Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Rank and File Oppose Women in Combat

One of President Obama’s priorities for the military is putting women in military combat. His top general at the Pentagon, Martin Dempsey, has suggested lowering physical standards to help women pass the fitness test. But lowering standards won’t fool the rank and file of the armed forces, who are still skeptical of this move ordered by the top brass. In April, the Associated Press reported the results of a survey of special operations personnel. These are the fighters who undergo the most grueling training and engage in some of the most dangerous work. Their experience has given them pause about pushing women to fill combat roles. Many respondents don’t think women are physically cut out for military combat. Others are worried about increased chances for sexual harassment. Many women still have reservations about females in combat. They know that lowering standards could put them at risk, and others might look down on them for needing help to pass the combat tests.

Surveys like this one allow servicemen and –women to offer their opinions, but many in the military don’t want to speak out. Anna Simons, a professor at the Naval Postgraduate School and an opponent of women in combat, said that some officers are reluctant to go public with their concerns because it could hurt their chances for promotion. Others know that whatever evidence they offer will probably be dismissed as “chauvinism.” Simons refers to a “reality gap” between supporters and opponents of women in combat. Supporters of women in combat make many assumptions that have never been tested, while opponents are usually driven by personal experience in combat units.

The Obama administration should stop this rush toward adopting foolish, unrealistic, and dangerous feminist ideas such as assigning women to direct military combat.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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