Monday, January 30, 2012

Thoughts Shared Only in Private

Time for a guest post on a topic that can set people on edge ... but this is the blogosphere; so there you go.

As the front porch will know once our guest's post starts - his opinion is almost the opposite of mine in many aspects. That's OK, the MIDN below holds an opinion that many do - many good men do.

I don't agree with a lot of what he says - but I think his opinion should be put out there if for no other reason than this; leaders need to know that a lot of men in the military think this way. This doesn't make them bad, evil, or not worthy to serve. It just is - and the time to think about how to work with people like this isn't when you find it in the Fleet. Ponder now so you can lead them tomorrow.

My recommendation to this young man and others like him is to allocate more time for PT. Naval Special Warfare is one of the few places he will be able to serve in the near future without women. That and USMC infantry.

For those who think this man should suck it up or go home - I say you are wrong. We need men who think like the below - we just to make sure we find the right specialty to meet their personality type.

Midshipman, the floor is yours.

I don’t like following women. There – I said it.

The thing is, yeah, I joined the military to serve my country, and I know that she did, too. But really, I joined the military because I had to, to, you know, to prove that I’m a man. To become a man, really. I saw the pictures of the Marines in their dress blues, with their broad shoulders and severe faces. I saw them running over obstacles, firing guns, sweating, bleeding, faces contorted with effort and sweet agony. Proving themselves. And I wanted to be them. Not to serve my country, but to be a freaking badass.

How can she teach me that? She doesn’t know the first thing about being a man. I run faster than her; I do more pull-ups. True, she’s very professional (that seems to be the buzz-word these days, as if we operated in some sort of business), but she isn’t a man. I know she can do everything the same: she’s just as smart as a man, she loves her country just as much as a man, and we all know that running speed and physical strength aren’t really limiting factors for most jobs. But it’s still there. That thing that women can’t understand about being a man. Part of being a man is that wolf-pack mentality. I don’t want someone who’s merely smart and capable. I want that alpha-wolf who leads the pack through sheer physicality and masculinity. Of course ideally he would be smart, patient, just, kind, and so forth. But any leader, male or female, needs to be better than their subordinates. It’s why they’re called superiors. But if a woman is better than me, I can’t be a man. I can follow her, but I feel like my nuts have been chopped off. I feel like a cowed dog; like one of those little chihuahuas that upscale girls carry in their purse. What we forget is that those little pipsqueaks are the descendants of wolves. They were once vicious hunters that struck fear into the hearts of their prey, now reduced to dickless, domesticated freaks.

The military says I have to follow my leader, no matter what gender they are. And I will, and I’ll do my job, either way. Of course I will; I’ll keep my word to my country. But why is it so wrong for me to want someone who I can look up to? Why can’t I just follow a man, and feel like a wolf instead of a Chihuahua? Is this really just “my problem”?

407 comments:

1 – 200 of 407   Newer›   Newest»
Grumpy Old Ham said...

You're spot on with the title to this post.  That MIDN had better keep those doubleplusungood thoughts to himself, lest the Canoe U Diversity Diktat will find a way to run him out of town.  Heck, there's enough "hate speech" there for the Diversity Mafias to justify their funding through the next millenium...

Actus Rhesus said...

Sal,

even NSW has female combat support, some of whom are even department heads.

mbroughton53 said...

Hey Grumpy...whoever he is, he's already fucked! The Diktat will find him today. To bad, he woulda been one of the "Few good Men"!

butch said...

I dunno, the Western way of war has been mostly a men-only endeavor for ~2500 years.  Once you place "giving women an opportunity to [blank]" ahead of killing people and breaking things, game over.

I likes me the wimmins, and I treated them professionally when I was in the Navy, served with some good'uns too.  But no, not a good idea.

LBG said...

AR,
   Does a jg coming out of BUDS and follow on training work for the female combat support officer?  Certainly not when he is in the field.  But the mid does have a concern.  AR, you and Chick CDR are not the norm for females I have worked for or with.  I have run into the super sensitive females and the men that support that frame of mind. 
   Additionally, this young man's attitude is that of an alpha male, competitor, fighter, etc.  These are the guys though that seek, close and destroy the enemy.  You need aggression for that "job."  Super sensitivity, mamby pamby sissitude is not what we need to pound into our combat leaders.  And yes, it has been pounded into them.  What is sad, is that he can not voice his concerns in the open.  It would be possibly be grounds for a hostile work environment charge.  In theory, a woman can call it sexual harassment. 
   He has a point though, we market the Corps through UFC, and commercials during football games, etc.  If we emmasculate the young men who are to kill the enemy, they will be less effective. That is a disservice to the country.

Acquisition Mark said...

Could have been articulated a little better.  Here is my cut.  The male "Alpha-wolf" (we are not animals but we all know what he means) gets there by being more masculine, men and some women look up to that.  The female "Alpha-wolf" also gets there by being more masculine, neither men nor most women look up to that, some women might.  I worked under a woman that most would consider a tomboy, dyke, butch, whatever you want to call a person of that persuasion (short hair, tatoos, muscular, swagger, etc.).  She had a tough time getting anything but respect for her rank.  If you have not worked for a woman in an operational unit, you would probably not understand.

cdrsalamander said...

Of course they do - but they would not be leading that young man in combat. That is his issue when you boil it down.

Serge Gorodish said...

<span>I've had decades of experience working with midshipmen both male and female as well as officers at all levels, and over and over again I have found that those who talk most about guts and glory are the first ones to bail when the situation calls for attention to detail, patience, or creative thinking. I could cite several prominent examples by name (but I know better than to do so). These qualities are important even in the Special Forces--probably more so. Leadership has much more to do with thinking and communicating than with pull-ups. </span>

<span>BTW, if you want to see "sweating, bleeding, faces contorted with effort and sweet agony", check out a birthing room.</span>

Actus Rhesus said...

Tell the Mid to come talk to me when he's actually been in a combat zone.  Until then, as far as I'm concerned he's a schoolboy who needs to focus on his education, both academic and character.

CDR Norsk said...

This lad has a point - but also apparently has not worked for women like Darlene Iskara or Martha Herb, hard core divers back in the day, though but still quite attractive and female, who were tougher than 99% of men. I'm sure there are still some women of similar ilk around. And, I certainly have worked for many male combat leaders who were'nt my physical superiors in any way, but were still effective. Maybe not the ones you'd want with you in hand-to-hand, but ....there aren't many of those.
Maybe he should take up triathlon or ultrarunning and see just how fit and tough women can be. He might find he isn't as tough as he thinks he is, by comparison.

Sam Tarantole said...

Leaders are forged from experience and duress under fire. If a woman has met this head on and she and her troops survived, I follow her into hell. But if her abilities have her leading from behind, I would request transfer. That would go for a male who leads the same way.

Actus Rhesus said...

"if a woman is better than me, I can’t be a man" ... "is this really just my problem?"

Short answer? Yes.

Long Answer: I will be the first to agree that tokens, quotas, and catering are divisive and need to be stopped.  But you, Mid, are not arguing that women who can't perform should be removed (a statment with which I completely agree).  What you are saying is that even if a woman is performing, and in fact is performing BETTER than you, that you can't handle it and she should be removed so that you can "Feel better" about your masculinity.  Isn't that the exact kind of everyone gets a trophy namby pambyism that most of us criticize on this porch on a near daily basis?  Newsflash, the military is not about making you feel like a man.  It's about accomplishing the mission. 

Right now I have the honor to serve with men to whom the term war-hero is not an exaggeration.  And occasionally my job requires me to say "Sir, I don't think you should do that, and here's why"  And you know what? Never once have these warrior leaders said "well gee, I'd love to listen to you sweet tits, but you see, if I do, my men will think less of me"  or "well, that's good advice and all, but this guy over here runs faster than you, so I'm going to listen to him instead" But then, these men are tried, tested, and have nothing to prove to anyone. 

I've had good leaders and bad leaders of both genders, and it ain't the chromosome that makes the leader...it's character.  Now yes, some jobs have undeniable physical requirements.  I could not pass BUDS even if it were open to women.  Similarly, I'm probably a bad pick for saw gunner, and so I will never request these assignments, and will be the first to criticize if the necessary requirements are waived to get in a "first".  But again, you aren't protesting having to follow the unqualified...you just don't want to  follow a woman, full stop, regardless of the job, regardless of the qualifications.  Congratulations.  You are why the detestable diversity industry will continue to exist.

Also, for fuck's sake, can we please stop with the "I can do more pull ups so I'm a better leader" trope?  I'm very proud of your pullup score.  Now please meet me in open ocean, preferably at 60 feet below surface in sub 70 degree water with a 5mm wetsuit, high surge and a boat a mile away.

Pull ups ain't the only way to test mettle.

Actus Rhesus said...

Having worked in NSW, it's clear, all of the officers are physical machines.  But the ones who make major command are also extremely intellectual and thoughtful.

Sure some of them may play the role of the macho meathead when it suits their agenda, but make no mistake, there is a lot more to these leaders than their 5 mile run time and max bench.

LT B said...

Ya know, AR, one of this guy's issues, though, is probably the feminization of the force though.  Women on subs?  Good idea?  eh, I'm wondering in a fiscal environment what the pay off is.  Congress pushing women further into combat?  Eh, probably not such a good idea.  When we reduce standards to accomodate a dream or wish for political purposes, it does not make us a better fighting force.  Pull ups?  No, but running w/ your plates in, your rifle loaded and putting the bullets on target is a tiring evolution.  Should he feel less a man if he works w/ a woman?  Hell no, and if he is that insecure w/ his manhood, my guess is he would be "that" guy that will buy a sports care to compensate.  But, the double standards have hurt us as a force.  They are devisive and hurt some people personally.  I believe you set the standard and hold the standard, apply common sense and work from there.  But I am a dreamer.  :)

Byron said...

MIDN, if "Proving themselves. And I wanted to be them. Not to serve my country, but to be a freaking badass." is your goal in the Navy, then GET THE HELL OUT NOW. You will get someone killed with that dumb as dirt, macho all the way through your ears attitude. I won't care if you get killed, but just sure as hell, you WILL get someone else killed. So leave while you can, before you get someone killed. As far as women leaders go, I expect you'll find as many bad leaders as you will bad male leaders in proportion to each other.

Son, you need to get the grits out of your ears.

Actus Rhesus said...

I gues I just don't see how workign for a woman = emasculating, unless you are phenomenally insecure in your masculinity.

I agree with you that theer are women who are not pulling their weight, and I'm sorry you've had that experience.  People who don't make the grade, male or female, should be cut.

But again, this post isn't about not wanting to follow someone unqualified.  This is a post from a very immature Midshipman who seems to believe that running and bench pressing are all it takes to be a leader, and that there's no way he can follow a woman and still be a man.  Having led men in a warzone, I disagree.

Actus Rhesus said...

I gues I just don't see how workign for a woman = emasculating, unless you are phenomenally insecure in your masculinity.

I agree with you that theer are women who are not pulling their weight, and I'm sorry you've had that experience.  People who don't make the grade, male or female, should be cut.

But again, this post isn't about not wanting to follow someone unqualified.  This is a post from a very immature Midshipman who seems to believe that running and bench pressing are all it takes to be a leader, and that there's no way he can follow a woman and still be a man.  Having led men in a warzone, I disagree.

Actus Rhesus said...

you and I are on the exact same page.  If his argument had been "set standards that reflect the demands of the job and don't lower them for anybody" then I'd have no issue.  That's the way it should be.  If I can't do a job I shouldn't.  It's not sexist to assign people based on their strengths and weaknesses and in fact, makes us a stronger force. 

But that ain't what he's saying.  And I would argue someone that insecure in himself is a liability because he clearly has "something to prove" and that gets people killed.

Skippy-san said...

Absolutely no comment whatsoever. One beating a week is my limit anymore-and I got mine already. =-X

Actus Rhesus said...

also...holy typos, batman.

*stalks off to fill coffee*

CDR K said...

Masculinity comes from within.  He's still a teenager; time and experience will prove out whether he's got what it takes.  If he doesn't, I suppose he can blame it on mother.

FOD said...

Wow...all about you huh?  Are you sure you're cut out for the manly work? There's more teamwork required in those manly jobs than you might think, better learn that quick. But I digress.

"But any leader, male or female, needs to be better than their subordinates."

Nope.  A leader needs to be able to set the conditions for their subordinates to be successful. (Peers and seniors too - but that's another discussion).  

Actus Rhesus said...

I've always found the best mark of a leader to be the follow on successes of those they led.  The greatest moment for the sensei is when the student surpasses the master.

LT B said...

I've met men that were better typists than you chicky.  Feel defeminized?  :)

Actus Rhesus said...

I am clearly an inadeqaute specimen of womanhood.  (womynhood?  Wait...does hood carry a misogynistic undertone? Screw it.  I give up.) 

LT B said...

In fairness, he could be a prior enlisted Marine that made it in.  Several of the guys I work with, do not sound too terribly different from this guy, except they have a lot more eff bombs. 

Actus Rhesus said...

good point, though to me it read like someone who is talking the talk, but has never been required to walk the walk.  I would have expected more anecdotes from the field if they were a prior.

cdrsalamander said...

AR,
But you are a woman who knows her way around a weapon - and that is HOT .... wait, can I say that? Ungh, I'm in trouble again .....

Mike Lambert said...

I invite the Midshipman to visit with Captain Babette Bolivar, COS over at CNIC.  <span> She is a Master Diver in the Hall of Fame. Command Ashore. Command Afloat.  I would venture she might fit the bill for the kind of woman leader he needs to meet to change his mind.</span>

Mike Lambert said...

Or Captain Sara Joyner !!

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Full stop, as you like to say, on the scathing criticism of this young man's opinions. 

First, he hits on some very true and very primal themes of warrior leadership.  There is indeed an element of leading by physical example, and that is much more than looking sharp in your uniform.  In the world of a ground combat MOS, particularly at the small unit level, being a physical badass is something that garners respect and admiration.  So, yes, doing more pullups and lifting more and climbing obstacles faster does help make you a better leader.  I daresay not many of the negative comments are from people who have led a rifle platoon or artillery section.  Let alone in combat. 

Second, something Lt B refers to below, is that instead of telling a young man such as this that those aspects of primal leadership are only a PART of leadership, and varying in their importance, we tell them it is WRONG and sexist.  His instincts tell him differently.  It is the feminization of the military.  He is right in saying that women, leaders or otherwise, don't know what it means to be a man. 

What is worse, however, is that we have long and loud voices that tell us that those traits and characteristics that make us MEN, not just males, are outdated and no longer matter.  Except they do.  Even worse yet, they are trotted out only upon convenience, and used to flay men because they aren't acting like men.  (Why are not the "womens' groups" applauding that the 'women and children first" mantra was ignored on Costa Concordia?  Isn't that a true victory? Equality at last!)

Byron, I want just that attitude as this Middie has, someone looking to prove himself.  He doesn't have grit in his ears, he has fire in his belly.  Leadership, guidance, and maturity will temper that aggressiveness appropriately.  If you start with the luke warm, you start with nothing. 

AR, I have no doubt whatever about your physical prowess in the ocean.  But that is not the same as ground combat, and likely has little to do with the business of killing.  Physical strength and aggressiveness, and proficiency with one's weapons, and the raw courage to go first, those are what matter when it is time to kick in doors at the small unit level.  

There is much this Midshipman has to learn, and properly led, he will.  The thoughts he expresses are appropriate for his level of experience and perspective.  There is much more to leadership than he is seeing right now.   But let's not tell him, like the PC police are wont to do, that what he is seeing isn't there, or is wrong.  Because we should know better than that ourselves.

He has a lot to learn.  So, apparently, do many here on the porch.

MR T's Haircut said...

Concur.  In our basic childish selfs we have this figured out.. Boys gravitate to guns, Army Men and militaria, Girls gravitate to Barbi, make up and ponies..  facts are stubborn things..

His question would not be out of sorts 60-50 years ago.. the effects of social engineering

Actus Rhesus said...

Only the long guns, I'm rubbish with a pistol.  I attribute my ribbons to Navy's low standards and nothing else.

And no...you can't say hot.  I will fine you 10 diversity demerits and direct you to the latest GMT on NKO: Why every word in your vocabulary is an example of your white male privilege and how you should just stop talking now. 

The good news is it's only 500 slides.

MR T's Haircut said...

?  CDR K, with respect, he is asking a proper question and more importantly, he is searching for an answer.  Your mommy issues assumption it without merit.

Spade said...

"<span>"if a woman is better than me, I can’t be a man" ... "is this really just my problem?""</span>

Oh, now that's going to be an interesting marriage. Hopefully he just gets an emptyheaded trophy wife.

MR T's Haircut said...

We want it both ways me thinks... this young man joined following the USMC recruiting drives of "A few Good Men" "The few the Proud , the Marines"  I see what he saw, young men of chiseled features, having been turned into "men" by the Service. 

a very noble idea.

Now enter the Diversity Dogma and we now slap down this young man for following the recruiting ideals? 

We will be hard pressed to find warriors if we cannot define what we want our warriors to look like.. DADT? No DADT.  Men? No Men, Women.  Women?  Not Women, gender neutral.  WTF!?!

JIBBER JABBER!

Actus Rhesus said...

please explain to me what doing pull ups in a heated gym has to do with combat?

If the question is strength, fortitude, perseverence and the ability to push through pain to get the job done, there's a lot of ways to test that.

And did you miss the part where I said I'm NOT asking to go to BUDS or be a hand to hand groundpounder? Not the right fit for me.  Again, go back to the premise.  This isn't about weeding out the people who can't hack it, a permise with which I and probably everyone on this board agree.  It's about someone saying "I don't care how qualified they are...they're a GIRL and I can't feel like a MAN if I'm behind a GIRL"

You are responding to something, but it's not the post that was written.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Mike, leave Clutch out of this discussion.  She would not appreciate being dragged into it.

Actus Rhesus said...

Also, lol at the hypocricy.

I can't criticize his opinion because he's talking about MANLY things? 

I'll remember that next time you criticize something I say.  After all, we all have a right to our opinions and no one should ever be made to feel bad for posting their pwecious snowfwake thoughts.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Everyone calm down for a second.

This midshipman is a YOUNG MAN.  He is full of motivation, piss, vinegar, energy, aggression, hormones, and a desire to go out there and kick ass.  He is in many ways no different from the young PFCs and LCPLs that we send into combat, perhaps just better educated.  They are the epitome of brash young warriors.  They are alpha males: unadulterated throwbacks of chivalristic pride.  They are not liberals cultured in the ways of diversity and excuses.  They believe that might makes right and they want to test just how mighty they are.  The ultimate success to them is not making 4 stars, but the Combat Action Ribbon; a Purple Heart; a Silver Star; a Medal of Honor.

In order to even advance one pay grade in the military, will this young man have to compromise some of his piss and vinegar ways?  Yes.  Does some of that come naturally with age?  Again, yes.  Was I the exact same way when I was his age and turn out just fine thank you very frickin' much?  Hell yes.

Is there a secret side of me, deep down that I don't talk about at cocktail parties that might still, somewhat agree with what this young man is saying / trying to say?  No comment.

Young men like this grow up in gender integrated schools that segregate for sports.  Why?  Because the girls can't keep up with the boys.  It wouldn't be fair.  Then he gets to the military and is told everyone is the same, HOWEVER:  PT standards are different.  Uniforms are different.  And some MOS's are closed off.  And, realistically, some jobs within non-segregated MOS's are not assigned to females because they aren't strong enough.  It is hard enough for us to square our heads around here on diversity thursday about why females who get equal pay, at least equal promotions are celebrated for being phenom's for equal performance.  Are we expecting this young man to get it?

That being said, work on your writing prose, Kid.  It needs some serious work.  My tax dollars are paying for that?!  Sheesh.  More time studying, less time PTing...

LT Rusty said...

This is ... not a particularly uncommon train of thought for young men of a certain age.  I certainly had similar thoughts when I was a plebe (although I wasn't at the Boat School.)  By the time I'd graduated, however, I'd done a little bit more growing up.

Also, I'd come to the conclusion that being a SWO isn't really all about being the biggest toughest badass on the block. 

That said, I've served under and with some women that were the finest leaders and officers imagineable.  I've also served with (although fortunately not under) some that ... shouldn't have been allowed on base.  The proportions were probably about equal to the same conditions found in male officers served with and under.

Could I learn anything about being a man from them?  No.  But then, by the time I graduated college I'd also pretty much realized that there were different lessons to learn from different people.

Byron said...

URR, if this young idiot had not mentioned his issues with women, you'd be all over him like white on rice for the stupid things he said. He'd have dropped and given you a million. Since he brought up women, you just had to go political in the never ending quest to turn back the hands of time. Ain't gonna happen. And this idiot didn't say he wanted to be aggresive, he said he wanted to be a badass. You know damn well this is the kind of dumbass that will get people killed and you damn well know it. Try to separate one from the other and you'll know I'm right.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

I'm still waiting for the time when I think I'm ready to jump my sensei and kick his ass.  He's 88 and the way things are going, he'll be dead before I think I can take the old man.

Old Farter said...

But any leader, male or female, needs to be better than their subordinates. It’s why they’re called superiors.

This comment is pretty broad stroke. MIDN seems to focus on the physical side of things and I will focus there as well. As a young 2LT or ENS, it is not without reason to think that you can and should be able to physically outperform your subordinates. It encourages and and motivates the troops and probably gives them some peace of mind. However, as age, injuries, illness and the overall condition of the body breaks down from wear and tear being a bad ass, this is a hard standard to maintain, though a worthy goal. I felt this way too, when I was young and foolish and my late father-in-law often reminded me that time is a great equalizer. He was oh so right. 

Never did like the term "superior officer."  I may be senior to someone, but the whole superior thing makes me cringe.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Byron, I think you are way off base, Sir.  If you got rid of all the brash young men who thought like this kid, then you'd get rid of a lot of great kids.  He's thumping his chest.  He needs a lot of work on his writing style; however, he is the epitome of what we claim that we want in one breathe and then spend the next 4 years beating it out of him in order to fit the current civil-military mold that we have going in Corporate DoD.

If we went back to World War II, Vietnam, Korea, or shit even up to the Gulf War, this was not just what we secretly wanted, this is what we said we wanted.  A few good men?  We weren't going to the Gay Bars to find them.  OR Zumba class.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Reminds me of the scene from We Were Soldiers:

"Right there, Sir....he's a fine officer" (pointing to the officer taking care of his soldier's feet)
"And him?  [pointing to the officer thrashing his guys for leaving their battle buddy] He wants to win medals."

"He's eager.  Eager is good."

Different ways at looking at the same officer......

GBS said...

I wonder who taught him that "superior" thing?  It was drilled into my head early on (30 years ago) that higher ranking individuals were "senior", not "superior". 

Although being able to keep up with the kids is important, they'll ultimately have more "peace of mind" knowing the boss is smart enough to keep them alive.

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Marriage aside
(Cinchouse is better than I am in many ways, I have some areas where I excel, and many she's better - otherwise why get married - she will be your greatest ally and most challenging judge, it's a partnership, THE partnership for the rest of your life, so go for the strongest combination),
the kid has a serious case of dumbass jockitus.  

Yes, you need to be competent in every area you require competence from your troops. You also have to realize you need to think, understand, plan, scheme, and conspire as well as you can.

The brain is the ultimate weapon. Muscles are handy and sometimes necessary. For an officer, knowlege, understanding, empathy, determination, moral courage and just plain smarts are sine qua non.

Women don't think like men or bond like men. Learn how they do. Just as they need to learn how you do.

In this business, you don't much do what you like. You do what you must, governed by the need to honor the Almighty, defend the right and dread not.

This ain't the NFL. It's all hardball, all the time. 

Grandpa Bluewater said...

you lead a sheltered life...

OutlawMike said...

As men we have to be honest with ourselves and admit that one of the prime reasons of joining the military - if not THE prime reason - is an atavistic tendency. Put in simple terms the Call of the Fight. Sure, other idealistic factors certainly come into play, like the sincere sentiment of wanting to sacrifice for your country, or even more mundane factors like simply wanting to earn your bread in a trade you think appeals enough to you. But without the extra testosterone of the first factor, it is clear that the US Army - indeed, every army - would have a hard time to fill all the slots.

There's however no need to be ashamed for that - since on the other hand, armed violence for the defense of human rights IS an absolute necessity... and will remain so forever. Even when our species has finally managed not to kill each other off and the whole planet is in unison, the enlisted men and women who will probe the universe beyond our solar system will have to do so with the support of the descendants of today's aviators, sailors, tankers, and infantrymen, for we will certainly meet hostile lifeforms.

That young men is, alas, stuck in some retarded thinking. While he is pardoned, in my view, to 'feel' he should rather be led by a male, he should be able to put himself intellectually ABOVE that feeling.

Of course, whether the female gender can provide as many fearless leaders as the male is another matter. Females are biologically more suited for procreation and caring. Outstanding personae will come forward at any time - from Queen Boadicea over Soviet female tankers to IDF girls. But they will always be less numerous than their male counterparts. It's the sole 'consolation' that guy has.

arkhangelsk said...

Note to Midshipman: If you really want to be a "alpha-wolf", you should have Enlisted and fought for "dominance" within your platoon before considering an officership. That would be the best equivalent of what real wolves do.

Real wolves are not given a special course and then given these magical items known as commissions and officer's rank badges that give them automatic superiority beyond the alpha-wolves who hard earned their dominance.

DeltaBravo said...

Dear Plebe, I've read your statement carefully. I've read the posts of others carefully.  Now it's time for the old lady of the porch to speak.  I say this with all respect for who you are and who you want to become.  Never confuse being a male pack animal with being an actual man.  There is a huge difference.  Our prisons are loaded with one kind.  You wish to become the other.  You say you do not want to follow a woman.  Well, if your mother has been doing her job for 19 or so years, you have been doing just that.  You think because they have XX chromosomes, women past a certain age no nothing about what is involved with being a man.  I say differently.  The Marines aren't looking for MEN.  They are looking for a few GOOD men.  I suggest to you if there is anything good in you, a woman probably had much to do with instilling it, teaching it, and reinforcing it.   Leadership is more than being bigger, faster and stronger than your followers.  He who wishes to lead must first learn to follow.  Leadership that you want to respect is more than intimidating those you lead.  It's about character, integrity, the wisdom of knowing when to act and when to hold back, when to speak and when to be silent, what to say and what not to say.  That does not come attached to chromosomes.  If she has been doing her job, your mother has been teaching you this all along.  Do not do her a grave disservice now and say that what you have been following has turned you into a chihuahua.  Most of us women don't want our men neutered.  Nor do we respect blind pack animals.  We've all met the kind of people whose troops would follow them into hell with two gasoline cans and a lit match.  That kind of leader inspires loyalty and respect.  It is something that is independent of gender.  You are young.  You are confusing loyalty with hero worship.  You think in black and white terms.  That only men can teach men how to be men and the rest is girl stuff.  You maybe are too young to see that what you look for in a leader is the stuff that isn't restricted to one gender or the other.  At this stage in your life you have much knowlege but not much wisdom.  That will come if you learn to respect those above you regardless of gender.  What divides the US Military in history from all the conquering hordes of history is that the US serviceman isn't just an alpha male killing machine.  Any group of savages can do that.  And they have.  The US serviceman also knows when to temper danger with mercy, force with compassion, deadly intent with self control.  Those he conquers learn to respect him because he shows kindness to their children while protecting them at the same time.  I assure you, these attributes are also very maternal attributes.  There is something to be said for the distaff point of view now and then.   And someday, Plebe, chances are you will choose a wife.  And if you are smart, you will choose a good one.  And you will realize that she has much to teach you as well about what being a man really means.  If you are smart, you will learn that following her will make you a better man.  Like many of the men here on the porch, you will realize that you would follow her into hell with two gasoline cans and a lit match, only because you have learned to trust her and her instincts more than your own.  It won't make you a lesser man.  It will make you a more complete man.  But first you must continue on your quest to discover what it really means to be a good man.  Good luck, God bless you, [...]

DeltaBravo said...

pardon my egregious grammar mistake.  "Know" should be there not "no nothing".  Proofing on js-kit is for the birds.

Cdr Ashore said...

This mentality is simply a perversion of what you (sal) have been preaching against for quite a while now. "I can't follow a leader that doesn't look like me." It is simple bigotry just done from the opposite end of the spectrum.

Sorry to see you publish this musing - your stature takes a ding in my book. A waste of time and an unnecessary and unwanted public platform for the court jester's opinion.

Actus Rhesus said...

STANDING OVATION

DeltaBravo said...

OM, I'm also biologically and emotionally suited to rip to shreds anyone who would hurt one of my children.   And those of us who have given birth multiple times, in their heart of hearts, wonder if any man would go through 9.5 months of pregnancy, labor and delivery more than once in a lifetime.  Our plebe has things to learn about life and toughness and character.  Things that can't be taught in a classroom.  His success in life will depend on how quick his learning curve is. 

DeltaBravo said...

No... you can't deal with an issue if you hide it away.  His caveat was that this is what leaders will deal with.  He gave the plebe a platform.  Now it's time to discuss.  Good on Sal!

TheMightyQ said...

I think that inspiration is what this MIDN's post is all about. He seems to take inspiration from the physical ideal, and why should we attack that?  Is there more to leadership?  Of course. However,  I think that to deny that the physical element has a part in leadership is ludicrous.  He wants to be inspired, and to inspire others in return.  I think if we are honest with ourselves, we can admit that aggressive young men are not going to be inspired by women.  That does not make them wrong, or bad, it is simply a fact. That does not mean that there arent capable female officers, it means that regardless of their capability, they are not going to inspire him to run over obstacles, and fire guns, and sweat, and bleed, etc.  I think he will end up doing just those things regardless, if ordered to by a female senior, however the wellspring of agression will not flow the same.

I can relate it to the idea that it is much easier to take onboard a task and motivate one's juniors if one understands the "why" of said task.  It does not mean that we ask "Why?" when ordered to accomplish a mission, it just means that it is easier to motivate others as if the idea for the task is one's own if we understand the reasons behind it.  It is apparently easier for this young man to be inspired to maximum effort when he is lead by a physical specimen, and he wants to be one to inspire others of his same ilk.  Does he have much to learn about the other aspects of leadership? Of course.  However, if we attempt neuter aggressive young men like this, rather than take that fire and direct it to something productive, than we will find ourselves another version of Western Europe: immasculated and bereft of creative energy required to accomplish anything productive.

MR T's Haircut said...

well said. again.

Aubrey said...

I have no problem with Sal posting this, nor does it diminish him in any way of which I can conceive. Sal is 100% right, these sentiments exist in the fleet, in the other services, and (let's be honest) in much of our society. Are they the norm, or even the majority? No, in my opinion, experience and estimation they represent a small percentage...

That being said, I do think Cdr Ashore is right in noting that the MDN's post is pure bigotry. Honest he may be, a fine performer and a strong individual he may be, but he is still a bigot. His post is the functional equivalent of saying he would not follow Lt B due to that esteemed gentlemen's genetic background.

To the midshipman I will suggest he be careful with assuming physical limitations - I played several years of pro hockey, I have studied martial arts since I was 11, I have been in more bar fights than I can count, and I got my a$$ handed to me by a five foot tall, 100 pound chick who, I swear to all that is holy, was made of pure steel and was the scariest fighter I have ever encountered.

Aubrey said...

I'm with AR....you nailed it DB

Aubrey said...

I sincerely doubt Omar Bradley could have outrun his wife, let alone an active duty corporal, and he turned out OK....

Aubrey said...

Trouble is, the good MDN actually is the very definition of the Diversity Zampolits (although he may not realize it) in that he states he will only follow someone who looks like him.

Samie said...

What is wrong with this young man? How could anyone have such thoughts and feelings in today's society and military?  I mean, how did this one slip through the cracks? Obviously, the "village" that raised this young man failed to properly emasculate him to the appropriate levels. Specifically, who's to blame? Certianly his family structure and school system he grew up in.   What shame. To think that a young man in today's military would actually want to be influenced by a strong male.  How disturbing is that?

Aubrey said...

Self-confidence is king, no doubt. Agonizing and questioning himself in bad situations will get people killed. But the young man needs to learn wisdom along with confidence - he needs to lead with his head and his heart, not just with his brawn.

That being said the young man can have equally young sailors or Marines put under his command at any time now - do THEY have the time for him to learn to temper his silliness with wisdom?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Byron,

Don't presume to know my thoughts.  You haven't seen the football since kickoff on this issue, and please refrain from lecturing me on the raw material I want in junior leaders. 

His enthusiasm will be tempered with maturity, leadership, and guidance.  His perspective in front of 40 Marines will be quite a bit more refined than he expresses here.  But what he expresses here has VALUE.   He is aggressive and wants to prove himself.  He will learn how as he grows as a leader.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

AR,

Never did I say you couldn't criticize.  You are a lawyer, and you know damned well what I said.  The word I think you should be searching for is "perspective".  If you don't think displays of physical prowess, even dominance, enhance the ability of young leaders at the squad and platoon level, I don't know what to tell you.  After three 20-hour days carrying 90 pounds of gear, ammo, water, and weapons, and taking into account little sleep or food, and the reasonable promptings of fear, to be able to scale the wall when it is time to go has VALUE.  Don't presume to think that, because you wear a uniform, you understand leadership the same way a Sergeant squad leader in 2/6 understands it.  You don't. 

This middie will learn, and he will come across females who will be great examples for him.  And he will also learn that the physical courage and physical example portion of leadership, while vitally important in some places, will not be so much in others. 

But what he hits on, and his instinctive feelings, should not be dismissed.  They should be understood, as they are common to the young, callow, enthusiastic alpha males that should make up our junior leaders in combat arms.

Aubrey said...

Take the chromosomes out of this argument and substitute reserves and active duty. In WWII, especially the first couple of years, any officer with USNR after their name was seriously looked down upon. Were there good reasons? Sure. Many of the "regular Navy" assumed a USNR captain could not effectively fight or lead because they did not fit the "ideal" of the time. They were out-of-shape. They were inexperienced. They were not "alpha males". What they WERE was Samuel B Roberts, Gambier Bay, every single Flower class...

Leadership and bravery are internal and, for the most part, inherent. They are neither physical nor predictable.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

<span>AR,  
 
"</span><span>Tell the Mid to come talk to me when he's actually been in a combat zone."</span>

<span>That statement is nonsense.  The very same could be said to YOU if you were talking to a Lance Corporal or 2nd LT with two CARs, a Purple Heart, and a list of squad mates who were killed and wounded.   
 
That Middie should be able to come talk to you ANY TIME.  About anything.  Whether you agree with his expressed opinions or not.  That is also a part of leadership.  If you think he needs tempering, you need to understand how he thinks first, and then be able to communicate with him meaningfully.   
 
What you express above would not be acceptable to me.  If I'd heard you say it to a future leader such as this in my command, I would fire you.  Instantly.</span>

cdrsalamander said...

Ashore,
<span>CDR A.,  
Wow .... what an incredible display of ignorance. I am a male - yet I have been an upfront supporter of female service. I am heterosexual - yet I have been an upfront supporter of homosexuals openly serving. I am mostly of European extraction - yet have been an upfront supporter of treating everyone the same regardless of race, creed, color, or national origin --- yet you claim what you claim?  Please, quote some chapter and verse. Tell me more.  
 
As for publishing the thoughts of the guest poster MIDN - I am a firm believer that alternative opinions should be brought out in the open for discussion and if needed countering. Just because they make some people uncomfortable is no reason in a free society to keep opinions from view. You are, not surprisingly, missing the point of this post altogether.  
 
As for criticism of your humble blogg'r - I welcome it; as long as it is based on fact.  Your criticism isn't based on any fact - it is something on the intellectual level of apes flinging poo at shadows - a signal of intellectual laziness and inability to effectively argue a position.  
 
I would suggest that you may want to look at yourself.  It seems to me that you have a very closed mind and a doctrinaire view of opinions that are not fully in line with your own.  Anything that does not echo your diktat - you smear, slime, distort and slander. Counter with effective argument? No ... fling poo? Yes.</span>

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Full stop on being offended and re read what URR just wrote.  Young men are not young women.  They are hard wired differently.  And young men are not the same thing as older, seasoned, more mature men.  That is why we have fathers and male role models:  sometimes the younger men require calibration, sometimes they need experience, and sometimes they need encouragement.

If you don't understand what I am writing about, re-read URR's last comment to Byron.

LT Rusty said...

Yet again, DB nails it.

There are times when leadership by executive fiat is the only way that will work, and there are times when leadership by executive fiat will not only not work, but will turn out disastrously.  Whenever you're talking about opinions, feelings, ideas, etc., you have to talk about things and get them out in the open.  Someone once said "a man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still." 

When you simply order someone to suppress their honestly held beliefs, the results will rarely be to your liking.  You'll perhaps make them STFU about it, but you'll also wind up with buried resentment and passive-aggressive tendencies.

When you can get people to talk openly about the way they think and feel about things, you stand a far better chance of actually changing an opinion, if you can bring solid info to the table, and the person is both intelligent and intellectually honest. 

Phib has a voice that a lot of people listen to.  We all know that what gets talked about here gets noticed in a lot of other places.  By giving MIDN Whoever the bully pulpit for a moment, and then discussing the issue honestly and in a serious and mature fashion, we have a better chance of resolving the problem than we might otherwise.

This is one of those cases where group mentoring by the front porch is probably better than just giving the young fellow the hammer to put him in line.

cdrsalamander said...

AOD,
"<span>And young men are not the same thing as older, seasoned, more mature men.  That is why we have fathers and male role models:  sometimes the younger men require calibration, sometimes they need experience, and sometimes they need encouragement.  </span>"

Congrats - you get a "Gold Star Happy Face" award for getting the reason for this post.  BZ - and go b1tch slap CDR Ashore for me.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Aubrey,

Especially in ground combat MOS, physical courage is a part of courage.  It applies.  Always has.

Byron said...

No offense, Cdr Ashore, but a little reading first before engaging the keyboard will go a long way towards not looking stupid.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

DB,

Love you dearly.  But don'tcha think your years of learning and perspective are just a bit much for a 20-year old Midshipman to absorb as perspective? 

All those things may be true.  But he isn't there yet.  And much of what he talks about vis a vis women and physical dominance reflect his perspective.   And there is more than a grain of truth in what he says, especially from where he says it.   His is a world where the mantra that "men and women are the SAME" runs rampant.  And he is trying to square that against what he instinctively knows to be true. 

Once out of "diversity central" and with some seasoning and leadership mentoring (the REAL kind), he will get it. 

But to have him be called "bigoted" and "retarded" and "dumbass jock", "detestable", with "mother issues", among others, is disappointing.  He put his hand up in a time of war to serve his country.  More, he aspires to lead others in doing so.   And he has the balls to express an unpopular viewpoint for discussion. 

Shame on the name callers.  I take this guy.  He learns, he grows, he leads.  He realizes where his instinctive views will be tempered with experience and perspective.   To those who don't want to give him that chance, shame on you.

DeltaBravo said...

And URR, you know I love you back.  And you also know that you'd have to look very hard to find in my post any name calling.   Other than pointing out our Plebe lacks wisdom.  But you do point out something very important.... he lacks perspective.  He can't see very far down the road.  So many of our young men can't.  And so they can't know that what they think they are following to make them "men" could lead them down the wrong road and they may arrive at a very different destination than they initially thought they were heading for.  Pack animals run in the moment in the time and place.  They don't have the eagle's eye view of the horizon.  This discussion is healthy because they need to have pointed out to them the race is not always won by the biggest, the fastest and the strongest.  But by the person who has the most information, who knows the shortcuts, who has the long view.  And who can convince those who follow to stay with them even when the way doesn't seem clear.  I know what I wrote can't be digested by those younguns who haven't been experienced.  But like a good mother, I'll take the lad by the scruff of the neck, shake him, school him, and then let him loose to find out on his own that wommens aren't always as dumb as they might look.  They have their own unique talents. And sometimes you disregard their leadership at your own peril.

Kristen said...

CDR, once again I applaud you for your absolute fearlessness in posting topics for discussion.  This will probably draw 200 heated responses and lots of ideas that aren't approved of in today's military will be aired.  You do a terrific job of offering a really open forum and encouraging all points of view, and I appreciate that very much. 

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Hmmmmm......I've studied martial arts since I was 10, not 11, and I have never been in a barfight.  Maybe that is because I actually paid attention to what was taught.  Or, maybe that one extra year makes all the difference.

Small minds always equate chivalry with chauvanism.  And smaller minds always assume that the raw musings of an 18 year old will never evolve, mature and change over 4 years of instruction / mentorship and a career's worth of experience.

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Audie Murphy was a little bitty guy. Not all that strong, although in good shape. No olympic athlete. I'm pretty sure most of the guys he killed could do more pull ups.

'Taint the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.

sid said...

Time for a tap on the glass of the "Google Barometer"...

Thats the navy this young gent -who has a world of perspective ahead- gets to look at each day.

In contrast...

Just sayin'

Kristen said...

Forgot to add...I think you gave the young man some excellent advice on searching out a career path that will give him what he wants.

Retired Jag said...

Exactly!!!  This is a young guy speaking his heart.  You may not agree with everything that he says, and I doubt that in 10-15 years he will agree with everything that he says, but the wrong reaction is to tell him he is wrong, he is out of step with reality and that he should shut up.  That would be the typical Diversity Nazi reaction.  He needs to be heard and to have discussion of his views, but discussion in terms of his view of the world, not in the sincerity of his beliefs or his authority to have his own views--and views that may not match the grand strategies currently in vogue.  We need to bring guys like this further into the fold--not alienate them.  He has a bright future, he just needs a bit more maturity and some experience to round out his views.

DeltaBravo said...

I put this link in a post last week.  I'll bump it up here for those who didn't see it but might want a commentary on leadership from some very wise men.  http://mcfc.dodlive.mil/  Some pointed things to be said about discussion, respect, and leaders learning from subordinates. 

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Audie Murphy was there to kill because he had the physical strength and endurance to hump the gear to get to, and stay in, the fight. 

We aren't talking just size, GBW.  Never were.  You know that.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

No, my dear, you did not do any name calling.  Others did, however.

Kristen said...

Aubrey, I usually agree with you but not this time.  It's not fair to say that he will only follow leaders who look like him.  Whatever his race is, I bet he would happily follow strong men of other races.  Men and women are different from eachother in ways that men of different races are not.  He expresses himself very naively, but he is yearning to be a sheepdog and serve with other sheepdogs.  That's not comtemptible.

ewok40k said...

my take on gender in combat:
Hudson: Hey Vasquez, have you ever been mistaken for a man?
Vasquez: No. Have you?
I have met women swinging exact replicas of medieval swords better than most men including me can. In WW2 desperately pressed for manpower (pun non intended...) Soviets have found women able to become both combat pilot aces and extraordinary snipers.
Of course there are areas - infantry assault troops like marines are prime example - where strength counts more than elsewhere. Those will see few if any women, but those that do get in will be like Vasquez - being manlier than most men in the world.

Oh and ability to lead is one thing some women have in abnundance, from Boadicea thru Joan of Arc to Lady Thatcher. Better than you have been following women, young padawan...

UltimaRatioRegis said...

And nobody is disregarding the unique talents of women.  Certainly not someone who reads Kipling as I do. 

I will say, however, that the leadership in a ground combat unit is not a mother's love.  You have a mission to accomplish, and you must be willing to lead in that environment of death, fear, pain, and anger.  You will have to order these men possibly to their deaths because something needs to be done.   Young men die even when it is done right.  You have to be able to put aside the genuine affection for your Marines and give the order that, say a street crossing needs to be secured, or a building entered.  Knowing full well that if an enemy who knows what he is doing awaits them, your Marines stand a good chance of being killed.  And you have to be willing, bars or stripes, to be one of the first into that building from time to time.

DeltaBravo said...

I save all MY name calling for adults who should know better.  :-D

UltimaRatioRegis said...

A different form of this, DB.  One discussed eloquently by that sagest of poets

Interestingly, I have heard oh-so many women say they "could never hurt anyone!"

What about if they threatened to kill your children?  "I'd KILL THEM!!!!"

Uh-huh.  You betchee.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

"...women arent' always as dumb as they might look."

I don't recall the Midshipman once ever calling intelligence into question.  I think that in this post, once everyone started to hear their own respective buzz words, the hackles went up and folks just jumped to conclusions.  I think that if everyone took a break from commenting, had a glass of pinot noir and a nice new york strip steak, and came back to it they might feel differently.

Has anyone ever heard the title "JORG" before?  It stands for Junior Officer Requiring Guidance.  The most junior ensign on any ship is the JORG.  They don't know a damn thing.  Half the time they don't even know what they don't know.  They go off their gut instincts and their minimalist level of knowledge, which often times leads them astray.  They attempt to square their gut with their knowledge and come up short time after time.  They look at an imperfect fleet that is half full of bullshit and don't understand.

But if you give them guidance without calling them names / chastising them / ridiculing them for not understanding a system that is inherently hypocritical and biased, then you will meet their needs, teach them how to become a warrior in full and utilize all the assets they have at their disposal, both senior and subordinate, male and female while intelligently acknowledging the inherent capabilities and limitations.

At one point or another, every new officer that shows up is a JORG. We all required guidance.  And if you think that is not the case, then you were probably a huge know-it-all dickhead or you never served.  

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

what an asshat comment.  "You are an idiot, so you should go hang out with the idiot enlisted."  That is basically what you are saying.  No room for dissenting opinion here in the wardroom!  No Sir!  Steer into shoal water?  Sounds good, Captain!  You will never have me dissent!

Aubrey said...

AOD - you and I might hold a differ opinion, but I see no need to insult me. "Smaller mind" indeed. Come meet me, understand my life, understand who I am, and then tell me I have a small mind - I will accept it from someone who has done those things. From someone on the Internet who just wants to insult me because I do not agree 100% with him? Not so much.

Spade said...

Of course, there's always the chance the DOD will decide this guy is best suited to do, say, acquisitions or policy.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

<blushing>

I'd like to thank the Academy of Front Porch Studies for this huge momentous occaision in my life...wow...I am totally under prepared...I never thought this would happen...I'd like to thank God, my mother, my fiancee, my f-------------[music starts playing and the hook pulls me off stage]</blushing>

DeltaBravo said...

Exactly.   It should be required reading and the subject of at least one week of class time at any service academy. 

Bob Coleman said...

Women in combat, in the air or elsewehere is a peacetime luxury.  And sorry Phibian, they have already infiltrated the ranks of NSW, they are in EOD and in my opinon do not meet the physical requirments.  Watching them in the gym in Kandahar you could see they never met the PT requirements in the first place.  Our casulaties in the past 10 years are miniscule compared to anything in "This Kind of War".   Get ready, the re-fight in the futre will be more difficult then even after early 1942, or the late months of 1950.

Aubrey said...

URR, I am absolutely not arguing that. My only point was that appearances can be deceiving, and assumptions can be dangerously so...

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Omar Bradley was captain of two varsity sports at West Point.  My guess is that, as a junior leader, he was more than able to display physical endurance during the many field problems, route marches, and training evolutions he was involved in. 

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

I hate when people abuse history to make their points.  It is like paid political pollsters and wall street types.  You can fudge numbers until they tell you something that you like.

read moneyball.

cdrsalamander said...

Bob,
But they are not leading in combat at the tip.

Aubrey said...

By the way - I'm following this advice. I stand by the things I've written, but I also freely admit that I can jump with both feet long before I bother to think and contemplate...

So, a glass of good single malt, a good dinner, and I'll see what my brain and gut tell me....

UltimaRatioRegis said...

I also think your assumptions about the USNR fits in the "assumptions" category.  They were not out of shape, or even "inexperienced", and a great many were more "alpha" than their coddled Academy colleagues. 

The disdain came not from the sailors, but from the ring knockers.  The sailor followed those who led well.  Innovative, courageous, professionals who proved themselves in the furnace of combat. 

By the by, a leader that goes by "appearances" and "impressions" when developing junior leaders is no leader at all.  It is the senior's job to KNOW, not assume, or go on "impressions".

Boat School Grad said...

I am USNA '83.  My Plebe Summer in '79 was the first Plebe Summer with women firsties ('80) in the Detail.  I remember being braced up getting reamed by a sub 5-foot, double 0 female firstie.  They had an agenda being the "first" cadre of female firsties at USNA.   I'm a big guy and I was a 19, almost 20 year old Plebe.  I certainly remember MY private thought from that Come Around moment.  YGTBFKM!

Sean said...

So we just ignore examples from history??

...I vaguely seem to remember some sort of admonishment about those who don't remember their history...

usnagirl12 said...

It's interesting that you say you joined the military to learn how to be a man.  Not for the sole object of serving your country, but to learn how to be masculine and tough and "badass".  (Marines are much more than all of that...and if they aren't, then they aren't very good marines.) But then you also say that you want a <span>man</span> to follow because "any leader...needs to be better than their subordinates".  But I would argue that the fact that the woman joined purely to serve her country makes her better than you because she isn't looking to "prove" herself. She wants to protect her loved ones and keep bad people from hurting good people. If she can do that compitantly and professionally, then there shouldn't be any problem with her leading other men in the service. You say you need a man to look up to, to learn from, but there are plenty of those around you.  Why should the everyone in your chain of command be exactly the same in terms of masculinity, toughness, etc?  You don't have to look far to find a MAN that you want to be like and model yourself after.  But you should also look to a woman to teach you how to be a man as well. She can teach you a lot of things that a man should be.  She can teach you how to be compassionate, reasonable, and fair which are all traits that a REAL man possess. If you are only looking to those feirce, brutal and often times vulgar men as an example then you will hardly become the full package of what a man should be.  You can learn a lot from a woman about how to be a man....something to think about.

usnagirl12 said...

and what private thought is that? Please translate...

Boat School Grad said...

The "Tip" of the sword, as you put it, is only a few nano meters wide these days.

James said...

This guy is what 18-19? He sounds like it. Some men just Have to have a very manly person at that age. How often do you hear about that limp wristed football coach who has a poster that says "no matter what i always lover you! Double Rainbows and sunshine!~ coach FLuffy." winning a conference or becoming a NFL coach?

That is the POINT of maturity and experience. It teaches you whats right and the most important factor of any leader or man WISDOM.

Think about it this way this man is now in a Military that actively discriminates against him and tells him to shutup or be punished as a bigot. Do you really think its suprising he has reacted negatively?

Ground forces are basicly large conglomerations of packs. Now Most of the men in these packs are made up of dogs. Loyal to a fault and strong able to do a hundred different jobs. But in every society there are other groups.

One of these is made up of people who in many ways resemble the enemy the sheepdogs fight, wolves. They like to fight, they are agressive, vicous in a way the sheep dogs have forgotten and they respect strength more. In a word they are deadly if used properly and trained right. Where most wolves want to kill the sheep these are more loyal.

Treat them right help them along they are a damned mean and hard to stop force no other force is better than they at taking hardened locations or storming beaches.

I bet if you went back and looked at the men first called "Devil Dogs" you'd find many like him but with the wisdom and maturity he right now lacks.

Or these men.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legio_V_Alaudae

Byron said...

Jesus, you knew my ex-wife before I married her? 8-)

GBS said...

Aubrey...WTF are you talking about?  I sincerely doubt you know much about Omar Bradley.  Anyone who spent four years at West Point in the early part of the 20th century was plenty tough.  URR somewhat understates Bradley's reputation as an athlete.

Grandpa Bluewater said...

URR: read a bit closer, "in good shape" was meant to cover your quite valid point.

Most Bolsoi ballerinas are wee small ladies. I will not attempt their physical accomplishments, nor, I think, should you.

Although it would be fun to watch. Do they make tu-tu's in mens XXXL? =-O

Byron said...

Not sure he said that, AOD. I sorta get his viewpoint, if you assume that MIDN X is wanting the Alpha Wolf competition is a priority for him.

Byron said...

Ask a cop which kind of bar fight he wants to break up : two guys or two gals going at it..

When women get really pissed and start fighting, it's all aout warfare and everything is legal. You'd be better off sticking your arm into a threshing machine :)

campbell said...

@  Byron:   Well said, Sir!

Boat School Grad said...

<span>USNA is doomed.  I present to you usnagirl12, a FIRSTIE I presume, and she gives up after three minutes of pondering what YGTBFKM translates as.  Bam! She goes right to asking me what I mean.  No thought.  No inquiries.  No research.  Sweetie, you need to re-read A Message to Garcia.  I have the original, 1979 issued, A Message to Garcia pamphlet sitting right here on my desk as I type.</span>

Aubrey said...

He was captain of baseball and, if I remember right, tennis...

And the post was sarcasm and hyperbole - sorry if that did not come through.

And yes, I know quite a bit about Bradley

LT B said...

Funny thing is...

Right now, I am surrounded by a bunch of former SAS, SF, Recon guys (mostly).  These guys are in their 40's.  Steady operators and will tear you up if you get in their way.  These guys work as a team, and to be honest, it does not sound all that different than any locker room crap I have heard for years.  When it is just men, there is a way of speech.  Granted, it is tough to understand them sometimes when they are going at it.  Thick British accents and all, but still hilarious, and no different than me and my guys when we are working and living together.  There is a definite way men act and speak when they are away from women.  The way men talk to each other is not kind, but also not taken seriously or w/ sensitivity.  More often than not, we can not do that around women or worse, sometimes we can, and other times we can not.  And that is sad.  We have to change who we are for what, 18% of the fielded population?  I do not fullly agree w/ him, but I see his concern.  He probably would be less contrary if he didn't have the meme of 'you have a penis, and are thus evil' consistently shoved down his figurative throat.  If the standard was consistent, there would be less vitriole.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Yes, USNAGIRL12, something to think about. 

He will get there.  But let me caution you that, in the "last fifty yards", fierce, brutal, and vulgar describe very well what combat is like. 

The key to growing as a leader in combat arms is to learn all the OTHER things you must know/do/be, but still be able to tap into that very primal set of emotions when the time comes.  I look at General Robert H. Barrow as the epitome of that.  He wqas my first Commandant, by the way.  An intelligent, well-spoken gentleman, to be sure, professional and circumspect.  Then you hear him talk about how he used to move at night among the enemy in China during WWII, cutting the throats of Japanese as they slept.  And read of his leadership of 9th Marines during Dewey Canyon. 

The urbane, erudite gentleman with the grey temples was not always so.  He had a portion of the beast always within him.  If he hadn't, he would not have been the leader he was.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Well, yes and no.  There is a difference between being in contact with the enemy and defending oneself and having your primary mission being to seek out, locate, and close with that enemy.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

"<span> Do they make tu-tu's in mens XXXL?"</span>

Good God, I hope not.

usnagirl12 said...

<span>Actually Sir, I understand what YGTBFKM means and YOU have got to be fucking kidding me.  I was asking you to elaborate on your thought. Im sure it was difficult for you being one of the first classes with women in them but since then times have changed and we have been around for many years and are not going anywhere.  And USNA is not doomed. I agree that it has gotten soft over the years but it is not because women are a part of it. it is because the students and administration have let it get that way. That is a seperate issue but an important one none-the-less.
</span>

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Is hyperbole a bole that goes really, really fast?

(Yeah, I know...  f*ckin' Marines, grumble, snort....)

usnagirl12 said...

I agree that combat is feirce, brutal, and vulgar but if those are the only characteristics possess, we will have bigger problems on our hands such as the murder of innocent civilians and other war crimes.  This is where the other traits (such as compassion and rationality) come in.  I agree that a man must be all these things. I just disagree with the origional thought that woman should not be the superior officers because they, as a rule, are not brutal etc. There are many people in that MIDN's chain of command that he can look up to.

Actus Rhesus said...

Calling a Midshipman sweetie in order to discredit her position and gain leverage in an internet debate.  Stay classy.

Byron said...

USNA12, please be aware you have entered a Free Fire Zone 8-)  Seriously, while maintaining decorum and civility, take no prisoners and eat the wounded...it's the only way you'll win in here!

Boat School Grad said...

<span>You said..."Please translate".  Are you really going to add "morally challenged to "intellectually challenged" in a public forum?  Nice try.<span>  </span>Better get that squared away before you hit the Fleet darlin’.</span>

Aubrey said...

if anyone agreed with me 100% I'd be scared of them - I don't even agree with myself that much! :-D

Its the old Grouch Marx line, "I wouldn't want to belong to any club that would admit someone like me."
(I'm going off of memory for that quote, so I may have butchered it)

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Aubrey,

They temper his silliness in places like The Basic School, and IOC.  As do his seniors in a rifle company.

cdrsalamander said...

AR,
Yea ... that's picking a fight. I almost had to back my chair up a bit ... just in case ...

TheMightyQ said...

I believe the young man is referring to a trial of manhood.  This concept was par for the course for most of human history across many different cultures.  A young male was not accepted as a "man" without going through such a test in many such cultures. Joining the military has become a modern equivalent of this for young men who have been denied it through other means.  Much of the modern, Western, post-honor society has denied these young men a chance to test their mettle against a challege to prove their manhood.  Just because this concept has been forgotten, doesn't make it wrong. It doesn't mean that he has "mommy issues" or that he is "phenomenally insecure," as had been mentioned earlier in this discussion thread. A woman who "joined purely to serve her counrty" is not better than he, she is a woman who joined purely to serve her country.  Just because he wants to use the military as his trial does not make him worse than her.  It merely makes him a young man who wants to revel in his newfound manliness.  I know this concept is abhorred by many in today's society, but it exists regardless.

Actus Rhesus said...

Strawmen.  A field of strawmen.  Respond the the arguments actually made, not the ones you want to respond to.

this post was not about lowered standards and people unable to carry their own armor, perform to the specifications of the job etc.

Quote: "But if a woman is better than me, I can’t be a man"

Bollocks.  If the woman is in fact better than you, then suck it up and get out of her way.  Isn't that the point we make in every DT thread? that the most qualified should prevail?  This guy is saying that even if a woman is better, he won't follow.

That the people defending him are the same ones who consistently complain about people being in positions when the other more qualified candidates are left behind is just making my head hurt.

usnagirl12 said...

It is men like you in the fleet that give women a bad name and make us have to "prove ourselves" and make us seem like we have "an agenda".  If you weren't so close-minded, maybe you would see just how valuable women in the military truely are. I am not arguing whether or not they should be allowed fight on the front lines. But I AM arguing against the claim that they shouldn't be in the military at all.

usnagirl12 said...

Maybe I should rephrase that the women is "better" than the boy who joined to become a man.  I meant to say that he is no better than her and while he has a personal agenda as well as a concern for her country, she is looking only to protect her loved ones.  Of course this differs on an individual basis and is not true for all men and women in the military

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Indeed, but it all comes with some maturity and experience.  And patience. 

Someone very senior could sit him down right now and lecture him on all the things you mention.  While he is smart enough to cognitively know the meanings of the words, he will not yet understand.

Lesson being (for MANY here): don't shoot him in the ass for expressing a very common sentiment.  And don't dismiss that sentiment out of hand.   He is also identifying the very basic flaw in the Diversity argument that men and women are essentially the same. 

They aren't.  Doesn't mean they aren't equal.  It means they aren't the SAME.

usnagirl12 said...

@cdrsalamander, I don't know if your comment was meant to be sarcastic or not but I will agree with AR that Boat school Grad's comment was petty and childish.  He sounded more like a person with little insight in the matter rather than a Naval Academy Graduate and and officer in the United States Navy.

Actus Rhesus said...

 "He put his hand up in a time of war to serve his country."

So did the women he claims he can't follow.  The difference is that many of them have actually supported the war, while our mid is still a schoolboy.

Actus Rhesus said...

I didn't think that was his point at all.  I think he was saying it's a hell of a lot more difficult, and takes a hell of a lot more alpha wolf to get a commission as a mustang than it does to go to college and get a commission with your diploma.

At least that's how I read it.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

AR, sorry but if you think these arguments are "strawmen" then you don't really understand what the Midshipman said. 

He hasn't made the connection that not all leadership consists of finishing first on the obstacle course, or being king of the boxing ring.  But he will get there. 

Which is not to say that, in ground combat MOS in particular, those things don't matter.  Nor should be discounted completely.  He is asking a form of the question "Why should I follow you when I can kick your ass?"

For which there are myriad answers he hasn't discovered.   And it isn't going to be a male-female thing, either.  One of the answers will be "Because war is a life or death business, and that guy knows his business."  See:  Mattis, James, all five foot eight of him, even if he wears corfams and white socks on liberty.

Actus Rhesus said...

Straw men, URR.  Again, straw men.  I would never be saying to those warriors that they don't belong in the military, as the good Mid has said about me.  So you are comparing apples to aardvarks.

And, while we're on teh subject,  if heard you say in public half the crap you say on here, I'd fire you.  Instantly.

Actus Rhesus said...

USNAGirl,
Welcome to the front porch, and keep up the classy riposte!

LazyChop said...

"But any leader, male or female, needs to be better than their subordinates. It’s why they’re called superiors."

I disagree on principle with this statement. A leader must be able to know the strengths and weaknesses of his Sailors, who is most capable of various tasks, and assign them duties according to such. Disregarding cross-training for a minute, i would argue that doing anything else is poor leadership that can compromise your essential tasks for an objective. What's more critical than a balanced watch/station bill that can execute mission tasking savagely and effectively? Does the leader have to be the best at all those various tasks? I don't think anyone would expect your average TAO to know a console better than the Sailor that mans it every day and repairs it almost as often, but they should how to employ it in war. I don't think anyone would expect an aviator to know a/c repair on a deeper level than the aviation-rates, but they should know how to employ it in war. So on, and so forth. Perhaps this MIDN was only referring to superiority in the physical realm, and not warfighting proficiency.

I always prefer to use "Senior" vice "superior." One is based on rank; the other on performance. You might be "Senior' but not "superior," and vice-versa.

One other note: Despite various disagreements, I think all leaders with common sense know there are untidy areas of war wherein men with this MIDN's perspective are extraordinarily effective, even if they won't be winning Diversity awards any time soon.

Actus Rhesus said...

 "But if a woman is better than me, I can’t be a man"


Pretty much sums it all up.  I'm not sure what post you're reading, but it ain't the one on this page.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

The good Mid is a Mid.  You are a long way from having been one.  As a leader, your duty is to develop junior leaders, and not just the ones you like.

It was your argument, counselor, that he could come back to you when he has proved himself.  I pointed out that a Lance Corporal or Second Lieutenant with a couple of combat tours under their belts could view you precisely the same way.  Hardly a strawman.  And if it is, it is yours. 

As for you firing me?  Marines follow me in combat.   Their opinions are what matters.

Old Navy said...

You hit it on the head Bob, and URR drove it home.  It's not just an issue of females in the Navy, but that may be part of the cause -- the Navy has gone soft. It is "administered" (not lead) by people like Adm Harvey. We push aside the warfighters, and promote those that are kind, gentle, thoughtful and never make a mistake because they are so careful about covering their backside.  We attack the enemy from drones flown from air conditioned offices located half the world away.  Cdr Sal is right, USMC infantry and Special Warfare are the last communities where we have preserved the warriors ethos. Someone belowed referred to it as a primal urge.  Except for Naval Aviators, the Navy really has not fought a war since 1945, and has turned into a bureacracy.  I think I read it here some time ago ...when the sheepdogs start acting like sheep, the wolves will win. I am afraid that is where we have gotten.

Actus Rhesus said...

"Don't presume to know my thoughts"

And don't presume to know mine.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

No, it doesn't "pretty much sum it up". 

He is probably 18 or 19, and thinks that way because he hasn't the maturity to know why he does.  I expect that you might. 

It also doesn't mean he hasn't hit on some truths, even if he has done so obliquely.

Cdr Ashore said...

Disregarding the name calling and grabbing good handful of poo, I ask which of the following essays would you also have posted that, to me, seem very similar to that of this plebe's ...

How can I follow a man without a uterus? What can he teach me about being a woman.

How can I follow a black man? What does he know of being a man in a white majority culture?

How can I follow a Jew? What do they know of being German?

How can I follow a non-native Wisonsonian? What could he know of being a man in a winter climate?

As for looking at myself ... I looked in the mirror and longed to admire myself as narcissitically as the host.

Old Navy said...

You hit it on the head Bob, and URR drove it home.  It's not just an issue of females in the Navy, but that may be part of the cause -- the Navy has gone soft. It is "administered" (not lead) by people like Adm Harvey. We push aside the warfighters, and promote those that are kind, gentle, thoughtful and never make a mistake because they are so careful about covering their backside.  We attack the enemy from drones flown from air conditioned offices located half the world away.  Cdr Sal is right, USMC infantry and Special Warfare are the last communities where we have preserved the warriors ethos. Someone belowed referred to it as a primal urge.  Except for Naval Aviators, the Navy really has not fought a war since 1945, and has turned into a bureacracy.  I think I read it here some time ago ...when the sheepdogs start acting like sheep, the wolves will win. I am afraid that is where we have gotten.

LT Rusty said...

Actually, just one point for you USNA12 ... guys like him don't give women a bad reputation, they just make it more difficult to overcome preconceptions and stereotypes. 

Actions like, for instance, those of the ENS I once knew - a USNA grad, at that - that rewarded female sailors in her division with 24- 36- and 48-hour passes, and rewarded male sailors in her division with blowjobs.  That gives women in the service a bad reputation, and feeds preconceptions and stereotypes that can be very difficult to overcome.

Stick around.  I suspect that you'll make a find addition to the front porch.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

<span> I would amend "USMC Infantry" to "USMC".  We have plenny o' warriors in our CS and CSS MOSs.  Every Marine a rifleman.</span>

I sincerely hope we never get away from that ethos.

Actus Rhesus said...

"As a leader, your duty is to develop junior leaders, and not just the ones you like."

And sometimes we lead by telling people that they are idiots and need to STFU.  Especially when they are being insubordinate. This guy has given an absolute that he will not follow a woman, and here's the kicker, EVEN IF SHE'S BETTER THAN him.  Honestly, this is the internet.  It's hardly a fair measure of how anyone would behave if confronted with this kind of a situation in reality.  I'm not sure what I would do if I had a sailor tell me they wouldn't follow me because I'm a woman, but I'm sure I would seek guidance from other leaders before acting.
 
"It was your argument, counselor, that he could come back to you when he has proved himself."

Again, internets.  Not a fair measure of someones real-world mentoring.  If it is, I pity the people who have served under you.  Everyone becomes an asshole online.

"I pointed out that a Lance Corporal or Second Lieutenant with a couple of combat tours under their belts could view you precisely the same way.  Hardly a strawman.  And if it is, it is yours."

No.  Because I would never tell a LCpl or 2LT that they didn't belong somewhere.  This kid has never been out of a schoolhouse, and is telling me, who have already paid my dues, that I don't belong in the military because it makes him feel like he's been neutered.

The kid is being an idiot.  And maybe he will grow out of it.  Maybe he won't.  And yeah, maybe I should take some time and mentor him, but ask yourself, with a post like that, even if I was the second coming of Margaret Thatcher, do you think he'd listen to a damn thing I have to say?

Finally, as for the firing piece...I feel the same way about your threats.  Peace out!  
 
As for you firing me?  Marines follow me in combat.   Their opinions are what matters.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

I didn't.  Re-read.  "Don't presume to think" means just that. 

Grumpy Old Ham said...

<span>He is also identifying the very basic flaw in the Diversity argument that men and women are essentially the same.   </span>

Indeed...but then he plays right into their hands with:

"...That thing that women can’t understand about being a man. Part of being a man is that wolf-pack mentality. I don’t want someone who’s merely smart and capable. I want that alpha-wolf who leads the pack through sheer physicality and masculinity..."

IOW -- "I can only follow someone who looks like me."  Reference my comment at the beginning of the comment stream below, about providing the Diversity Mafias with enough ammo to justify their funding into the next millennium...

Scott Brim, USAF Partisan said...

Is her blood no less red when she has been wounded; and is her body no less dead when she has made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of her country?

justanENS said...

BSG,
Is your entire premise that USNA is doomed because females are there?
a) That's only slightly related to the original post, and thus it seems to me that you have your own little personal axe to grind and just wanted to use this as a forum for such.
b) When you defend said premise by resorting to name-calling and trivial personal attacks...pretty weak argument, if you ask me.
c) Just as I'm sure there were in your day, there are plenty of guys walking around USNA now that will shake your faith in the institution (along the lines of "do you really mean to tell me that HE met the entrance requirements and is going to eventually be a commissioned officer?") much more so than the women are capable of.

Actus Rhesus said...

Sorry.  Not buying it.

18 and 19 year old men are enlisting, serving, and dying.

He wants to be a man, so stop making excuses for him because he's young.

MR T's Haircut said...

Harvey is gone in August,, thank goodness

cdrsalamander said...

Sappy and sweet Scott, but does not help in the conversation. -1 to you.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

AR,

It is usually a good idea to speak to juniors as much as possible in a way that, absent the rank on one's collar, would not get your ass kicked.  Often a lesson forgotten in those of us who hold a commission. 

As for who he will listen to or not listen to, welcome to the challenges of the art of leadership.  You have to make him listen.  However you can.  Find what resonates with him.  Almost a guarantee calling him an "idiot" and telling him STFU will fall a little short. 

Oh, and the problem of maturing young leaders is hardly new.

As for pitying the Marines I led?  Find them and ask them.

Actus Rhesus said...

JustanENS,

yeah, but most of them are good football players, so it's okay.

Plus I hear they have access to great dope!

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Wild guess as to how many 19 year old male Marines in combat arms would think just as he does?

cdrsalamander said...

No, I'm serious. I spent my entire career with females.  Call one "sweetie" or "darl'n" like this and you are trying to start a fight. Trying to "put a girl in her place" - not the thing to do in this crowd unless you want .... to pick a fight.

He is trying to pick a fight .... why I felt the need to back up a bit ..... I'm not getting in the middle of that.  Only step higher than that is the "c" word. That flies between two people - I'm moving to the other room.  My face is too pretty to get marked up like that.

LazyChop said...

Does personal motivation (or "reason for joining") matter at all so long as you are an effective warfighter?

Most folks I've served with didn't join or didn't stay in purely for selfless reasons. Reality dictates a more complex approach to human motivations - desire to promote, desire to excel, want to get picked for command, want to fly a pointy-nosed go-fast, family concerns, career, poor economy, health care, etc.

James said...

I can understand that but also look at it this way. This means the young man also considers it part of Manhood TO protect and serve his people. Therefore he is in all actucality one of those you should look for isnt it?

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

no, you don't ignore history.  You just don't quote a portion of history completely out of context and try to justapose it onto something that is completely irrelevant.  Russians and Israelis threw women into combat when they were being overrun and all of the men were already either dead, captuerd or likewise fighting.  It was a moment of last resort.  It's like trying to make an argument about child soldiers and using Hitler in Germany as an example.  Not the best way to make a point.  And please don't say I'm equating women to children--I'm not.

cdrsalamander said...

CDR A.,
I wish you well ... but at this point I don't think I can help you.

Scott Brim, USAF Partisan said...

Cdr Salamander, isn't it the willingness to pay the ultimate price that separates warriors from those who are not?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

GOH,

Sure, it is what he thinks he wants.  And he has said so.  But after a couple of weeks of foot patrols in some lousy neighborhoods, he may think something like "I want that alpha-wolf who leads the pack with savvy, courage, and a professional understanding of the deadly tasks to be accomplished."

That this Middie's views are somewhat less than refined should be no surprise, nor should they be cause for condemnation and scorn. 

BUT.... anybody beginning to see the inherent problem with the concept of the "Strategic Corporal"?   Anyone?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

LazyChop,

Yeah, it does, to an extent.  The Army and USAF learned some difficult recruiting lessons with the "join and get money for college" push. 

I was on the accessions side when that happened.  Thankfully, the Navy didn't do much of that, and the Marines, none at all.   Both were conscious choices.   The desire to serve was always what we looked for.

cdrsalamander said...

Not germane to this topic - and as for your question; no.

Byron said...

George Patton would disagree strongly with you.

Actus Rhesus said...

and you can find and ask the sailors I've led :)

again, everyone is an asshole on the internet.

He writes an anonymous post, he gets an anonymous troll response and a big STFU.  However, Sal knows my personal and command e-mail addresses.  If this mid actually wants to discuss his points and be mentored, I'd be happy to help him.  He can even set up a sock e-mail account if he's afraid of retribution.

Perhaps hearing some of the things I've done, the people I've led, etc. will change his mind about women serving.  And before you start to criticize my leadership abilities or experience, no, I don't believe my experience is the same a a platoon or fire team leader's.  Apples and orages.  But modern warfare requires a lot more than the pointiest of the pointy end, somehitn this Mid doesn't seem to get.

Actus Rhesus said...

"My face is too pretty to get marked up like that"

Just stay behind me, I'll protect ya ;)

Scott Brim, USAF Partisan said...

Cdr Salamander, feel free to delete my post and all responses if you believe it adds no value to the discussion.

juan said...

It is human nature to more readily follow male leadership. Insisting that this fact of life is some unspeakably evil non-thought is an odd response.  There are women who've made great leaders and inspired devoted followers. But they are the exception.

From cult leaders to military leaders to political leaders to business leaders, the # of men who've inspired, for good or evil, large #s of fanatical followers dwarfs the # of women who've done the same.

It's just part of human nature. Has there ever been a female Steve Jobs?

Insisting that it's evil that men (and, shhh, women, too) more readily accept male leadership than female  doesn't change anything. Ignoring reality doesn't make it go away. And playing the sexist victim card stopped working almost 20 years ago now.

It doesn't mean women can't or shouldn't be leaders. But pretending they are interchangeable is just ignorant. Pretending we don't have different biological responses to men and women is ignorant.

But, hey, march the kid off to re-education camp! That'll show him to have non-thoughts like that.

Byron said...

"My face is too pretty to get marked up like that."

(bent over, in spasms of coughing...) I've never drunk enough beer to see you as pretty, Phib :-P

cdrsalamander said...

Scott,
You are being too emotional.  You are making fine points - they are just disconnected from this post. Re-read the post and some of the comments below and then re-engage.

Fiber my friend .... fiber.

James said...

And you just brought up another problem. What happens if say she gets knocked unconcious in a firefight at night and Mr Taliban comes and takes her away. The Taliban have tried and done it repeatedly. The unit is told to withdraw and wait for backup.

So about 5 hrs later her unit with a bunch of guys like the below (who now have come to consider her their ultimate mother figure) find her captors holded up in a village a few miles away.

Kristen and other such stop reading.



Then they get there and on the table of a hut is their squad leader the women who has lead them through the tough and easy. Fire and blood, sweat and tears........strapped to the table abviously has been gang raped and in the end tortured and had her throut slit. NOW what do they do? Hell i know what i would do i wouldnt be able to stop my self. You know those basterds in the village heard her screams did nothing and are now protecting the taliban........

I've heard the word Rational repeatedly said when it comes to people and war. War and especially young men who just found their mother figure strapped naked to a table with her throut cut and...well.......arent going to react rationaly.

Women in the military complicated women in combat far more so. Equal before the eyes of god and supposedly the law. But before the eyes of over 5,000,000 years of human evolution?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

"<span>Perhaps hearing some of the things I've done, the people I've led, etc. will change his mind about women serving."</span>

Exactly.  And you gotta.  And it ain't easy.  Especially for a female.  I am larger than most, and will admit that I played that card a time or two.  But I recognize that being less physically imposing, and a female at that, presents different challenges. 

I never criticized your leadership.  I did state that it isn't the same as that of a Sergeant squad leader in 2/6.   If you would really have dismissed this eager, testosterone-filled future leader as you stated here, then I would have criticized you harshly.  And yes, in my command you would have been shown the door. 

But I can't picture you doing that.

Of course the middie doesn't get that warfare, modern or otherwise, requires more than the pointiest of the pointy end.  Neither, in large measure, does a 19 year old PFC.  They will both learn as they grow and advance.  And it is up to we who do understand to find a way to teach them so they learn it.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

juan,

FWIW, my civilian job entails dealing with a largely female labor force (nurses), and many, many of them prefer male bosses. 

Though I don't know how much of the reason for that would be apparenty to the Middie here.  Probably next to nothing.

Byron said...

You know, I'd get all involved in a rebuttal to this comment, but I ain't got the time. The long and the short of it is that this has to be the most short sighted comment made today. Juan, go back and re-think you're comment. Saying stuff like that here is going to get you chopped up in two differenct directions, one for the one you insult and the other for making such a weak ass argument.

Oh...Queen Elizabeth1 and Margret Thatcher called and said to stand by to get your testicles turned into grout.

Byron said...

James, you're talking Arabs and Persians; they're as apt to rape a man as a woman. Argument won't hold water.

Boat School Grad said...

<span>"USNA is Doomed".  Allow me a bit of hyperbole.  And if you read the post thoughtfully you can clearly see that the hyperbole is related to the clear lack of thought by the subject, not the subject herself.  Your comments just re-enforces my point.</span>

James said...

True but then you dont train warriors to die. YOU want them to kill the enemy in the most efficent possible maner while not dying. The willingness to lay ones life down for another is not the halmark of a Warrior but that of a decent person and a patriot.

A American warrior is trained for war. Their job-whether its PC to say it or not-is to go into combat in some of the worst places in the world and defend the people, laws and constitution of the United states. In so doing they may endure horrible loss including their own lives.

This isnt about equal rights its about WHY the young man felt he needed to write that and what it means.

Byron said...

"When you're wounded and left on Afghanistans Plains for the women to come out and get you"

Kipling knew about how cruel women can be.

James said...

On a aside if you want to see a strong female character in a book read the Honor harrington series.

Also while i dont agree with everything he writes either S.M. Stirling's Series about Nantucket has a badass Coast guard captain who is (lol the ultimate dream of the diversity comisarat) Black, Gay, female, and a poor southerner.

MaryR said...

This. "<span> He needs to be heard and to have discussion of his views, but discussion in terms of his view of the world, not in the sincerity of his beliefs or his authority to have his own views--and views that may not match the grand strategies currently in vogue.  We need to bring guys like this further into the fold--not alienate them.  He has a bright future, he just needs a bit more maturity and some experience to round out his views."</span>

Great discussion by all and BRAVO Sal for airing his views.

James said...

Does for me. But then i'd just kill them all anyways so....

And we wont always be fighting the Arabs.....dont tell our current POTUS that though.

Actus Rhesus said...

fair enough.

like I said, never judge someone by how they act on the internet.  Everyone is an asshole on the internet.

http://www.google.com/imgres?hl=en&biw=1008&bih=560&tbm=isch&tbnid=_rjX0vuKcZCicM:&imgrefurl=http://redpenofdoom.com/2011/11/08/the-twitter-it-is-not-for-selling-books/&docid=5AEYV_AeUDddfM&imgurl=http://redpenofdoomdotcom.files.wordpress.com/2011/11/internet-tough-guy.jpg&w=750&h=600&ei=4f4mT-HcPKL30gH_1NzkCA&zoom=1&iact=hc&vpx=80&vpy=132&dur=2312&hovh=201&hovw=251&tx=102&ty=122&sig=106357225887840943134&page=1&tbnh=110&tbnw=135&start=0&ndsp=18&ved=1t:429,r:0,s:0

Boat School Grad said...

Sometimes I just wish I could Go-Go-Gadget my office chair into a GRU-7.  The profs at USNA must be suicidal.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Except Kristen. 

Scott Brim, USAF Partisan said...

My observation of those whom I think of as being true warriors -- I'm not one myself, but work closely every day with people who are -- is that for these people, being a warrior is partly an emotional experience and it is partly an intellectual exercise wherein they have examined their own attitudes and find no good reason to criticize themselves for not being in the mainstream of current societal thinking.

DeltaBravo said...

It may surprise our young Plebe and others here that women also are pack animals.  It starts early and the rules and hierarchy are very different than for males.  Also membership in the pack early on often is based on fear and terror of what will happen if they don't join the pack.  We've discussed this on the porch before.  I suspect most of the women who visit here are lone she-wolf types in that respect.  The leader of the female pack who leads other females often is the most vicious.  They'll devour their own who get out of line or challenge them.  And the pack will also turn on them too.  It's why many women prefer to work for men.   As for female leadership in general, Juan, think of what happens to the females in Iraq and Afghanistan who attempt to assert their authority.  The shelf life of females who attempt to rule or invent in many societies is very limited and thus we have few examples. It has nothing to do with their ferocity or competence.  But that's a discussion for a different day.

usnagirl12 said...

BSG, you're going to need to elaborate on what you just said...I'm not really sure what you're talking about.

juan said...

I re-thought it. I stand by it. Your response was weak and you didn't read what I wrote.
I said women have been great leaders. My point was that the ratio of great male to female leaders is massively skewed to in favor of males. You didn't rebut anything I said. You just pointlessly insulted me.
And to be clear, I believe this is mostly biological. I believe the evidence strongly supports the contention that human beings are hard-wired to more readily follow male leadership. This pattern has been observed throughout human history and across cultures.

That doesn't mean they won't follow females. Just that human beings are significantly more likely to follow males than females. And the intensity of their following will also be, on average, greater.

This is a ceteris paribus situation -- all things being equal. And for elite leaders we're talking the extremes of charisma.

But I stand by what I said and the thousands of years of human history that support my contention. Human beings are more easily led and inspired by male leadership. A male, bass voice produces a different biological response than a female voice. And this is not a cultural artifact of a sexist society, but a hard-wired biological response in humans.

Actus Rhesus said...

nah, even she can be a jerk on the right topic.

usnagirl12 said...

LT Rusty, my first reaction so this is to believe that it is just something heard from the rumor mill. I would hate to think that a female ENS was partaking in such demeaning behavior but I'm not naiive so I know that it probably has happened. However, not all women in the military are like this. Unfortunately, something as serious as this causes a real riot and automatically has people believe that this is how ALL women in the military act.  I hope to be one of those few female officers that work against that aweful sterotype and hopefully give other female officers a better name.  It will obviously be a tough task but I'm up for it.

DeltaBravo said...

(Coaching from the sidelines)  The proper response to that is to look him in the eye with enough firepower to make his...err... umm... feet...wither) and smile sweetly and quietly and evenly say: "If there was anything sweet or darling about me, I wouldn't be in the Navy.  Win your argument on its merits, not by denigrating me.  And either lead, follow, or get the hell out of my way."  Then disengage.  If they don't get the message they're beyond help. 

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