The Navy captain at the center of an investigation of crude videos shown to sailors onboard an aircraft carrier two years ago has been relieved of his command.
The videos, in which he appears and which included anti-gay slurs and sexual innuendo, showed extremely poor judgment by Capt. Owen Honors, said Adm. John C. Harvey Jr., commander of the U.S. Fleet Forces.
"While Capt. Honors' performance as commanding officer of USS Enterprise has been without incident, his profound lack of good judgment and professionalism while previously serving as executive officer on Enterprise calls into question his character and completely undermines his credibility to continue to serve effectively in command," Adm. Harvey said.
Who should be held responsible for the breakdown in discipline on the USS Enterprise? Tommy Sears, executive director for the Center for Military Readiness talks about this and more, on CBN Newswatch, Jan. 4, following this report.
Now, when the USS Enterprise sets sail for the Middle East in two weeks, its commander will not be on board.
Two more video clips, leaked to The Virginian-Pilot, show more crude behavior and offensive language, taped during the ships weekly movie night in 2006 and 2007.
The videos are full of anti-homosexual slurs, sexual inuendo and profanity and were shown to crew members on active duty.
Still, Honors is getting a lot of support on the ship's Facebook page. One post claims Honors was "the best XO I ever had." Another called his sacking "political correctness run amok."
But the Navy is very clear on the behavior it expects from its officers. They are to "abide by an uncompromising code of integrity" and "exhibit the highest degree of moral character."
"When you see something like this, you understand that was an attempt at humor," Ret. Gen. Wesley Clark, former NATO Commander, said. "Maybe an attempt to maintain morale, but it crossed the line."
"If it were a younger enlisted sailor that would be one thing," Ret. Col. Stephen Ganyard, U.S. Marines, said. "But he's a Navy captain. He is a significant figure in the United States Navy."
Honors's superiors knew about the tapes at the time, yet the Navy captain was still promoted. Now the videos seem to have sunk a once-promising Naval career.
Honors has been reassigned to an administrative role.