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Social media outrage sparked by West Point cadet texting while marching

6 months 1 week 1 day ago May 25, 2016 May 25, 2016 Wednesday, May 25 2016 May 25, 2016 9:08 AM in News
Source: WBRZ

WEST POINT, NY - A viral video of a West Point cadet occupied by her cellphone while marching in formation during Saturday’s graduation has sparked social media ire.

The video appeared on the academy’s Facebook page before quickly going on the amass more than 650,000 views. Several thousand reactions from users followed with a large majority of them critical of the cadets.

"Cadets on phones while marching, some cadets marching in platform heels, others sneakers, some with socks, others not. Great discipline. Is this the best and brightest future leadership of our military?" Facebook user Mark Browne wrote in a comment. His comments would receive hundreds of likes within a short period of time.

The New York Daily Times reported cadets are allowed to carry phones, but they are prohibited from using them while in formation.

"Cadets have an individual responsibility for ensuring their appearance and actions reflect the highest level of military professionalism," West Point spokesman Christopher Kasker told the Daily News.

"The graduation ceremony had more than 950 cadets, including the first seven women to be brought into combat divisions since restrictions were lifted," the newspaper noted.

The social media snafu isn’t the most recent appearance in the news by the U.S. Military Academy. Earlier in May, 16 black female cadets were placed under investigation after an image emerged of the cadets with fists raised as in a black power salute. Questions were raised as to whether the women were in violation of the Defense Department’s policy against engaging in political activities while in uniform.

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