U.S. Air Force Academy officer apologizes for sergeant's email

AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. - A commander at the U.S. Air Force Academy has apologized after a lower-ranking officer sent an email that struck some people as derogatory about African-Americans.

The Colorado Springs Gazette reports that Master Sgt. Zachary Parish sent the message to cadets Wednesday admonishing them about haircuts and saying retired basketball superstar Michael Jordan was never seen publicly with gaudy jewelry, sagging pants or a backward cap.

Parish is the top enlisted airman assigned to the student body, called the cadet wing. Across the military, top enlisted personnel enforce haircut regulations for lower-ranking personnel.

Col. Julian Stevens, the academy vice commandant of cadets, sent an email apologizing for Parish's comments. Stevens said Parish's message contained "microaggressions" that could be unrecognized and unintentional bias.

The academy said Parish wasn't immediately available to comment.  

And this isn't the first time AFA experienced incidents of alleged racial insensitivity. 

Back in September, the Academy was the center of an investigation where black slurs were written on the message boards of a group of black students attending the school. 

READ MORE: Cadet candidate leaves Air Force Academy Prep School after racist remarks

Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria, Superintendent of the Academy, said, "If you can't treat someone with dignity and respect, then you need to get out."

A cadet candidate did end up leaving the Academy and turns out, he was one of the students claiming he was a victim. 

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