Christian Feminism? (VI)
We have been seeing how profoundly the mid-1960s and 1970s placed their stamps on both Church and society. It would not be saying too much to state—emphatically—that they were watershed years, but not necessarily in the good sense. During the rise of Feminism a number of views regarding women were put forward and even though they were not accepted in toto by all women and certainly not by all Christian women, there was and there is a traceable connection of thoughts and actions.
As often as not, we far too rarely stop and reflect upon the origins of our thoughts. We simply “have” them—or they have us—and we’re not sure where they came from. When we do pause and reflect, we might very well conclude that they are not derived from any one source but rather are the products of a multitude of influences. This is, in all likelihood, correct.
In the first five installments on this subject, I have chronicled some of the secular and ecclesiastical influences that have propelled us to where we are today. Not all of them have been positive in nature. In fact, it’s safe to say that whether we’re dealing with either the secularists or our ecclesiastical institutions we have been more deluded than we have been dealing with reality and we have followed many rabbit trails. One example will suffice. The secularists tried to teach us that boys play with guns and trucks and girls play with dollies because society has conditioned them to do so. That is to say, they are simply products of their environments.
Yet with all the “research” and the social, do-gooder engineering boys still prefer trucks and guns and girls of feminists still like Barbie. But hardcore activists and ideologues are not satisfied with a few paltry inconclusive results. They want more and more they went after—with help. In the last installment I mentioned what a key role former-President Jimmy Carter and his wife played in the rise of Feminism and the destruction of the family. Here I’ll just reiterate that it was Carter who sponsored, encouraged, and supported various conferences on the “families.” Do you see the subtlety here? Carter was not predisposed to concentrate on strengthening the fabric of the nuclear family—singular—but rather to impose a concept of “families” on the nation that opened the door for much of the nonsense that we’re facing today in our same-sex “unions” and the cultural war about homosexual marriage.
Carter’s support of Feminism has, no doubt, suffered from unintended consequences, but, at the same time, has also caused American society and the Church to suffer from some very intention consequences as well. These intended consequences have harmed us rather than helped us, and yet the ideologues are still pushing their agendas and few are standing up to them and crying “Foul!” Let me give you an example that few like to discuss: women in the military and on our police forces because these two go hand and hand and are only separated by gradations of violence.
In the last issue I mentioned how the Carter administration strategically placed a number of women, who had never served in the military, in our Department of Defense. There was no substantial rationale for such a move other than it suited Carter’s ideology. At the same time, it was Carter who forced—yes, that’s the correct word—into our service academies, the Air Force Academy being the first sacrificial lamb. Prior to Carter’s tinkering with our military academies and our military, General Douglas MacArthur had addressed the corps of cadets at West Point and had said in the course of his address, “Your mission remains fixed, determined, inviolable—it is to win our wars. Everything else in your professional career is but corollary to this vital dedication. All other public purposes…will find others for their accomplishment; but you are the ones who are trained to fight; yours is the profession of arms.” MacArthur delivered his stirring address in 1962, a year before I entered The Citadel.
My grandfather obtained a copy of that speech and gave it to me to read. Even without the certainty that I wanted to make the military a career, I had some recognition that I was about to enter an all-male institution with an outstanding tradition, pride, esprit de corps, and a ton of testosterone. MacArthur’s speech spoke to my heart and senses of pride and masculinity. When I graduated in 1967 El Cid was still an all-male institution. That would not change until the ACLU, social engineers, feminists, and the Carter influence was injected into the system. Slowly, but surely, the male dragons of military service academies as well as The Citadel and V.M.I. were slain. Those bastions of male warriors were infiltrated by “the feminist principles of equality and androgyny.”
The clear intention was—and still is—to feminize our young men by placing women in these academies not caring one whit if America’s males lost their masculine warrior image. In fact, some celebrated the possible disappearance of that image. Even though the feminists would have us believe that the transition of women into the military schools was virtually seamless and received widespread acceptance, the opposite is really the case. “Male students at all of the academies registered overwhelming disapproval of the changes.” The criticisms, carping, and general griping about the inclusion of women took myriad forms, but “The most common complaint heard from male cadets and midshipmen was that integration had lowered the academies’ physical standards. Physically, the women simply could not keep up.” That’s the unvarnished truth.
Now I’m going to say some things that feminists and Christian feminists are not going to like, but I really don’t care. You can call me any name you want, but flattery will get you nowhere. What I’m about to say has been said previously by a non-Christian woman—not that it makes any difference to me—and she has said it quite well. To a number of my PCA colleagues who see no problem with women in the service academies and in the military Stephanie Gutmann and I suggest that “Maybe because civilians are increasingly disconnected from the concrete details of soldiering” is your problem. If you haven’t been in it, you shouldn’t be for women in combat. If you haven’t been in the military I cannot imagine why you would want to speak out on what is so typically and blatantly a feminist agenda that has weakened and continues to weaken our country. Quite simply put, putting women into a place that, by and large, trains warriors goes like this: “A lot of the problems had to do with the fact that we were dropping a softer, weaker, shorter, lighter-boned creatures into a world scaled for the male body.” Yikes! That sounds like there are differences between males and females!
What Gutmann is saying translates into the following cold, hard facts: “The average woman is about five inches shorter than the average man, she has 55 to 60 percent less upper body strength, a lower center of gravity, a higher fat-to-muscle ratio, lighter bones that are more subject to fracture, a heart that can’t move oxygen to the muscles as fast as a man’s (i.e., 20 percent less aerobic capacity), and a rather more complicate lower abdomen full of reproductive equipment.” Nevertheless, the feminists and other social engineers that given enough time and money America can eventually produce a female Rambo.
The late COL David Hackworth—a soldier’s soldier—had an online newsletter called The Voice of the Grunt. His viewpoint was that you do the job—whoever you are or you get out of the proverbial kitchen. He went on to say, “I recollect that almost 80 percent of the injuries (to women) were lower extremity damage, broken and cracked fibula or tibia bones, stress cracks, etc. Many, many claims for foot injuries too. That told me that women don’t have the LEGS to do what soldiers do, haul a** over hilltops, diddy through jungles, carrying ammo and radios, and shooting the s*** out of pursuers.” And yet a number of do-good, feel-good pastors believe that women in combat isn’t a bad thing at all, when in point of fact it severely weakens the unit and its ability to accomplish the mission effectively. This is not to “diss” women, it is simply fact.
Gutmann’s research—by the way, Gutmann served in the military—concludes that “The hospitalization rate among females was more than tenfold than among males. The rate among white, nonhispanic, junior enlisted female soldiers was more than 15 times higher than that of the Army overall.” In order to lessen the instances of these injuries and lowered cases of self-esteem—the Oprahization of America—those Army units mandated to have gender-integrated boot camp allow women to pass the physical tests “with a lower grade.” In a number of cases, the armed services has “created dual obstacle courses, the easier one for the women, and many have shifted emphasis to more cerebral skills like map-reading, first aid, and putting on protective gear.”
When you think about it, this kind of approach makes perfect sense. If you’ve ever visited Normandy where the D-Day invasion occurred, you’ve no doubt noticed that the Germans had special, easier obstacles for the women that accompanied our soldiers along with a special protected map-reading, first aid, and protective gear area designated: Frauen. Right.
The upshot of all of this finagling with those who are the warriors in our land has led to the rewriting of a number of official regulations “to compensate for weaker soldiers and to avoid the spectacle of female failure—a woman attempting to do a task the way it is described in a training manual and failing.” This is patently absurd and yet some in the PCA seem oblivious to the reality of how much weaker we are now after the Carter Oprahization of the military and military schools.
When integration began at Annapolis, surveys of the midshipmen “showed that 81 percent of upperclassmen and 74 percent of plebes still opposed integration.” Moreover, the drop out rate on morning runs was 23% for females and less than 3% for the males. “In the seventh week of training, 26.3 percent of female cadets reported for physical ‘reconditioning’ instead of he morning run, compared to 5.6 percent of men. Women reported to sick call (XM-pooh-pooh) an average of 6.8 times per female cadet, compared to the male average of 1.7 times. They suffered more than ten times as many stress fractures as men…. Even after a year of regular physical training, West Point women in the first integrated class suffered five times as many injuries as men during field training. The following year, the injury rate for women in field training was fourteen times the rate for men.”I tell you all this because many of the edicts of Feminism have filtered into the Church of Christ and are alive and well in our “discussions” on the roles and places of women in the Church. It is the wise denomination that goes to Scripture to decide these matters rather than accepting the tenets of a world that we all agree is going to hell in a hand basket. If society is as bad and immoral as we say it is, why in the world do we insist on following it anyway? In our next installment I’ll flesh what I’ve said here out even more.
 See my criticism of “research” in my blog “Whatever Happened to My Country?” at http://rongleason.blogspot.com.
 Brian Mitchell, Women in the Military, Flirting with Disaster, (Washington, D.C.: Regnery Publishing, 1998), p. 55.
 Ibid., 57. Italics mine.
 Stephanie Gutmann, A Kinder,Gentler Military, How Political Correctness Affects Our Ability to Win Wars, (San Francisco: Encounter Books, 2000), p. 246.
 Ibid., 247.
 He didn’t say it that nicely.
 Gutmann, AKGM, 256. Italics mine.
 Mitchell, WM, 57.
 The Citadel version of “Excused from military duty” otherwise known as XMD.
 Mitchell, WM, 58. All italics mine.