Maybe you guys already discussed this before I joined this site, but I was just reminded of this story by a video on fb.
I've heard a lot of guys opinions on this for years, so I'm more interested about what women think? Is the author right on? Do you care much about it?
I think having women in law enforcement is excellent. I've been able to diffuse situations that my male officers could not simply because I was female and sometime it takes a women's touch to get the job done. There is none of this in the infantry. It's not even the same planet....I'll stop. I don't want to offend anyone. I do happen to feel pretty strongly on this issue and I realize it's probably not a popularly held belief. I am TOTALLY for equality and women's rights. I do however believe the military knows what they are doing and for very good reasons.
If a 9 year old African boy can fire an assault rifle, why not a woman?
I do however believe the military knows what they are doing and for very good reasons.
What reason do you have to think that, considering all the military clusterfucks throughout the years.
"If a 9 year old African boy can fire an assault rifle, why not a woman?"
Sure lets drop the age of enlistment to nine right now. I really hope you can see how ridiculous your statement is. In the US military, a full combat load can weight 100lbs or more. If you are a woman who is 5'-2" and all of 120lbs, it's going to be a lot harder to do the things that are needed to be done in combat than it is for a larger man with more muscle mass. Try carrying all that gear and then dragging a 200lbs dude in 100lbs of gear 50m-25m while returning fire. As a medium sized guy, I have trouble enough keeping up, but if a woman can meet the standards that almost 12 years of combat have determined is necessary, then by all means let her do it.
Also, that 9 year old African boy was likely forced to carry that weapon just as he was likely to have been forced to see other atrocities perpetuated to his only family, atrocities he may have been held at gunpoint to help commit. I understand your point, but you've unintentionally made the worst comparison you could possibly make.
I understand your point, but you've unintentionally made the worst comparison you could possibly make.
I pointed out that children have, and still are fighting in wars (no 100lbs of equipment) but they are participating (unwillingly). Most of the arguments I have heard against women in combat roles rarely hold the gear weight as the main reason they should play housewife.
Most are about women distracting the male soldiers, or having to participate in an operation with women is embarrassing, that combat is "too gross and violent" for women, and so on.
Here is what Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said when he rescinded the combat ban: “If members of our military can meet the qualifications for a job — and let me be clear, I’m not talking about reducing the qualifications for the job — if they can meet the qualifications for the job, then they should have the right to serve, regardless of creed or color or gender or sexual orientation.”
What I am saying is that if a child is capable of fighting in a war, whether forced or not, why should a woman, who WANTS to participate not be allowed to at least try?
It takes little physical effort to hold an AK-47, point it at someone, and pull a trigger. It's so easy even a child can do it as you have pointed out. There is far more to being a professional Soldier than that, and if that's your bar for establishing whether a person should or shouldn't engage in combat, then I'm sure glad you don't hold a position of command in our military.
I agree with the the former Defense Secretary. I've already stated as much. I'm not arguing that point.
Those child soldiers that have been press ganged into fighting are not professional Soldiers. They are bandits, marauders, and pillagers. They don't attack other armed forces. They end up attacking defenseless villages. They don't follow Geneva Conventions. They don't care about rules of war. They've never heard of "Civilian Casualties" or "Escalation of Force." People who use child soldiers don't care about evacuation, first aid, or even about the basic welfare of their child soldiers. They are all completely expendable because more can just be captured later. These are just some of the reasons why it's a poor comparison. A professional armed force is none of these things and reducing any law-abiding nation's military to nothing more than the worst kind of enslavement, torture, and slaughter is a disservice to those people who do want to join.
My main point is that the requirements to carry around a rifle and shoot at people makes a person a Soldier as much as being able to drive 2 miles to the grocery store means that I'm able to drive in Le Mans. Or being able to throw some paint on a canvas makes me a professional artist. Or being able to whittle wood makes me a carpenter.
When I say it's not a good comparison, the above is what I mean.
Oh, so the standards for an American soldier have dropped to just being able to hold an assault rifle. Pity, I would have hoped it also involved being able to sling a wounded comrade weighing 200-220 over his/her shoulder and carry them a couple hundred yards to a waiting chopper, or carry a 60 lb pack a couple thousand yards up a mountainside.
You really haven't thought this through, have you?
If a woman can meet the standards, fine. If she can't, they should have no use for her out in the battlefield but she can certainly make a valuable contribution elsewhere. Flying a helicopter or plane, for example.
Oh, so the standards for an American soldier have dropped to just being able to hold an assault rifle. Pity
Don't worry. With the advancement of technological warfare soldiers have become nintendo-heroes, so soon the only requirement to join the army is going to be the ability to control a joystick, and then even women will be able qualify and kill some dirty civilians.
Makes me think of the movie Surrogates.
RE: "...but she can certainly make a valuable contribution elsewhere. Flying a helicopter or plane, for example." - you surprised me, I half-expected you to say, "making coffee."
Men can volunteer for combat, but the majority who wind up there, do so involuntarily - they are tested extensively, and if their ability and aptitude tests qualify them for positions other than infantry, if the need to fill those positions exists, they are then trained to fill them. Only those less qualified for other jobs generally wind up as involuntary infantry.
I believe women should be given an option, and once they've chosen the infantry, if they do, they should be put through the same rigorous training as a man - in this instance, it's not about being "fair," it's about "are you physically and emotionally able to cover your buddy's ass?" and if the answer is yes, then by all means, they should have the right.
Plus occupation's sort of heresay at this point. I mean, granted I'm a 19D (cav scout... glorified infantry, though don't let them know that) but given that the mission today revolves around "mentoring" (security), having a job in supply won't necessarily keep you at a nice big base with running water and out of baby-wipe bathing-- still, yeah, there does tend to be that pyramidal path to combat.
I'm trying to imagine women training with infantry at Ft. Benning... yeeeaaahh, that's not too much of a stretch.
Isn't Ft. Benning home to the 101st?