- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 6, 2014

The U.S. Army has given its stamp of approval to the use of the term “Negro” when referring to blacks or African-Americans, a newly published regulation states.

The military confirmed the use of the term in its Oct. 22 version of the “Army Command Policy,” or AR 600-20, CNN reported.

The pertinent section of the document about “race and ethnic code definitions” states — under the heading of “Black or African American” — that the term can be used to describe “a person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa. Terms such as ‘Haitian’ or ‘Negro’ can be used in addition to ‘Black’ or African American,’ ” CNN reported.

An Army source told CNN that the term “Negro” could have been added to the policy to allow blacks that opportunity to “self report” and pick which is the preferred term — black, African-American or Negro.

But a military officer said that was “the dumbest thing I have ever heard,” and noted that the Pentagon doesn’t ever use the term, CNN said.

And Lt. Col S. Justin Platt, a spokesman for the Army, said the word hails from an outdated section of the policy manual.

“The racial definitions in AR 600-20 paragraph 6.2 are outdated, currently under review and will be updated shortly,” Mr. Platt said, CNN reported. “The Army takes pride in sustaining a culture where all personnel are treated with dignity and respect and not discriminated against based on race, color, religion, gender and national origin.”

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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