Secretary of Defense James Mattis received media criticism this week after commending Navy sailors in a speech earlier in the month for not being "pussies."
"You will have some of the best days of your life and some of the worst days of your life in the U.S. Navy, you know what I mean?" Mattis told sailors at Naval Base Kitsap, Washington, according to the official transcript. "That means you're living."
"That means you're not some pussy sitting on the sidelines, you know what I mean, kind of sitting there saying, ‘Well, I should have done something with my life,'" he continued.
In response to his speech, NBC News complained that "Defense Secretary Mattis Uses Disparaging Term in Speech to Navy," comparing his remarks to Trump's comments on the infamous Access Hollywood tape about grabbing women "by the pussy."
Newsweek likewise complained that "Defense Secretary Suggests Civilians Are ‘Pussies' for Sitting on the Sidelines."
"Donald Trump's secretary of defense James ‘Mad Dog' Mattis appeared to suggest those who did not serve the country were ‘a bunch of pussies,'" read the lede.
The Washington Post consulted retired Col. Don Christensen, the head of an anti-sexual assault organization who said that Mattis' comments were "troubling."
Christensen noted that the remarks "clearly implied that those who don't serve are less manly than those who do."
"It just sends the wrong message to the 15 percent of the military who are women," he said. "As secretary of defense, he's just got to be more careful about the words he uses, especially around troops who in some cases worship him."