A US Navy captain is expected to be temporarily relieved of his duties while the Navy investigates anti-gay and obscene comedy videos he produced for his crew.
Captain Owen Honors, who is now the commander of the Enterprise, the world’s first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, is said to have produced the sketches in 2006 and 2007 while he was the executive officer on the ship, the Washington Post reports.
The sketches credit him as writer and producer and are said to be “crude” and “raunchy”, with homophobic slurs, sexual innuendo, toilet humour and swearing.
They were shown as part of the Enterprise crew’s weekly movie night and were leaked to the Virginian-Pilot newspaper, shortly after President Obama signed a bill to repeal the ban on openly gay soldiers.
Among other things, the videos contain lesbian shower scenes, simulated masturbation and anti-gay insults.
Since the story broke, two more videos have come to light containing a disclaimer from Capt Owens.
In prefaces to the films, he says: “As usual, the captain and the admiral, they don’t know anything at all about the content of the video and the movie this evening and they should absolutely not be held accountable in any judicial setting.”
It is not clear who leaked the videos or why. The Virginian-Pilot quoted anonymous sources who said they had been offended by them.
A Navy spokesman said the videos were “not acceptable” five years ago or in today’s Navy.
“The Navy does not endorse or condone these kinds of actions. Those in command . . . are charged to lead by example and are held accountable for setting the proper tone and upholding the standards of honour, courage and commitment that we expect sailors to exemplify,” he added.
Aubrey Sarvis, a veteran and executive director of the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, called on the Navy to fully investigate the videos.
He said: “Captain Owen Honors was acting more like the president of a frat house rather than the executive officer of the USS Enterprise. We call upon the Navy to investigate this matter thoroughly.
“It is very important that the most senior leadership make it absolutely clear that this kind of bad behaviour and poor judgment is not only unacceptable, but that there is no place in the Navy for those who engage in this sort of frat house behaviour in the workplace.”