There is a scene in the Hollywood Blockbuster hit “Titanic,” when the massive ship once thought unsinkable began to sink deep into the abyss of the North Atlantic after hitting an iceberg. When it became apparent that they had to abandon-ship, the crew began to lower down the ship’s limited supply of life-boats with the dreadful knowledge that the life-boats were grossly insufficient to accommodate all on board. However, the crew made sure that the women and children had first-priority.
What is more salient about such a customary decision on the part of the crew of the “Titanic” to save women and children first was, such an action is viewed almost universally as optimal. Moving to the battlefield, the deliberate targeting of woman and children have always been frowned upon throughout human history, often depending on who has been victimized. As a result, the Geneva-Convention who governs the Laws of War prohibits the targeting of women and children during times of war amongst other prohibitions.
Recently, the Obama Administration working with the Defense Department lifted the prohibition preventing women from fighting on the front lines. An act which in essence would allow women to fight on the front lines alongside men officially. But is this act truly progressivism in its concept or is this Presidential edict Detrimental Progressivism?
A measure designed for women to gain equity in an arena that most men possess aptitude for, I am more inclined to agree with the latter; war is the domain of men and it should remain so. Have we reached a point in our civilization where it’s acceptable to have our sisters, mothers, and daughters on the front-lines fighting our wars? While in the noble search for gender equality, has society and men in particular forgotten our historic obligation to protect our women?
Politically correct or not, women are the weaker sex of our specie physically, no amount of legislation is going to change the fact that men on average, due to our biological make up are indeed stronger and more violent than women. What’s next, are we going to put a female in the same boxing ring as a male or allow women’s basketball teams to play men’s for the sake of gender equality? I am convinced the US Military has a long way to go as far as gender equity are concerned, but putting our women on the front lines where they may inevitably be susceptible to capture or rape, I am afraid is a step too far, and it does very little in my opinion to promote gender equality in the US Military.
Progressivism or equality doesn’t mean needlessly ignoring the laws of our biology or nature to prove a particular point of view. There is no doubt that women can do pretty much anything men can, but each sex possesses an aptitude which may be specific to our gender. For example, women on average are more nurturing than men. The same goes that men are better suited for the spheres of war or the construction of things.
Furthermore, soldiers on the front-lines often live in close and less than idea conditions; and often their gear weighs 80 lbs or more. Is the US Military supposed to lower its standards just to accommodate women on the front-lines For I don’t envision a female soldier being able to carry her injured male colleague who weighs over two hundred pounds on her shoulders to safety.
I am not oblivious to the fact that women are already fighting on the front-lines protecting supplies and engaging the enemy in fire-fights. But the reason for this is because both the war in Iraq and Afghanistan don’t have a designated front line. The front-line is everywhere, made evermore treacherous by IEDs and constant ambushes by the enemy.
Women are now fighter pilots and submariners, all that is well; for I fully support a woman’s role in all aspects of the US Military except those that would put them directly on the front-line. Times may have changed but it should never change to a degree that society forgets that it’s our moral obligation to protect our women in-spite of their capabilities. There is no doubt in my mind that lifting the ban on women fighting on the front-lines was a benevolent act by the Obama Administration in its inception.
After-all, women played a crucial role helping re-elect President Obama to a second term. I am sure apart from his belief in the nobility of the said measure, this is his way of rewarding their support. But the policy is riddled with the grossness of naivety, and it shall prove more than a challenge to implement.
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