rule the world (at least monetarily).

  • Jaroslaw

    Daez – I love ya, but freedom of speech while on company time doesn’t get it… :)

  • DR

    I agree with his comparison of this situation to the GEICO commercial. This whole thing has been blown out of proportion, and the advocacy groups are loving the attention, whether it’s helping the sailors who serve on the Enterprise or not seems to be of little consideration.

  • Cam

    And again, I get that he found the videos funny. However, would he have found them funny if instead of “Faggot” the words used were deorgatory racial words for Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, etc… or if the video was attacking women.

    This guy thought they were hilarious, because he is still used to gays being the but of jokes. It’s sort of like how the really old gays talk about the good old days because it was more exciting back and how boring it is to just see two guys holding hands on the street.

    Well yeah, because they were somewhat indoctrinated into their 2nd class status. If he can honestly say that the video would have been funny if the “N-Word” had been used instead, then lets hear him say it.

  • WillBFair

    It’s a tough call. We don’t want people thinking we’re so fragile. In fact, we’re the most fun loving pack of butch queens around, who can take a ribbing as well as anyone. And this did occurr before dadt was repealed, in a different atmosphere.
    But we don’t want the f word to pass without commentary. Probably it would’ve been best to censor the guy, and have our lobbying groups explain clearly what the problem is with such language. But the Navy has already made the decision, and gay leadership is totally useless. So we’re back to square one.

  • DR


    Honors was told to stop making these videos and he did. Apparently that wasn’t enough for someone(s), who decided to start this drama.


    Enough with the politically correct group think. Some of us have thick skins and can see juvenile humor for just that and don’t need to see someone hang over it.

  • Spike

    Sometimes the pendulum needs to swing far in the opposite direction in order to find the middle point.

    Or how about . . cause = effect ???

    Are we the American Citizens and taxpayers any less safe because this homophobe has been relieved of duty? Give me an effin break.

  • scott ny'er

    It’s really a situation of the appearance of a leader as well as respect being an issue. Think of a President, Prime Minister, Pope, Minister, CEO, VP, etc. doing something like this. It is not proper. It is disrespectful. And honestly, he/she who does something like this, when in a position of power makes a mockery of themselves, their position and the business/organization they are representing.

    Should he have been fired? Maybe, maybe not. Is he being used to teach others a lesson, probably. But, if I ran a business and a high ranking official did that in my org, I’d fire their ass and make sure it was well known. Now a precedent is set. Act like a fool and you’ll be fired.

  • hephaestion

    Prenger must be an idiot. Standing up for someone who dehumanizes the very soldiers he is in charge of. Wow! Military discipline would fall into chaos with him calling the shots. And you do not create grotesque videos at taxpayer expense. Period.

  • Fitz

    This issue is absurdly complicated, and I think the reason is that there are (at least) 2 sides an an axe to grind. The videos were stupid, and in poor taste, and showed poor leadership. They were not worthy of loosing a post, especially considering his willingness to stop them YEARS ago.

    And there are black people who laughed at “jigaboo” humor, did that make it not offensive? no.

  • John

    Bravo Zulu, Prenger.

  • whatever

    Sounds like a typical conservative loon. That’s what the military does to ya…

  • robert in NYC

    No. 6, LancerLaw, I totally agree with you. This shit wouldn’t be tolerated in the more progressive western countries.

    No. 9, Daez….yeah right! Ten countries with full equality and what do we have? Diddly shit! 5 measly states where married gay couples live in limbo because they’re denied the federal rights of marriage, can’t file joint tax returns and whose marriages in this country aren’t recognized in almost every other state except NY. Another thing, ENDA has not passed and probably won’t with republicans holding the reins. Even our closest ally, the UK as one example has better equality laws than we could imagine.

  • Daez

    @scott ny’er: The problem with your little scenario is Captain Honors was NOT a CO when these were made. He was an XO. They are like third in command. There biggest duty is to bolster the morale of the sailors. If he was making these as a Captain then the argument would be all together different. This would be more comparable to Joe Biden making these videos, and I can completely see Biden doing this.

  • Daez

    @robert in NYC: You can always get on a plane and leave this country if you don’t like it. I get so tired of people bitching about the USA.

    This country isn’t perfect, but if you don’t like it please get the fuck out. Thank you!

    On a more enlightened note, there is no point to ENDA if the majority of gay friendly companies already have non-discrimination policies which include sexual orientation, and the ones that don’t, you don’t really want to work for anyways.

    If gay rights groups would stop fighting over a word and start fighting over the rights that go with that word (full and equal civil unions) the whole damn debate would be over by now and we would have nationwide civil unions, but in typical American fashion, we just can’t stop fighting for everything we want not everything we need.

  • Jaroslaw

    #23 – absolutely NO to separate but equal. Watch “Saving Marriage” the behind the scenes story about the marriage movement in Mass. A lesbian working on it (it wasn’t clear what her role was from the film) but she looked out at all the negative and sometimes downright nasty signs held by the religious right type folk and concluded and I quote: “They don’t object to Gay Marriage, they object to Gay people.” I have never heard it put that way before. And I think it is true. Besides, they are losing, we are getting our rights, slowly. The sky hasn’t fallen in Massachussets after 5 plus years of marriage – notice how that is never mentioned. If there were any adverse affects, they (rel/or conserv) would be all over that like white on rice. Not only that, I didn’t know that many many laws and esp. international treaties would have to be redone – they dont’ mention civil unions – read about comity! I don’t want to make this too long, sometimes the site holds the comment for “moderation”

  • robert in NYC

    Daez, you’re clearly an apologist for the right wing psycho talkers by resorting to foul language when you can’t win an argument. I’ll criticize my country anytime I want and who are you to tell me or anyone else otherwise? Without criticism things don’t get better but remain the same. We are eons behind some western countries who have far more equality than we do. You can’t even admit it.

    As for your nonsense regarding civil unions, the fact of the matter is, the varying forms of civil unions throughout the civilized world are not identical and are not going to be the norm for gay couples anywhere on this planet. You forget, 10 countries once had different versions of these unions and they were abandoned for full civil marriage equality. Its not a question of semantics. Try telling any ethnic group they can’t have access to marriage but have to settle for something of less import.

    In an ideal world, every employer would have a nondiscrimination clause against sexual orientation in their policy manuals. The reality is many don’t, especially small businesses and a number of major corporations don’t, Exxon is one that comes to mind. If you were fired or denied a job because of your sexual orientation, you’d be singing a different tune. Another thing, those gay friendly companies you refer to, they don’t exist in every town in the country and not everyone lives in an urban area where they can find gay friendly employers. Everything in your world is obviously hunky dory. Its not just about employment, gays can face discrimination in the delivery of goods and services, housing, even health care delivery. It goes well beyond employment. Obviously it doesn’t exist in your world, but that’s typical of conservatives, selfish to the bone and to hell with everyone else.

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  • WilliamG

    @scott ny’er: Mate my thoughts exactly. Sad that the poor guy’s behaviour is so clearly that of someone who has been thrift abuse.

    I’m a junior sailor and those videos were awful. Wether one socko wants to defend him or not, the man acknowledges in the videos that people were offended.

    I’m so glad he’s gone :)

  • WilliamG

    Argh. ‘through’ abuse. Damn iPad

  • WilliamG

    @Daez: If he doesn’t like America, shouldnt he be trying to make it better instead of leaving?

  • robert in NYC

    No. 29, WilliamG, thank you!

    No country can make progress unless the people speak up, even if it means criticizing what is wrong with one’s country or government. If Martin Luther King hadn’t criticized his country, there would be no equality for African-Americans, among others. We, as the last group that it is legal to discriminate against must follow his example. Speak up, criticize and if necessary march for our full equality.

  • scott ny'er

    @Daez: My little scenario said high ranking official. Joe Biden is a high ranking official. 3rd in command is a high ranking official. If Dick Cheney or Joe Biden did this, you don’t think America would have problems with this? Puhleese.

    Still unacceptable.

Comments are closed.