Reflections on Women in Combat

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Reflections on Women in CombatOne of the most earthshaking decisions of our country in 2015 occurred on December 3, when Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter declared that all combat jobs would become open to women with “no exceptions.”

While it is horrible enough that women will be exposed to the horrors of war, the shock waves from this decision will entirely change the cultural landscape of America.

The simple reality is that women are not men and vice versa. This easily observable fact used to be apparent to everyone, young, old, smart, unintelligent, good, bad, boys, girls, men and women. Today with our loss of the light of reason, our political leaders and millions of others accept the absurd and, as a result, effortlessly reject observable natural and scientific truth.

Mortal or grave sin deteriorates the use of reason in the soul. Repeated or serial mortal sin, so common today, degrades the reason to the point that the absurd is accepted as truth, and obvious natural and supernatural truths are questioned and doubted. Those who live a life in sanctifying grace have a clear vision of objective truth, of that which is obvious, and sometimes that which is not so obvious.

How can anyone with their faculties intact believe that a woman can do what a man can do in the military? Our technology falsely convinces us that our ladies can do anything a man can. If our technology ever breaks down, or, if it is degraded due to bureaucrats and politicians who are opposed to our military, we will then tragically see what happens when it becomes hand to hand, when soldiers have to engage in manual efforts instead of relying on machines and gadgets to do some of their tasks.

To see the absurdity of women in combat one has only to peruse numerous titles written by combat veterans of what combat is actually like. An example is, Shadow of the Sword: A Marine’s Journey of War, Heroism, and Redemption by Jeremiah Workman who was a U.S. Marine fighting house-to-house during the battle for Fallujah. In the heat of battle Sergeant Workman dragged, with heroic efforts, a wounded, dying fellow Marine. Dragging a fellow warrior to safety, under enemy fire, loaded down with body armor, weapons, and the like, was an almost impossible task for this fit, strong young man. To do what Sergeant Workman did would be very difficult for most men, but an impossibility for women.

An American Knight - The Life of John W. Ripley, USMC book
An American Knight: The Life of John W. Ripley, USMC, by Norman J. Fulkerson.

The late Vietnam combat veteran, Colonel John W. Ripley, USMC, testified extensively about this before the Presidential Commission on the Assignment of Women in the Armed Forces on June 26, 1992. His arguments are as sound today as they were then. This testimony is reproduced in its entirety in the biography of Colonel Ripley titled, An American Knight by Norman J. Fulkerson.

This is not to question the sincerity of ladies who genuinely love America and who want to serve and defend her. We should, however, serve according to our capacity, not according to our desire. If our capacity does not match our desire we, or others, may suffer, even die, or cause others to die as a result. Individuals too young or too old, or, in bad health, or who cannot meet the physical requirements also have natural limits to their abilities—despite their desires to the contrary. But to put our desire above the good of the whole is self-serving, a bad trait for any military. When coupled with our lack of capability it can be destructive to the whole unit.

America truly is the only nation militarily capable of defending the freedom-loving nations of the world. Such an important responsibility should not be jeopardized for the sake of societal experimentation or transformation. So many in this country have forgotten that if we fall, in a greater of lesser degree, everyone falls.

Despite the serious threats of this policy to our national defense, even graver are the artificial changes to the nature of men and women in America.

Today some consider the notion of femininity to be a bad word. Femininity traditionally has been a term used to show great respect to ladies. Respect towards femininity admiringly recognizes the genuine and unique gifts and talents that God has given to women alone. Women bear and raise children. Fathers and husbands help, but it is the mother who has the overwhelmingly greatest influence on children. Women provide the anchor for a healthy, stable home life, or at least they used to when marriages and families were intact.

Women in Combat — Why We Should Not Send Our Mothers, Wives and Daughters to Fight Our Wars

Women, along with children, are much of the reason why soldiers risk their lives. Men have a natural sense of protection towards women. They want to bring the fight to the enemy and not wait for the enemy to invade their homes. Decades of radical feminism have not entirely been able to eliminate this. This natural sense, while very good in an all-male combat unit, will become a liability in a military that allows women to participate in combat.

With the founding of the Church by Our Lord Jesus Christ, society was transformed regarding women. Before, women were largely treated as slaves or chattel. The Church charged men, who are physically stronger, to treat women with deference and respect. Saint Paul admonishes men to “love your wives, as Christ also loved the Church” (Ephesians 5:25).

During the Middle Ages knights were commanded, as part of their sworn code, to protect and defend women. This was in sharp contrast to the pagan treatment of women before the Catholic transformation of Europe. The third commandment of the Code of Chivalry states, “Thou shalt respect all weaknesses and shalt constitute thyself the defender of them.”

We see in a good number of societies today that women are still treated as slaves and chattel. Societies with a Christian past are the ones where women are treated with the greatest respect.

As a result of devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, women in general and virtuous women in particular benefited from this devotion. Women had the opportunity to imitate Our Lady and Her virtues. Men saw in their mothers, sisters and wives, a reflection, even if in a small way, of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The view of women changed from possessions to persons to admire, to protect, and to love with the virtues of purity and charity.

Women in combat who will be forced to engage in the ugliness of war may cause a return to the pre-Christian treatment of women. If women really are not different from men, then instead of the virtuous, the stronger will dominate.

Some day if a major war takes place, the draft will undoubtedly be reinstated. Since all combat positions are now open to women, what will stop our wives and daughters from being drafted? It will only take one person to bring suit. If men can be drafted why can’t women, since there are no longer limitations to their roles in the military?

This cultural shift in America will not only affect the feminine half of America, it will have adverse effects on both sexes.

Of course those who hate traditional marriage and the traditional family desire these radical changes for our country so that the last remaining vestiges of Christian Civilization may be destroyed.

Let’s reflect upon and consider the radical changes America will face if this policy continues without opposition. Let us not participate in the boiling frog strategy before it is too late to jump out of the frying pan.

Let’s stand up and do all that we can to protect the wholesomeness of femininity in America, that femininity that provides strong anchors for our society, without which we will become just another crumbling, barbaric state.

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