The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been focusing on “LGBTQI+” inclusivity and “gender-neutral” language under President Joe Biden—even while it's been struggling to effectively manage the country's commercial air traffic.
On Wednesday, the FAA issued the first nationwide “ground stop” since September 11, 2001, following a computer-system failure overnight that caused the grounding of thousands of flights and sent the nation's air traffic into chaos.
It was the second such calamity in the span of the same number of months after a winter storm disrupted air travel during the Christmas season. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg blamed Southwest Airlines for the problem, with its personnel-management system leading to company-wide cancellations, which accounted for a large portion of the national disruption. However, the FAA's systems and processes are entirely under his control, and this is only the latest of many transportation issues that he has overseen.
However, the FAA has not been completely detached from reality. It has been focused on other areas, such as the use of more “gender-neutral and inclusive” language to describe aviation and the “aerospace community.”
The agency also has pushed “LGBTQI+ visibility”—with the “positive” representing any residual gender or sexual identity that is not encompassed by “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, [and] intersex.”
In line with the Biden administration's emphasis on “equity”—in contrast with the old “equality”—the FAA has also focused its efforts on creating an “inclusive” community of drone operators, a “safe space” for Hispanic employees, and a “herstory” for women.
Some examples from the FAA Twitter account:
“In our latest episode of ‘The Air Up There' podcast, we’re talking about the Drone Advisory Committee’s work to create a more inclusive aviation community. Listen to the full episode at https://bit.ly/3d7KDlk.”
“Innovation thrives when we're inclusive. Embracing peoples' backgrounds, differences and viewpoints makes us stronger and safer. We continue to celebrate #HHM with FAA employees who reflect on the importance of creating a safe space for all voices to be heard and valued.”
“Words matter! Join us on March 23 at 2 PM ET for a conversation with a dynamic group of women as they share how changing the words we use can create a more inclusive aerospace community. Watch here or at https://bit.ly/3HRFomv. #equity #WomensHistoryMonth.”
However, the FAA’s website reads: “The mission of the FAA is to provide the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world.”