The Pentagon officially lifted the ban on women in combat on Wednesday. And the entire world applauded this historic move towards equality. Wait, no. That's not what happened at all. Rather, wingnuts and supposedly "moderate" conservatives came out of the woodwork in droves to slam the decision, which was merely a formality, since women have already been giving life and limb fighting in the military. The critics' hysteria would have been a totally appropriate response to, say, a decision to ban all men from the military. Here are some of the most batshit crazy reactions to women in combat.
Marine infantryman Ryan Smith warned in a Wall Street Journal Op-Ed that a Marine will "defecate inches from his seated comrade's face." He continued:
"Societal norms are a reality, and their maintenance is important to most members of a society. It is humiliating enough to relieve yourself in front of your male comrades; one can only imagine the humiliation of being forced to relieve yourself in front of the opposite sex.... Despite the professionalism of Marines, it would be distracting and potentially traumatizing to be forced to be naked in front of the opposite sex, particularly when your body has been ravaged by lack of hygiene."
Denny Burk of the Southern Baptist Convention exclaimed, "Everyone in America ought to be scandalized by this news, but I'm wondering if it will even register on the radar of anyone's conscience. To the extent that it doesn't, we reveal just how far gone we are as a people. God help us."
The always nuanced Tucker Carlson of of the equally nuanced Daily Caller tweeted, "Feminism's latest victory: the right to get your limbs blown off in war. Congratulations." He also tweeted, "The administration boasts about sending women to the front lines on the same day Democrats push the Violence Against Women Act." I guess Tucker's a little confused about the difference between violence against women and equal rights for women. In all fairness, a lot of conservatives are confused by anything remotely related to women. Maybe I'll write a post explaining the difference between domestic violence and serving in the army. It could be really enlightening for misogynists around the world.
David Frum said the move would mean "steady downward pressure on military qualifications - reductions in strength and endurance requirements" and warned that female soldiers would be raped, since "The people we are likely to meet on the next battlefield are people who use rape and sexual abuse as actual tools of politics." Interestingly, he fails to mention the rape threat these women face from their colleagues. (A female soldier in combat zones is more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire.)
American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer tweeted this gem: "Problem in military not equality but inequality: only way women can qualify for combat is by lowering physical standards." And this: "Women in combat will not work. God did not design the female frame with the necessary strength and stamina." And this: "Obama putting women in combat is part of an intentional plan on his part to feminize and weaken the U.S. military."
Allen West tweeted "Women in combat billets? Another misconceived lib vision of fairness and equality." He also wrote on his Facebook wall that this was an, "insidious policy decision," and reminded us that "GI Jane was a movie and should not be the basis for a policy shift." And he made the following stupid analogy on Anderson Cooper: "I have to tell you, if this is the case, then why do we have separate hockey leagues? Women should be out there playing ice hockey with the guys in the NHL. We should not have a WNBA. I can't shoot a three-pointer, but there are ladies who could certainly take me to the hoop. Maybe they should be competing with Kobe Bryant." (Watch West debate retired General Rick Hillier of the Canadian Forces on Anderson Cooper 360 here.) Also, does West really expect us to take his military policy advice seriously? This is a man who risked the lives of American troops when he unlawfully detained an Iraqi prisoner and fired a pistol at point blank range above the man's head. He was fined $5,000 by the Army for abusing the prisoner.
Joe Scarborough said, "There's a reason why there are no women in the NFL.... There's a reason why there are no women in Major League Baseball. There's a reason why there are no women in, you know, most male-centered professional sports. There is a difference physically between men and women." He also added, "I'll be damned, if we find out that the Pentagon is lowering standards for politically correct reasons." If so, "then the blood of dead Americans in future battles will be on their hands."
Faith and Freedom Coalition head Ralph Reed said, "putting women in combat situations is the latest in a series of moves where political correctness and liberal social policy have trumped sound military practice."
Elaine Donnelly of the Center for Military Readiness stated, "The administration has a pattern of irresponsible actions like this using the military to advance a social agenda.... This kind of a social experiment is a dangerous one."
Aaron Ahlert of FrontPageMag said the Obama administration was "forcing gender radicalism down America's throat" and that the decision is "sure to have deadly consequences."
Penny Nance of Concerned Women for America made this totally incoherent statement:
News of Defense Secretary Leon Panetta's intent to lift the long-standing ban on women serving in direct combat is further proof that this administration simply does not care about the issues about which the majority of women care. Once again, their interest on women issues is driven by special interest groups. The point of the military is to protect our country. Anything that distracts from that is detrimental. Our military cannot continue to choose social experimentation and political correctness over combat readiness. While this decision is not unexpected from this administration, it is still disappointing. Concerned Women for America (CWA) and its more than half-a-million members around the country will continue to do all we can to see that our men and women in uniform are governed with the respect and resources needed to do the hard task of fighting for and protecting our freedoms.
Religious Right Angry over 'Dangerous' Decision to End Ban on Women in Combat [Right Wing Watch]
Allen West rips call for women in combat [Politico]
Morning Joe Clashes Over Women In Combat: ‘There's A Reason Why There Are No Women In The NFL' [Mediaite]
David Frum: Women in combat will push down military qualifications [Raw Story]
Ryan Smith: The Reality That Awaits Women in Combat [Wall Street Journal]