I don't know how many of you guys heard about this in the news today, but today 4 women filed a suit against the Department of Defense over the rules that exclude women in combat. My college class discussed this issue today and of no consensus was met. Just wonder how you guys or gals feel about this issue. Should they let the ladies fight? If yes, in what capacity? Heres an article about it incase you missed it. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/27/women-in-combat-defense-de...
I've heard that before. How often are female shooters deployed with SOF units? Is that a normal occurence, or a special circumstance ? My understanding was that there were some SOF Units, particularly Teir 1, that didn't accept women at all -- SEALs, SFOD-D, DevGru, Green Berets, Air Force Pararescue, etc.
There was a blonde chick on The Unit in Season 4. Heh.
They aren't shooters/operators/whatever you want to call them. SOF units have the same requirements for support as any other unit. Think of the shooters as infantry, and everyone else, as everyone else. Females are deployed as support elements, sometimes as direct support elements. Just like any other support element, they take a backseat on raids, but do at times end up in the mix. MARSOC in fact, actively recruits females for very specific direct support roles.
They're out there, and they're integrated with the teams, and they're doing their jobs.
As Shane pointed out, you have the shooters (infantry) and everyone else is there to ensure that the shooters have what they need to do their job effectively. Sometimes that means going out with them, sometimes it doesn't. With that said, just leaving the FOB,COP, what have you, in most cases puts you at risk of being attacked. That is why they came out with the Combat Action Badge, because so many non-infantry soldiers are becoming involved in direct combat and previously weren't recognized for it the way infantry is.
"The tip of the spear" isn't necessarily the most dangerous place to be, anymore. We have women in a lot of the most dangerous roles in our wars.
I'm not sure what difference it makes if they're sent into a town for the purpose of having a firefight or if they're sent into the same town for another reason when we know that there's a high probability that they're going to wind up in a firefight.
I haven't read the Complaint that inspired the original classroom discussion and post, but a lot of money can be on the line, over a service woman's career. Different assignments get different pay and benefits, different promotion opportunities. From a lawyer's standpoint, this might not be about "women in combat" literally. As people are pointing out, that ship has sailed.
It might be about pay scales and the like. If so, you might be able to resolve the complaint by changing the pay regulations while keeping the assignment regulations the same. That would put equal monetary value on men-only assignments v. open-to-women assignments, and maybe we don't like that, either. But it'd resolve some of the facial legal issues.
[Obviously, there are some open-to-women assignments that pay the same as some men-only assignments. The disparity has to do with rank and time-in-service, if I understand correctly.]
We have women successfully working on the "Most Dangerous Two Acres", carrier flight decks.
Administratively, there are some serious issues with women in combat. Being in a combat role isn't optional for men. They can, and do, make men take those roles. If women can be in those roles, will they make all women in the military meet the physical standards for them? That might DQ a lot of women who are otherwise doing great work in "non-combat" roles. Should they all be kicked out? Or, will each job have its own fitness standards? Then, can men who would prefer a support role just make sure that they fall below the fitness standards for the job that they don't want?
I'm fine with kicking them out if they don't make it physically. Marines already do so. But, they should be given a fair chance and proper amount of time to achieve those standards.
And maybe they wouldn't have to make men take those assignments if they let women. This is the flip side to what I write above about why someone would want those assignments.
No. I'm sure there are plenty of women who can do 40 pushups. I'm saying it's not an apples to apples comparison. A woman who can do 40 pushups is probably stronger and more athletic than a man who can do the same.
It would seem two questions arise. 1. Is it good militarily to have women fight? Well, who decides that? Military types or civilian types? Soldiers or politicians? People seem to agree that it is impossible to know what will happen unless it is done. If there is a need for women, or a use for them, who can know that? Does whoever have the knowledge also have the authority? That would settle that--presumably experts must deal with this.
2. Is it just to have women fight? This is a political question; it seems like an obvious problem of equality. What is more common in thinking about justice than equality? What cannot be solved most easily by equality? Especially in America it has a sense of inevitability about it. What is there even to discuss? It's either done or in the doing. Is anyone willing to argue that they think in the future women, far from further integration in American arms, will be kicked out?
It is not obvious to me that any discovery of weakness in women ought to lead to the conclusion that women should be kicked out from any particular service or position. American arms are created in Congress, to my knowledge, & controlled by a democratic political system that might well prefer justice to efficiency. Why not? American arms are owned publicly, so to speak; the people are supposed to be sovereign. Therefore, it is a matter of the right to serve, if you feel like it. That seems to be why people choose the military, but the military cannot compel them. At best, the military can reject people, but cannot talk of any duty in the citizens to join...
It's either done or in the doing.
So then the question becomes, how best to get the doing, done.