For Reasons of Safety, Morale Building Is Now Cancelled

I doubt anyone ever thought they would wake up to see a story condemning a pillow fight gracing the pages of the New York Times. But when that pillow fight occurs at the United States Military Academy at West Point and involves as many as 30 injuries, you can bet it will garner the attention of the liberal media.

I was amazed as anyone to see a story concerning an annual pillow fight at West Point make its way into the national spotlight, first reported by the New York Times and then repeated by Time, CNN and a host of other national news outlets. My astonishment was simply hearing the words “pillow fight” and “West Point” used to describe the same event. Not surprisingly, the media focused on the reports that as many as 30 cadets were injured, including 24 who suffered from concussions. The New York Times referred to the annual event as “The brawl at the publicly funded academy…” and went on to describe online video as showing “crowds of cadets, some wearing body armor as well as helmets, surging together in a central quad, their yells echoing off the stone walls of the surrounding barracks.”

With such attention grabbing titles as “At West Point, Annual Pillow Fight Becomes Weaponized” (N.Y.Times) and “West Point cadets ‘chose to hurt people’ during bloody pillow fight” (N.Y. Post) the writers were obviously outraged that such violent and childish behavior could be allowed to occur at an institution designed to train and educate the future leaders of America’s military. I say “So what!”

FightI watched one of the videos and frankly I would not describe it as bloody and I actually wondered if I was watching the same video the media was referring to. There was what looked like hundreds of screaming cadets, dressed in Army PT gear (some even wearing Hi-Vis safety belts) swinging pillows at each other. Add the body armor and a few helmets that were visible and it looked exactly like what a military pillow fight should look like – if I had ever before thought such a thing existed.

According to the New York Times, the annual pillow fight has occurred at West Point since “at least 1897” and a West Point spokesperson stated “We are conducting appropriate investigations into the causes of the injuries” but claimed there are no plans to stop the tradition for future classes. I doubt the New York Times will have the same definition of appropriate investigations as the U.S. Army and I am glad West Point officials did not immediately cave into public pressure to end a usually harmless tradition.

Of course, I am sure that somewhere down the road this “bloody brawl” will become the subject of a special Congressional investigation, resulting in a DOD manual on “The Proper Execution of Morale Building Mock Battles” and require future cadet classes to confine their battle tools to soft Nerf like items aimed at only the protected torso area. Those who violate the new regulations will risk losing their birthday for a first offense and Christmas for subsequent violations.

Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.

Tom Burrell

Tom Burrell

Tom enlisted in the US Marine Corps Reserves in 1987. Following service in Desert Storm, he transitioned to active duty with the US Coast Guard. In 1997 he left the USCG to pursue a position in conservation & maritime law enforcement. Tom is currently a Captain and he oversees several programs, including his agency investigation unit. He is also a training instructor in several areas including firearms, defensive tactics and first aid/CPR. In 2006 Tom received his Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Harrisburg Area Community College and in 2010 a Bachelor’s Degree from Penn State University.
Tom Burrell
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