Saturday, April 07, 2007

Reading Between the Lines

I saw two interesting items on Channel 4 news this evening.

The first was an interview with a female military officer called Major Judith Webb. She stated that the levels of combat fitness in the British Army had been lowered in order to allow women into the ranks. Speaking of women, she said “We are weaker, and levels of combat fitness have been lowered in order to accommodate the needs of gender equality. A colleague of mine is a PT instructor, and he said to me, ‘You would laugh if you knew what the levels of combat fitness are now’, which I find very sad”. Major Webb is obviously a very intelligent and responsible officer, because she puts military readiness first, and is not blinded by political ideology.

The second item was about the annual Oxford and Cambridge boat-race, which took place today. Non-British readers might not be familiar with this. It is an annual rowing event which takes place on the river Thames in London, between teams of students from the two universities. The story highlighted the fact that one of the teams had a female cox, which isn’t so unusual nowadays. The job of the cox is to steer the boat and motivate the crew. In some ways, a female cox is an advantage, because she will be smaller and lighter than a man, and so less of a dead weight. As I watched the footage of burly young men pulling oars, I wondered why there has never been a woman oarsman on either team. The answer is obviously that they are not strong enough. Rowing is a task which depends primarily on upper-body strength, and women will be at an inherent disadvantage. Any team which fields women in its crew is likely to lose. Despite decades of feminist ideology, the unyielding contours of reality cannot be ignored. If you want to win, you need an all male crew. That’s just the way it is.

Perhaps you’ve guessed my conclusion already.

Reading between the lines, it seems that although women are too puny to row in a boat race, they are not too puny to fight in a battle. But only if we make the battle easy for them. I hope potential enemy nations take this into account if we ever go to war again.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

IN Israel women fight next to women, with the same standards.

Heretic said...

I'm not sure what you mean by that. Women are held to the same standards as other women? Er...OK then.