08 June 2011

One more thing inspired by SFC

I'm absolutely certain that if the ACT had been scored with a sex-based rubric comparable to our military's physical fitness requirements I'd have had a much higher number to brag about . . . or be too embarrassed to mention. "I did awesome on the girl ACT!"

I seriously don't know how anyone can publicize these things, much less actually use them, with a straight face.

Army Physical Fitness Standards (Too lazy to link to other branches, but rest assured that no equal opportunities require equal performance.)


HappyFox said...

Meh - men's & women's bodies are different. In a country with an integrated armed forces & no draft, you'd lose a lot of people if you made men's & women's standards the same. The soldiers I knew just looked at it as "the PT test" not "the men's test" or "the women's test". I'm sure the guys in all-male units may see things differently, but in the mixed units I was in, I heard very little complaining (which could be because I'm a woman, I don't know :D ).


HappyFox said...

I think we should have mandatory service, like South Korea does, but that ain't gonna happen. :)

Rebekah said...

The fact that men's and women's bodies are different is one of the reasons I stand in the minority which doesn't support an integrated military. Conveniently, I'd also be happy to have a much smaller military. And mandatory service?! HappyFox, camo notwithstanding, I had no idea you were such a statist! ;)

HappyFox said...

Hehehe. I'm torn on the integrated military thing. I had fun in the Army & our mixed units perform very well. However, I think the armed forces is a male-only vocation. I think my main objection, unreasonable as it is, is that I enjoyed my time in the Army & really wouldn't want to be around a bunch of women all day in some WAC-type unit.

Anonymous said...

I know there are many Christian women who serve in the military. And I know these women are our sisters in Christ. But I seriously don't understand what goes thru their mind. Why do they want to be like men?

Women serving in the military, Firefighters and female police officers are perverting what our Lord has ordained as appropriate roles for women. Seeing a women in a military uniform is almost as bad as seeing a guy dressed in drag.

As a mother, if any of my daughters ever wanted to serve in any of those capacities, I would be heartbroken.

Rebekah said...

Anon, I think it's just another problem of metaphysical posture, as Mrs. Hildebrand would say. We have all been trained to think in terms of rights and what we're allowed to do, rather than what we are needed to do and what is good and wise for us to do.

If a daughter of mine got it in her head to be a soldier or rescue worker I'd tell her she had to beat her brothers in arm wrestling and a foot race first.

Katy said...

I thought this article was a thoughtful response to women in service:


I had never considered before I read the article the ever-biological reality that any woman-soldier COULD be pregnant.

lisa said...

Lewis often has the ready oneliner. He does in L,W&W with Father Christmas telling Lucy,"...battles are ugly when women fight." That said, Father Christmas gives Susan bow/arrows/quiver and Lucy a dagger - both to be used "in great need". You know, like a handgun :) (Or the shotgun Ma Ingalls toted when Pa got caught in bad weather and couldn't get back to the cabin).

How is it that most children who read that vignette can nod at the evident wisdom of Father Christmas's words and it's not until puberty (when we have usually been disabused of any stupid notion of men and women being different and having different vocations) that we then begin to say, "But..but..it's.not.faiiiirrrrr."

In trying to google the Father Christmas quote (unsuccessfully; had to break out the hard copy) I found this very brief article:
I hadn't seen the movie, so I didn't know. As usual, I'm 2-3yrs behind. Surprise :)

I try not to get too upset when I see a woman in uniform. Chances are she is well-meaning and the reason she's even wearing that uniform is b/c a bunch of men decided to "give her the right" to do so. Rather kind of them. Now they may drink whiskey and continue with their Thursday night poker while she serves, mourns being barren while in career service, mourns being away from her kids when deployed and mourns having to clean the toilet when she does get home b/c she's the one who still can't stand to see it dirty.

It's just another job that it's ridiculous to foist on our shoulders. Really. Men, you listening?

The Rev. BT Ball said...

I rejoice in the particular gifts of the fairer sex, but I have a funny story about this kind of stuff.

4th year at Seminary; seminarians smoking in Isolation. Off goes the smoke/fire alarm and here come Clayton's bravest. First one off the truck - a firewoman about the size of my then fiance, now wife - little.

The next day at church I ask an old fireman in my fieldwork congregation, "So how is she going to carry me out of a smoking building?"

He said, "She's not".

Me - "So why is she first off the truck?"

"Politics boy, politics."

Anonymous said...

Thank you for another timely post. This topic of women in the military in general and women in combat specifically has been on my mind this past week. My husband is an officer in the military, so of course we know plenty of women in his branch of service.

I guess the biggest thing I am struggling with is not "could they" or "should they". It's "why in the world would they want to" serve in the military. I've thought, well... you know there are plenty of admin/staff corps rolls in the military. Why shouldn't a women be a nurse, doctor, JAG officer etc if she wants to. My husband and I have chosen for me to stay home with our children because we think it's proper, and let's face it, we're all a whole lot happier because I do. I don't feel "less than" women who work or a waste because I stay home, but if they want to work, they have the freedom. Right?

I started down this road of internal debate last week after talking to an admin officer at my husband's duty station who, like me, is 33 year-old. She is unmarred but has a serious boyfriend who is also military (which adds in a whole new layer of complication when military members marry). As we sat on the beach and watched my children play, she told me she thought she wanted kids... maybe, but after her next duty station, she would return to sea duty. How could she have kids while assigned to a ship? That's exactly what I've thought.

Add to that the fact that her current tour, as well as my husband's, is a year unaccompanied overseas (meaning the military will not move us with him). We are visiting him now for two months and we will visit for two or three more months around Thanksgiving and Christmas. We miss our daddy, but at least the children are with their mother. I think it's different if their mother were to be gone from them for a year, even in a non-combat situation such as this. So my point is that there are a lot of situations in the military that are not conducive to motherhood that have nothing to do with combat. You are not just a "working mom" when you are in the military.

Also I recently read "The Flip Side of Feminism" (Sorry underline and italics won't work.) and loved it. One of the main points of the book is how nearly everyone in our culture has bought in to feminism without even realizing it, even those who *think* they don't agree with feminists.

As to the original point of the post, I think if women are clamoring for equal pay, status, duties, etc, then they should absolutely be held to the same standards. Why should women be given a pass?


lisa said...

thank you for the insights.

I would volunteer that the career woman's use of daycare greases the tracks for sea duty even seeming thinkable to servicewomen.

If in essence it's not a bad idea to warehouse your kid, then why not push it to the nth degree and just say "some situations" (such as mom in military and being away) are just "harder roads"? But, legitimate all the same.

HappyFox said...

As far as "why would a woman want to do that", when I was 18, I joined the Army as a French horn player because I wanted to continue to play my horn. Where else can a kid just out of high school get a full-time playing gig? I didn't put much thought into the military aspect of the job (I mean, good grief, it's the BAND :D), but this was in the late-80's - a much different climate both worldwide and in our own Army.


Anonymous said...

Men's and women's brains are different, too.

On the SAT, above the mean, men outnumber women.

Below the mean, women outnumber men.

Yet, in college, women outnumber men.

What is wrong with this picture?