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Ridiculous Arguments For Women In Combat

A high school website had some writings of students. Three girls wrote an article together saying, "The idea of women in combat is not unusual anymore. They should be able to hold combat positions because although physical strength matters, the military still needs the intelligence that women can bring. Also, banning women from the combat hurts their military careers. Although women account for only ten percent of the enlisted personnel (Time, 8/21/95/ Pg. 31), they are still a major part in the armed forces."

They end by saying, "Although many females are not eager to go into combat, there are women who can and want to do the job. In a time where technology takes over battle lines and brains might be more important than brawn, a reason to exclude women is non-existant."

This argument is ridiculous. It makes as much sense as having bouncers at bars be women because they "can and want to do the job" and will bring "intelligence." The idea that men are stronger and more aggressive than women isn't rocket science, but to the majority of Americans it seems to be beyond their "intelligence" to understand the most basic things. The girls who wrote this are brainwashed by our feminist culture, especially the culture of public schools that have posters of women being cops and firefighters. It is politically correct to be stupid today. The idea that "technology" and not "brawn" will save us if attacked is the height of idiocy. It is as if America is asleep again like it was at Pearl Harbor. It is rushing toward a position of weakness which emboldens our many enemies. We are rotting from within.

Thank God there are some voices of reason out there. John Luddy wrote the following excellent article in the American Enterprise magazine that gives the opposite type of thinking than the brainwashed teenage girls we just read:

ne of America’s biggest social welfare mobilizations—disbursing tens of billions of dollars worth of government-supplied day care, food, child subsidies, health care, housing, and cash payments annually—is run by an agency not normally thought of for its social spending: the U.S. Department of Defense. Even as shrinking budgets are pinching military readiness, the Defense Department is channeling sharply increased funding into human welfare programs. Subsidies to parents and children now consume fully one out of every ten dollars devoted to "defense." Most worrisome of all, today’s military has childrearing policies that recreate some of the worst aspects of our welfare system. There is now no better place in America to be an unwed mother than in the armed forces.

Support costs for military families began to rise with the massive, permanent mobilizations of the Cold War. As military staffing grew to several million to meet the Soviet threat, the mostly bachelor force that had existed until World War II was no longer realistic. As early as 1960, the number of dependents living on military support actually exceeded the number of active troops. With the end of the draft in 1973, the military again increased its social benefits to meet recruiting goals and entice troops to re-enlist.

But whether it’s having babies or growing corn, subsidizing an activity will bring more of it, and today military dependents outnumber active-duty military personnel 2.4 million to 1.6 million. Family-related costs to the Department of Defense amount to upwards of $25 billion a year, including family housing, additional pay for troops with dependents, day care, family separation allowances, adoption expenses, military schools, and other family-support funds. Dependents consume 62 percent of the military’s medical funds—more than $10 billion a year.

Indeed, $25 billion of Defense Department spending on family support is actually $3 billion more than the Navy will spend this year developing and buying new ships, submarines, and aircraft. It exceeds what the Army, Navy, and Air Force each spend on their worldwide operations in a year. It equals nearly half of the Army’s total budget. All this when many analysts are questioning current military readiness and the Clinton administration’s claim that it can simultaneously fight two wars.

Family housing expenditures illustrate the way defense priorities have been twisted. In 1985, when the total defense budget peaked at $402 billion (in inflation-adjusted 1996 dollars), the family housing account totaled $4 billion, or about one percent. Procurement of new weapons and equipment was $136 billion, or 34 percent of total spending. But while total defense spending tumbled 39 percent by fiscal year 1996 (to $246 billion), and procurement has declined 71 percent (to $39 billion), the family housing account remained at about $4 billion—a much bigger slice of a much smaller defense pie.

To be sure, basic support of military families is justified. Career personnel cannot be expected to forego having a family indefinitely, and these families must be cushioned from the frequent relocations, overseas deployments, absent parents, and other hardships of a military career. However, half of all enlistees depart after serving just one term, so only a minor part of all military dependent support can be justified as investment in career soldiers.

Discouraging pregnancy more generally among active military personnel would be wise. Until recent years, pregnancy was reason for discharge or transfer from most military postings. Civilians to whom this sounds harsh must remember the special nature of military service, with its peculiar hazards and rigors, as well as the life-and-death importance of unit readiness, and the high morale that comes from equal treatment and shared sacrifice among military personnel. Individuals who enlist in the armed forces surrender numerous personal rights that don’t mesh with the responsibilities of national defense.

Many military experts see married persons as poor candidates for entry-level enlistment, and believe that during their first tour of duty, young male and female enlisted personnel should be forbidden to marry—much less have children. This is precisely the intent of the policy that Gen. Carl Mundy, then Commandant of the Marine Corps, announced in 1993. Mundy had watched marriage upon marriage among young Marines disintegrate under the challenges of combining entry-level service with fledgling marriages. He had noticed, too, that Marines who were distracted from their missions were less likely to return from them. Believing that preventing this inherent conflict of loyalties from the outset would be pro-family and militarily sensible, he attempted to make it official policy. Liberal critics like Rep. Patricia Schroeder (D-Colo.) ferociously attacked Mundy’s decision, however, and President Clinton swiftly rescinded the order.

The military’s current marriage policy is extremely costly—and, where illegitimacy is concerned, troubling. Navy policy toward pregnancy epitomizes the moral equivocation of today’s new-age military. In the panicky, post-Tailhook Navy, the burden of pregnant sailors is exceeded only by the refusal among senior leaders to do anything about it. Each year, up to 18 percent of Navy women become pregnant. One-third of these never marry during their pregnancy. Nearly 75 percent of these pregnancies occur among 20- to 24-year-old junior enlisted women. Among 1,300 women sailors questioned in one recent survey, 87 percent had had a child in the past three years.

Under these circumstances, why would the Navy adopt a policy like the one it announced in February 1995, which further encourages women to become pregnant? Mirroring the general Clinton administration approach of paying lip service to military readiness while always placing individual desires ahead of military needs, the policy states that a "full complement of highly trained personnel is essential to maintaining operational readiness in deployable units," but nonetheless "pregnancy and parenthood are compatible with a naval career." This ignores the seriousness of having military units staffed by persons who cannot deploy to their assignments. It also overlooks the harm that can come to children whose mothers are deployed abroad.

How does this policy work? Consider an unmarried female Petty Officer Third Class. If she becomes pregnant, she may immediately request special permission to move out of barracks or off ship and live off base at government expense. After her twentieth week of pregnancy, commanders are required to grant such a request. Nine months’ housing allowance amounts to approximately $2,400. After the woman’s child is born, she receives 45 days of paid maternity leave, worth an additional $1,800. Throughout her pregnancy, our sailor is entitled to free obstetrical care, and free delivery. Her infant immediately becomes eligible for years of day care, medical and dental care, recreational and educational subsidies, and other benefits. Financial costs in just this first year run to many thousands of dollars.

Other costs are more difficult to quantify. This sailor left a gap in her unit. Her commander had to spend time and effort to replace her. Someone else had to do extra work—including, if she was in a deploying unit, going to sea in her place for up to 6 months. There was undoubtedly some resentment and damage to morale.

The only current disincentive to pregnancy is a warning that women will be returned to sea duty once their maternity period ends. But even this the Navy can choose to ignore (indeed, for the infant’s sake one might hope for such a decision). No sailor-mother may be held accountable in any way for the inconvenience, expense, and damage to readiness caused by her actions, because the policy expressly states that "periods of absence because of pregnancy or associated medical care shall not be the basis for downgrading remarks" on her service record.

The Navy has simply abandoned all moral leadership and responsibility to its young men and women (and their children). It refuses to view pregnancy as a disqualifying condition for military action. It draws no distinction between married and unmarried servicewomen who become pregnant. It doesn’t demand financial support and other forms of paternal responsibility even though 70 percent of the fathers of military births are also in the military. In a striking departure from public sentiment, the Navy does not even require the pregnant servicewoman to identify her child’s father. As in the civilian welfare system, that child simply becomes a dependent of Uncle Sam.

The Pentagon’s family and pregnancy policies not only waste billions of dollars, they erode a service culture that rests on personal sacrifice—cultivating instead an individualism that sacrifices military necessity (and the welfare of children and families) to personal desires. If our military’s civilian and uniformed leaders lack the wisdom and fortitude to prohibit misguided choices among the 19-year-olds standing on our defensive watchtowers, then who exactly will draw the boundaries so necessary to our nation’s future?

A former Marine infantry officer, John Luddy is currently a legislative aide to a U.S. Senator.


Midge Midge DecterDecter is a wise social critic who rightly says Americans have gone mad. They have embraced the "nutty" ideas of Feminism that says there is no difference between men and women and this leads to the insane view that women should be in combat.

The following is excerpts from a speech titled "THE MADNESS OF THE AMERICAN FAMILY" that was printed in the Policy Review, September-October, 1998. It was also printed at their website:

She says that Feminist leaders were like Pied Pipers who led society down the path to cultural madness. Women fell

under the influence of a movement that was equating marriage and motherhood with chattel slavery. "We want," said Gloria Steinem, one of this movement’s most celebrated spokeswomen ("a saint" is what Newsweek magazine once called her), "to be the husbands we used to marry."

Let Magazineus ponder that remark for a moment: "We want to be the husbands we used to marry." Underlying the real ideology of the women’s movement, sometimes couched in softer language and sometimes in uglier, is the proposition that the differences between men and women are merely culturally imposed—culturally imposed, moreover, for nefarious purposes. That single proposition underlies what claims to be no more than the movement’s demands for equal treatment, and it constitutes the gravamen of the teaching of women’s studies in all our universities.

And need I say that it has been consequential throughout our society? I don’t, I think, have to go through the whole litany of the women’s complaints. Nor do I have to go into detail about their huge political success in convincing the powers that be that they represented half the country’s population, and thus obtaining many truly disruptive legislative remedies for their would-be sorrows.

Among the remedies that follow from the proposition that the differencesDecter - New Chastity between men and women are merely culturally imposed has been that of letting women in on the strong-man action. Why, it was successfully argued, should they not be firemen, policemen, coal miners, sports reporters—in many ways most significant of all—combat soldiers?

The Soldier and the Baby-Tender

At the outset of the Gulf War, early in that first phase of it called Desert Shield, the New York Post carried on its front page a newsphoto—it may have appeared in many papers, or at least it should have—illustrating a story about the departure for Saudi Arabia of a group of reservists. The picture was of a young woman in full military regalia, including helmet, planting a farewell kiss on the brow of an infant at most three months old being held in the arms of its father. The photo spoke volumes about where this society has allowed itself to get dragged to and was in its way as obscene as anything that has appeared in that cesspool known as Hustler magazine. It should have been framed and placed on the desk of the president, the secretary of defense, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and every liberal Senator in the United States Congress.

What could be a more radical idea than that there is no natural difference between men and women?

That photo was not about the achievement of women’s equality; it was about the nuttiness—in this case, perhaps the proper word is madness—that has overtaken all too many American families. For the household in which—let’s use the social scientists’ pompous term for it—"the sexual differentiation of roles" has grown so blurry that you can’t tell the soldier from the baby-tender without a scorecard is a place of profound disorder. No wonder we are a country with a low birthrate and a high divorce rate.

We see milder forms of this disorder all over the place, especially in cases where young mothers have decreed that mothers and fathers are to be indistinguishable as to their—my favorite word—roles. Again, you cannot tell—or rather, you are not supposed to be able to tell—the mommy from the daddy. The child, of course, knows who is what. No baby or little kid who is hungry or frightened or hurting ever calls for his daddy in the middle of the night. He might get his daddy, but it is unlikely that that would have been his intention.

Everybody has always known such things: What is a husband, what is a wife; what is a mother, what is a father. How have we come to the place where they are open for debate? "Untune that string," says Shakespeare, "and hark what discord follows."

It is not all that remarkable, for instance, that there should have been the kind of women’s movement that sprang up among us. There have from time to time throughout recorded history been little explosions of radicalism, of refusal to accept the limits of human existence, and what could be a more radical idea than that there is no natural difference between the sexes? Just to say the words is to recognize that what we have here is a rebellion not against a government or a society, but against the very constitution of our beings, we men and women.

The question is, what caused such an idea to reverberate as it did among two generations of the most fortunate women who ever lived? As for their men, what idea lay at the bottom of their response to all this we do not quite know, for they giggled nervously and for the most part remained silent. But it is not difficult to see that if the movement’s ideas represented an assault on the age-old definition of their manhood, it also relieved them of a great burden of responsibility: Seeing that their services as protectors and defenders and breadwinners had been declared no longer essential, they were now free—in some cases literally, in some cases merely emotionally—to head for the hills.

Since the condition of families depends to a considerable degree on the condition of marriages, small wonder, then, that the subject of family has been put up for debate.

She goes to say:

You Can’t Fool Mother Nature

The question is, how did we as a society ever come to this disordered place? For one thing, what has encouraged us to imagine that anything is possible if we merely will it to be? And for another, how have we strayed this far from the wisdom so painfully earned by all those who came before us and prepared the earth to receive us? I ask these questions in no polemical spirit, because few of us have not in one way or another been touched by them, if not in our own households, then in the lives of some of those near and dear to us.

What is it, in short, that so many Americans have forgotten, or have never learned, about the nature of human existence?

One thing they have forgotten—or perhaps never learned—is that you can’t fool Mother Nature. If you try to do so, you sicken and die, spiritually speaking—like those little painted turtles that used to be a tourist novelty for children and, because their shells were covered in paint, could never live beyond a few days.

The land of limitless freedom, as so many among us are now beginning to discover, turns out to be nothing more than the deep muck and mire of Self.

Well, we do not, like those novelty turtles, literally die: On the contrary, as I have said, we have been granted the possibility of adding years to our lives; but far too many of us, especially the young people among us, live what are at bottom unnatural lives. Too many young women, having recovered from their seizure of believing that they were required to become Masters of the Universe, cannot find men to marry them, while the men on their side cannot seem to find women to marry. Both grope around, first bewildered and then made sour by what is happening to them. And there is nothing in the culture around them—that nutty, nutty culture—to offer medicine for their distemper.

What is it Mother Nature knows that so many of us no longer do? It is that marriage and family are not a choice like, say, deciding where to go and whom to befriend and how to make a living. Together, marriage and parenthood are the rock on which human existence stands.

She ends her speech saying:

Wisdom and Gratitude

I believe that two things will help us to be restored from our current nuttiness. The first is for us, as a people and a culture, to recapture our respect for the wisdom of our forbears. That wisdom was earned in suffering and trial; we throw it away—and many of us have thrown it away—at their and our very great peril. The second is a strong and unending dose of gratitude: the kind of gratitude that people ought to feel for the experience of living in freedom; the kind of gratitude the mother of a newborn feels as she counts the fingers and toes of the tiny creature who has been handed to her; the kind of gratitude we feel when someone we care about has passed through some danger; the kind of gratitude we experience as we walk out into the sunshine of a beautiful day, which is in fact none other than gratitude for the gift of being alive.

All around us these days, especially and most fatefully among the young women in our midst, there are signs of a surrender to nature and the common sense that goes with it. The famous anthropologist Margaret Mead—a woman who in her own time managed to do quite a good deal of damage to the national ethos—did once say something very wise and prophetic. She said that the real crimp in a woman’s plans for the future came not from the cries but from the smiles of her baby.

Being a member of a family does not make you happy; it makes you human.

How many young women lawyers and executives have been surprised to discover, first, that they could not bear to remain childless, and second, that they actually preferred hanging around with their babies to preparing a brief or attending a high-level meeting? One could weep for the difficulty they had in discovering the true longings of their hearts. Next—who knows—they may even begin to discover that having a real husband and being a real wife in return may help to wash away all that bogus posturing rage that has been making them so miserable to themselves and others.

When that happens, we may be through debating and discussing and defining and redefining the term "family" and begin to relearn the very, very old lesson that life has limits and that only by escaping Self and becoming part of the onrushing tide of generations can we ordinary humans give our lives their intended full meaning. We have been endowed by our Creator not only with unalienable rights but with the knowledge that is etched into our very bones.

All we have to do is listen. And say thank you. And pray.