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US Navy chief takes woke books off the reading list

FOX News logo FOX News 5/8/2022 Bradford Betz
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Several books on the U.S. Navy’s Professional Reading Program that provoked outrage last year were absent in an updated reading list released Friday. 

Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Mike Gilday’s updated list includes 12 books in the genres of fiction, non-fiction, military, strategy, management, and technology. 

FILE: Members of the Navy Ceremonial Guard stand for the national anthem during a ceremony for National POW/MIA Recognition Day, at the U.S. Navy Memorial on September 17, 2021 in Washington, DC. Kevin Dietsch © Kevin Dietsch FILE: Members of the Navy Ceremonial Guard stand for the national anthem during a ceremony for National POW/MIA Recognition Day, at the U.S. Navy Memorial on September 17, 2021 in Washington, DC. Kevin Dietsch

Missing from the list were the titles Ibram X. Kendi’s "How to Be an Antiracist," Michelle Alexander’s "The New Jim Crow" and Jason Pierceson’s "Sexual Minorities and Politics" – all of which were included on the Navy’s 2021 reading list. 

Several Republican members of Congress had raised concerns about these titles being included, with one telling Gilday in a letter that the views expressed in "How to Be an Antiracist" were "explicitly anti-American." 

Ibram X. Kendi at American University in Washington following a panel discussion on his book "How to Be an Antiracist" on Sept. 26, 2019. Michael A. McCoy/For The Washington Post via Getty Images © Michael A. McCoy/For The Washington Post via Getty Images Ibram X. Kendi at American University in Washington following a panel discussion on his book "How to Be an Antiracist" on Sept. 26, 2019. Michael A. McCoy/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Gilday responded at the time that the Kendi’s book was included because "it evokes the author’s own personal journal in understanding barriers to true inclusion, the deep nuances of racism and racial inequalities." 

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Gilday said the goal of the program is to foster the continued education and growth – both personal and professional – of sailors. 

"We are driving a fleet-wide campaign of self-improvement," Gilday said in a statement published Friday. "We must foster an organization that supports and empowers Sailors to have an independent quest for knowledge through reading and information sharing. What you know and how fast you learn is relevant in this era of strategic competition." 

Friday’s updated reading list includes the following titles: 

Fox News has reached out to the Navy for comment on the updated reading list but did not hear back before publication time. 

Fox News’ Audrey Conklin contributed to this story. 

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