Ryan Smith over at the Wall Street Journal thinks that women can’t handle combat. He seems to be preoccupied with women’s bodily functions during combat.
The invasion was a blitzkrieg. The goal was to move as fast to Baghdad as possible. The column would not stop for a lance corporal, sergeant, lieutenant, or even a company commander to go to the restroom. Sometimes we spent over 48 hours on the move without exiting the vehicles. We were forced to urinate in empty water bottles inches from our comrades.
See Mr. Smith, women don’t need to stop at a restroom to take a leak. News flash bozo, women and men take a shit in the same way. I’ve been in situations where it has been a couple of weeks between baths and was no worse for wear. Perhaps a little smelly, as was everyone else. It sure does feel nice to have a long hot shower after spending a couple of weeks in the woods with no shower facilities, only a rag and a container with about a half gallon of water. You can get fairly clean with this. But somehow, I don’t think pissing or shitting is really on his mind. I think the thought of women having periods absolutely scares the living shit out of him. Poor delicate flower.
Yes, a woman is as capable as a man of pulling a trigger. But the goal of our nation’s military is to fight and win wars. Before taking the drastic step of allowing women to serve in combat units, has the government considered whether introducing women into the above-described situation would have made my unit more or less combat effective?
You know women have fought in practically every war that has been waged throughout history. And have performed just as good as the men. When your village or town is getting overrun, no one has time to worry about who is holding and shooting the guns. And why would women automatically be ineffective during combat? You know who I think would be ineffective during combat? A man who is traumatized at the sight of a woman taking a leak, possibly even standing up to do so.
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. In the reverse, it would be painful to witness a member of the opposite sex in such an uncomfortable and awkward position. Combat effectiveness is based in large part on unit cohesion. The relationships among members of a unit can be irreparably harmed by forcing them to violate societal norms.
Women have been taking care of the injured and sick for centuries and have not freaked out at bodily functions. Poor Mr. Smith, is he saying that he will have a case of the vapours at the sight of naked people, especially those of the opposite sex? Grow up.
Looking at Christian dominionism from the outside, I observe that its adherents seem to be very emotionally immature. The reliance upon unquestioning obedience, the absolutism, the simplistic philosophy, the irrationality, and the anger and lack of understanding towards those who have different viewpoints are the behaviors of a small child or an immature adult.
The reliance upon heaven and hell to motivate good behavior is like a small child needing punishment and rewards from a parent. This is exactly like the behavior of a five year old. Why can’t they do good for its own sake rather than to avoid punishment or to get a reward? Its all about themselves, not others. Luckily for me, I did not grow up in that sort of environment. It seems from others that I have met who did grow up in that environment, it would be very hard to get out of. A couple of people I know tell me that they matured out of this type of Christianity. They no longer attend these types of churches.
An example of someone who has changed is the Rev. Carlton Pearson. In this video, observe his earlier preaching style, compared to after he deconverted from dominionist, fundamentalist Christianity. He almost seems like a raving maniac in the earlier footage compared with the more thoughtful, tolerant and mature style he has now. They have declared him heretic and he lost most of his congregation. But I’m sure that he can live with himself much easier now. Money and power are not everything. NPR also did a special on him in This American Life in 2005.
I think this story illustrates exactly that dominionist Christianity is all about power with money a close second. These preachers are very often wealthy and seem to gravitate towards trying to influence and control politicians or their flock members. And those people that I know that are in dominionist fundamentalist Christian churches seem to crave being controlled and parented. It must have been very difficult for Pearson to give up all of the power, prestige, and wealth he had in his church.
In future posts I’ll continue this theme relating to both family members and co-workers. I’ve had encounters where the person has either tried to control me directly, lost interest in friendship when they realized I would never convert to Christianity, threatened me with death, or shown incredible ignorance of their own religion.
In We Stand Awed at the Heights, PZ Myers over at Pharyngula really gives Stanley Fish a good verbal once over. There is just so much in this post which I agree with and PZ states much more eloquently than I ever could. Especially the following:
What we atheists are saying is that we need to turn away from those powerless rationalizations, no matter how poetic they might be, and recognize that their power and their appeal flows from their humanity, not their religiosity. Forget god, that empty hulk, that great vacuum that humanity has stocked with its fears and dreams, and look at what we have created and felt instead. When someone weeps over a dead child or creates a great poem, it should matter not at all what some priest imagines his pantheon is doing. Take your eyes off your hallucination of heaven—what’s real are that woman’s tears, that child’s triumph, that grain of sand, that bird on wing. The meaning is derived from the reality of what we see and feel, not some convoluted vapor and self-serving puffery about an abstract concept like “god”.
I’ve known a older, married woman who spent her life thinking that the Rapture would happen at any moment. She spent most of her life caught up in this warped dream, never really making much of her life. She let her house get run down and unlivable after her husband died. Why waste the money when Jesus is coming any day. When she died, her children could not even sell the house. The house was in such bad shape it was condemned by the city. She had no insurance or burial policies at all. Her children had to borrow money to bury her. She was a devote of the PTL club, who probably got most of her money.
Being caught up in the dream of heaven as she was, is as narcissistic as one could possibly get. It is all about the big reward for one’s self, screw everyone else. This is what I think in my most overly cynical moments. Most of these people are probably genuinely afraid of death and are desperately hoping to live in the afterlife. What is really sad is that they waste their only shot at life, dreaming for what is to come.