Indigo Insights

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Women in Combat?
Dean Esmay stirred up a real hornet’s nest with that Mother’s Day question. Only females could respond to this: “Do you think women belong in direct combat duty roles in the armed forces? Should there be any limits at all?” If you missed it, go catch up. This could be a very interesting ongoing topic for a while.

The arguments given by women against women in combat in Dean's comments (i.e., female body bags, rape, torture, pregnancy, “nurturers” shouldn’t be combatants, male soldiers would be jeopardized by their “instinct” to protect women, etc., etc., plus other such b.s.) seemed to be gut responses emanating from backward mind-sets. Some of the archaiac opinions given seemed more like what chauvinistic males would post, rather than 21st century women.

I put my two cents worth of comments in at Dean Esmay’s site as follows: “My reservations concerning women in combat is not to protect women. They can take care of themselves. They do have physical limitations, however, that could make it difficult, if not impossible, to bring a wounded buddy off the battlefield. Side-by-side ground fighting would not be a good idea, IMO. Anything else, they could do as well or better than their male counterparts. Semper Fi!"

Allow me to ‘splain further. The only point I intended to make in the way of a negative response was addressed to the strength issue. I live among Marines – male and female. They really are The Few, The Proud. About the only combat situation I can think of wherein a female Marine may be unequal to a male Marine would be getting a wounded comrade out of a battle zone. In other words, physical strength. If her wounded buddy happened to outweigh her by 100 pounds, that could be a problem. Actually, I have heard male Marines voice that issue as their only reservation too. If wounded, they want to be confident that the soldier next to them can get them out of a fire zone. I did not make that clear in my comment post and wanted to clarify. Some of the male responders explained the physical strength concern much better than I did.

Follow-up blogs from Da Goddess and Cut on the Bias differ some in their opinions, but they both raise arguments that I am sympathetic to. The comments on both these sites are well-stated too. Men commenters were welcomed to post and had some interesting input.

I want to say unequivocally that I strongly believe in the equality of women in any endeavor or profession they choose. Yes, muscle mass and breasts are differences, but as stated in a previous blog, I burned my bra during the Korean War.