I recently came across a post related to an important political shakeup that swept the nation in the past month. I will not name the poster for fear of his life, but here it is:
“Putting women in combat roles is not about equality. It’s about making wars very unpopular and dismanteling [sic] the military.
Even though nobody likes to see our men get killed in combat, we can swallow it as a nation because it’s men being killed. However, when women start to be killed in combat at the same rate the men are then it becomes much harder for us to take.
Women aren’t supposed to be fighting wars, and they aren’t supposed to be dying in wars. They are not the warriors, but rather the nurturers and care givers. Placing women in positions of combat is unnatural and there is going to be a huge uproar when people see women coming back in body bags, or worse captured by the enemy.
This is by design, it is the Obama administrations goal to dismantle the military and this is one of the ways that they will make it happen.”
My gut reaction, which I narrowly avoided posting, went a little something like this: ” YOU IGNORANT SEXIST BASTARD. MEN LIKE YOU GIVE OUR HALF OF THE SPECIES A BAD NAME. KINDLY GET YOUR HEAD OUT OF YOUR ASS AND JOIN THE REST OF US IN THE 21st CENTURY.”
Unfortunately, it has been my experience that emotionally charged visceral reaction like this only tend to exacerbate any given situation and fail utterly to change people’s perspectives. What I went with, was the following:
“I think this is a splendid idea. In the early years of the Republic, women’s rights movements demanded more liberties for women, (such as owning property or voting–basic privileges of citizenship) or even seeking gainful employment and controlling their own money (still basic citizenship stuff, but related to personal autonomy as well) and lately we’ve been hearing more about the acquisition and use of birth control technology (personally, i buy condoms out-of-pocket as a courtesy so I really haven’t followed that debate, but it speaks to a woman’s rights over her own person: a basic principle of citizenship).
now, though, a women’s rights group has lobbied for greater responsibility, and I whole-heartedly approve. Since women entered the workforce, there has been a rise in the number of stay-at-home fathers in this country; the Victorian gender roles have been out moded and child-rearing responsibilities are more spread out than they once were. (it’s not even close to a perfect 50/50, but change is in the air) and now the United States is taking steps to even out a gender discrepancy in another field of responsibility in modern American life: armed combat. (What some people seem to be forgetting, is that female police officers have been in, and lived through, armed combat situations for years now. So, in reality, any attempt to block this policy change would have been about as effective as the proverbial scenario of closing the barn door after the horse got loose.)
When America was founded, it did not treat women correctly: they were second-class citizens, little more than slaves or property. Now, through their own impassioned efforts and some aid from right-minded individuals in the power structure, women have, (on paper), gained the same socio-political and economic rights and responsibilities as men. It is the right and responsibility of any free citizen to fight for their freedom and their nation. American men have shouldered this burden for over 200 years now. But men and women were never intended to stand apart: we are the two halves of the human whole and we are designed to complement one another by cooperation in equal shares, with neither held in prominence over the other. Women of America, I thank you for stepping up as comrades in arms, truly equal to our men, to maintain the sovereignty and security of our home. God bless you all.”
I realize that I am not female, and that therefore my right/ability to speak on or evaluate women’s roles in society is limited. (I am also painfully aware of the fact that nothing short of a sledge-hammer lobotomy can alter this particular backward young man’s way of thinking.) But, having encountered a level of sheer stupidity that defies my sense of temporal continuity, I felt the need to speak up on behalf of every man who does not walk around with his head in his rectum viewing the world through his penis.
And, in light of the policy changes behind this unpleasantness, I say to America’s servicewomen in combat: Good luck, and Godspeed.