MST: Military Sexual Trauma

Recently, Marie Claire featured an article titled Life as an American Female Soldier and three women were brave enough to share their experiences in Kuwait and Iraq.

Sergeant Stephanie James described the pain of losing another soldier in an explosion and the devastation of seeing her squad leader carrying the sergeant's duty cap that was covered in blood. "No way around it," she writes. "Female soldiers deal with issues men don't even think about." She said she took the Depo-Provera shot so she wouldn't have to deal with her period overseas and her hair started falling out due to the stress.

James writes:

"In the military, they try to make things equal. Mainly, that means women are supposed to look like men. You can't wear earrings. Makeup can't be excessive. I didn't wear any, but I always carried ChapStick."

Captain Jennifer Errington described being sexually harassed by a master sergeant:

"Shortly after I got to Kuwait, a master sergeant asked if I'd join him to pick up some civilians at the airport. He was a well-respected man — married, with five daughters. At the airport, we got dinner from Burger King. Over dinner, the sergeant started telling me how he'd put my computer near his in the office so he could work closer to me. Later, as we were driving back to the base, he leaned over toward me and started to undo my seat belt. I was scared. He stopped the car. It was midnight. I had no idea where we were, and getting out of the car was as scary as staying in it. At some point, he placed my hand on his penis. I just looked out the window. You tell yourself, "It's fine," so nothing worse happens."

Specialist Ashley Pullen slept with her back to the wall so she could protect herself. She writes:

"When you looked out the window of my trailer in Iraq, all you could see was sand. My roommate was female, although the trailer was coed. At bedtime, I'd change into a pretty nightgown I brought from home. But I only wore stuff like that inside the trailer. Outside, we always had to wear our uniforms. At night, my roommate and I would hang mosquito netting on the door and turn the music up loud — everything from Avril Lavigne to the Dirty Dancing sound track. The guys would come over, and we'd dance. It was fun. After they left, though, I slept with my back to the wall so if somebody reentered the trailer, I could protect myself. The chance of rape during wartime is high."

PBS's NOW offers this statistic about sexual abuse in the military:

"Roughly one in seven of America’s active duty military soldiers is a woman, but a NOW investigation found that sexual assault and rape is widespread. One study of National Guard and Reserve forces found that almost one in four women had been assaulted or raped. Last year alone, almost 3,000 soldiers reported sexual assault and rape by other soldiers."

This abuse has a label: military sexual trauma, or MST. NOW aired this story and interviewed several women who were brave enough to speak out against the abuse that is causing the military so much shame.

Watching this twenty-five minute program brought tears to my eyes. These women enlisted in the military to serve their country only to be raped and assaulted by male soldiers. What's worse is that this abuse has been going on for decades.

During the first Gulf War alone, one in seven women were raped and that war was only a few months. In 2005, the Veterans Administration released the study of the National Gard and Army Reserves that found one in four women were sexually assaulted during active duty.

Because of the outrageous number of sexual assaults, Congress mandated the Department of Defense to control the issue. In 2005 the DOD created an office specifically to deal with sexual assault, and a toll free hotline was implemented to report incidents. Trained victim advocates are employed in every military installation.

The NOW investigation found that the military has done far too little to prevent sexual assault in the military and they've acted too slow.

Many female soldiers do not report the incidents for fear of how it will affect their careers. Too often the rape against a female soldier is carried out by a commanding officer. This is called Command Rape. Superior officers use their rank to intimidate and terrify their victims and many go unpunished because the victims are afraid of the consequences of reporting the incidents.

It sickens me to think about how many men have gotten away with this horrible crime. These women who are so brave to join the armed forces, women who endure months of grueling military training, are forced to feel like they have no rights. They are scared they will be blamed for the abuse, worried that nothing will happen if they do report it, or even worse, afraid they will be punished for speaking up. These women feel trapped. Where do you turn for support during a war?

Women who do report the abuse often feel a false sense of relief only to discover the perpetrator is given a slap on the wrist and a warning not to have any contact with the victim, but these orders are not enforced. Several female soldiers had to deal with seeing their attackers day after day after day. These women are forced to relive their trauma every time they see their attacker's face.

Stan Goff wrote about an NPR radio program called All Things Considered, that talked about female combat veterans suffering post-traumatic stress disorder due to combat and sexual abuse by fellow male soldiers.

"The Miles Foundation, that tracks violence against women in military communities, found that "prevalence of adult sexual assault among female veterans has been estimated as high as 41%." My own conversations with women vets supports this estimate, and they report the fear of sexual assault to be a constant. So I was surprised that National Pentagon Radio did the story, and glad that they did. The majority of these assaults are punished with administrative wrist-slaps... because boys stick up for boys as a general rule, and boys are still 85% in the armed forces. Machismo. Misogyny. Iraq and Afghanistan."

Due to the large number of sexual assaults, the military is urging victims to come forward, and has created an option called Restricted Reporting in which victims can get medical care, and the assault is kept confidential, but an investigation is not immediately triggered.

Since Restricted Reporting was introduced the number of reported incidents has gone up. In 2006, 2,947 cases were reported, compared to 1700 in 2004. But out of 1400 investigations last year, only 72 people have received court martials.

Whether or not the attackers are brought to justice, these women are scarred for life. Many suffer psychological trauma and permanent emotional wounds. These women suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. It is not just due to combat. Rape and sexual assault are the number one causes of the disorder.

Some women will enter therapy to address the pain they are suffering and to start the process of recovery. But military treatment programs are few and far between. When the troops do finally come home, how many more cases of PTSD will come to light?

What is the government going to do to help these veterans?


Contributing Editor Dana J. Tuszke also blogs at The Dana Files.

Posted by Dana J. Tuszke at October 5, 2007 12:18 AM
Comment #235323

Dana once again a great article, your the only conservative writer here I have agreed with so many times in such a short period of time.

Now onto the topic:
This is a complicated issue, that will not have an easy answer. There are many problems standing in the way:

1. Unfortunately society as a whole still questions rape victims and actually oftentimes makes it worse for the victims by so often not belieiving them.

2. It is made even worse during this time of rabid “Support Our Troops” mindlessness. Sure we should support our troops but unfortunately today people are so obsessed with supporting our troops that anyone who says anything bad about any soldier or soldiers is seen as commiting treason. Thus these female soldiers who report rape or sexual assault are seen as slandering “our troops” instead of being seen as victims of sexual violence. Thus the public, by in large, supports the sexual predator instead of the victim. Sadly.

3. It can be seen in the same way as much of the American public were not mad at those who committed the atrocities at Abu Gharib and instead were mad at who reported or talked about those atrocities. We have become a nation that puts our troops up on such a high level, now yes they should be seen in a high level but not this high of a level that we are now seeing them as, that they are perfect and anyone who questions anything they do is evil.

What we need to do is convince people to not just “Support our Troops” but to “Support Our Troops Who Do Not Rape, Sexually Assault, or Torture”.

We need to get past this stupid idea of supporting all of our troops. We need to support the good troops, and the majority of our troops are good troops, and to weed out and punish the bad apples that make the good troops look bad.

Posted by: Richard Rhodes at October 5, 2007 1:21 AM
Comment #235325

These statistics don’t surprise me at all. I have read of American soldiers creating international incidents through rape in S. Korea, Japan, and other places. Iraq has to be one of the worst places for our soldiers and their testosterone levels and boredom between shifts. No red light districts, and I am sure command is very strict about our soldier’s interaction with local women given the social norms of the country and the incredible vengeance that would be exacted against any American soldiers for raping Iraqi women. All of which leaves our American female soldiers the more vulnerable to attack.

There is no excuse for such acts, only sociological reasons that have for decades been able to predict this would be the case in Iraq. The perpetrators should be punished, but, command must also shoulder some responsibility. Given the sexual harassment within our military academies here in the U.S. which were headlines before 9/11, it was absolutely predictable that command’s failed responsibility to protect women in our academies, would have been exported to Iraq.

Of course the logical remedy would be for the Bush administration to hire ‘Rosewater’ private services for our troops in our Iraq. But, ironically, the Bush administration would condemn such traveling professional brothels in the Green Zone, but, Blackwater services, immune from any law, well, that’s a just and worthwhile expense of tax payer dollars. Make war, not love. The Bush slogan for Iraq if honesty were a virtue. And rape is preferable and far more tolerable than professional brothel services. That is readily clear.

Posted by: David R. Remer at October 5, 2007 1:30 AM
Comment #235328


Great article. One stupid question ………. which political party usually resists investigating these kind of incidents? OK, two questions ………… which party usually gets bashed for looking into such incidents?

Posted by: KansasDem at October 5, 2007 2:05 AM
Comment #235330

As I was just about to drift off to sleep I thought, “Dana must be an Eisenhower Republican”.

That would be refreshing.

Posted by: KansasDem at October 5, 2007 3:12 AM
Comment #235337


Excellent article.
Very sad.

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at October 5, 2007 9:21 AM
Comment #235341

The higher incidence of rape in the Iraq/Afganistan era vs. the earlier Gulf War is interesting to me. I don’t think it is strictly a reporting issue.

There has been in our society as a whole a steady degradation of the social status of women, to the point they have become little more than toys in the culture’s eyes. As a father of teenage girls I can hardly express my alarm at this.

Men in the military are, if anything, more susceptible to these messages about the sexual objectification of girls and women. They live under a kind of stress society does not prepare them for in a social environment that demands a kind of psychological unity unknown in civilian life, and the civilian authorities inject women the culture has trained boys to see as objects of dominion and psychological stress release. Both the women and the men are abused in this equation.

This is a situation that can’t be separated from the culture at home. Don’t train kids at home girls are toys. Don’t let girls think they are toys. Don’t let boys believe girls are either toys, or, as some of my evangelical bretheren have sometimes intimated to me, that if the girl let you “have your way” it was HER fault.

It is a contemptible flaw in American life that we fail to see girls and women as whole persons apart from their sexuality. The situation in Iraq is not a disease. It is a symptom.

And KansasDem, that’s the fault of all of us.

Dana, good article.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 5, 2007 10:44 AM
Comment #235355
The higher incidence of rape in the Iraq/Afganistan era vs. the earlier Gulf War is interesting to me. I don’t think it is strictly a reporting issue.

it’s a matter of a war that took, what, a couple months (?) to a “war” that has lasted over 4.5 years…plus, there are is most likely a higher raio of women in Iraq than there was in Kuwait…

Posted by: Rachel at October 5, 2007 12:31 PM
Comment #235358

The build-up to the Gulf War took more than six months. There was then an extended period of elevated U.S. presence in the Gulf Region as the results of the war itself were consolidated. There are apples and oranges comparisons in terms of war-related stresses, but during the build-up the Iraqi Army was, at least in the American press, touted as a formidable fighting force and the world’s third largest standing army.

So, the point was there was stress and people were exposed to that stress, for the first time with females exposed intentionally to and as a part of combat units at close hand. If you are disputing that as a valid comparison are you also disputing the point of the post?

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 5, 2007 1:35 PM
Comment #235359

KansasDem… c’mon man… Dana writes a great article that makes NO MENTION of either major political party and you chime in with that? Gotta admit, you sometimes leave me scratching my head.

You imply something terrible when you insinuate that somehow Republicans care less about rape victims than Democrats… Please tell me I read your post wrong?

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at October 5, 2007 1:56 PM
Comment #235368

Can it be as simple as respect….applied evenly and consistently?
I am capable of driving a nail, a van full of kids to soccer games, and a stick shift….and enjoy receiving a boquet of flowers and a mushy card. I had my own dirt bike, hunted alongside the guys, and still have my own guns. I stood behind with a curled up nose as my husband gutted and cleaned fish and pheasants, then was more than happy to prepare them in meals.
I like ruffles and lace, but have worn leather.
I can do things for you (guys) that make you smile….just as you can do for me (us).
I think we all get the point, and still think respect is a major consideration here. I also fervently believe that upbringing, or the lack of it, is a major factor how we treat each other.
I am not minimizing the subject of your post in any way, Dana……you are right on, as in your others ! It is a major concern that anyone be subjected to what is going on..anywhere! This war has created levels of stress in many ways and places, and will take a long time for that all to go away. Total insanity !

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at October 5, 2007 3:20 PM
Comment #235369

Amen on that Doug.

Posted by: kctim at October 5, 2007 3:21 PM
Comment #235374

Great article. One stupid question ………. which political party usually resists investigating these kind of incidents? OK, two questions ………… which party usually gets bashed for looking into such incidents?

Posted by: KansasDem at October 5, 2007 02:05 AM

Where do you get any implication from what he said??? It’s a question… Posted by: Sandra Davidson at October 5, 2007 4:11 PM
Comment #235376

Sandra… the implication is obviously there for anyone not blinded by partisan loyalty to see.

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at October 5, 2007 4:24 PM
Comment #235379


They certainly are two different wars…lots more stress in fighting where you’re always a second away from getting blown up by an IED…also, it’s different fighting a war sanctioned by the UN and a war that’s a patently illegal invasion/occupation of a sovereign country whose people don’t even want us there…

I still maintain that the longevity of the war is what causes the majority of stress…longer deployments, longer war.

Posted by: Rachel at October 5, 2007 4:28 PM
Comment #235390

Doug…..that’s absurd. Id KD were not well-known on here would your response be the same ?( which leans significantly itself.)

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at October 5, 2007 5:31 PM
Comment #235391

Good article, and it is a shame that Americans both male and female are having to be stuck in the middle of a civil war that we have no business being there.

Rape/sexual assualt is wrong no matter who does it. When I was in, I had a 1st Sargent chase a female, and she ended up hiding out in the men latrine. He also tried to coerse my wife into having sex with him, telling her it would make things easier on me. In the end a DA investigation was done, and he was out not long after that.

Posted by: KT at October 5, 2007 5:43 PM
Comment #235399

Look Rachel,
Under no circumstances is it an excusable thing for a man to coerce a woman into sex or force himself on her. Period.

None the less, we are party to a culture that uses women like party favors. We use the promise of their sexuality to sell anything and everything. We openly denegrate them in popular music, on television, and in movies, where, if they’re not less than forty and beautiful, not seducing someone or being seduced, well what serious cultural purpose do they serve?

The men we send to Iraq to be stressed out in near constant battle are raised in this cesspool of disregard for women. They react to that stress by resorting to the basest of the permissions OUR CULTURE gave them. WE tell them “yes” and WE show them “yes” and then we wink at them and whisper “but, really, no”- and think well of ourselves for having given them high moral direction! B.S.!

What is happening in Iraq is not the fault of “the military” and it is not the fault of “the war”. It is our fault for raising our boys in a culture that refuses to see women as whole, fully respectable, fully sacred human beings. If you women reading this are OK with that you’re a part of the problem, too.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 5, 2007 7:28 PM
Comment #235402

Doug Langworthy,

I was not referring only to “rape victims” but wrongdoing in general regarding members of our military. Would you argue that Dems are not “trashed” by the right wing every time we begin an investigation into alleged military or Pentagon wrongdoing?

Remember the Lynch / Tillman Hearing?

To my knowledge Bush has still failed to fully comply with Henry Waxman’s requests information.

In just the past few days the story of National Guard Spc. Ciara Durkin who was found with a single gunshot wound to her head behind a building at Bagram Airbase on Sept. 27 has been in the press.

Senators Kennedy, Kerry, and Rep. William Delahunt (all Democrats) are looking into this. We’ll have to see how the DOD handles it.

Posted by: KansasDem at October 5, 2007 8:43 PM
Comment #235403

Sandra Davidson,

In addition to what I just said to Doug ……… my post last night was atrocious. What can I say? I’m not a professional writer.

But, Dana blows my mind. I have a hard time believing she’s a Republican. Maybe compassion does exist in the conservative heart.

I would hope that any Republican/conservative would take being compared to Ike as a compliment.

Posted by: KansasDem at October 5, 2007 9:28 PM
Comment #235405

As I understand it (or at least it’s what I’ve heard feminist activists say) somewhere between a third and a quarter of CIVILIAN women have been assaulted or raped.

I see the claim here that as many a quarter of active service military women have been, but are there any statistics that compare the rate in the military to the rate in the civilian population?

I’d hesitate to start trying to come up with explanations for why this goes on in the military before figuring out if it’s a problem unique to the military or just a reflection of the society at large (of which members of the military are just one cross section).

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at October 5, 2007 10:09 PM
Comment #235407

Kansas Dem… my bad… see, I thought you were using it as an example to say reps didn’t care about rape, but in actuality you were just using this blank comments area here in which I am typing to rail against the other side for no reason at all other than just to rail against them… not to mention, by your own words, your comments about their “wrongdoing in general” had nothing to do with the article above…

ok… so you don’t like republicans… we get it… if your comment wasn’t about rape, though, and was just an excuse to cry foul about what bad people they are in ‘general’… then, like I said, my bad… that’s not as bad as what I thought you were saying…

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at October 5, 2007 10:53 PM
Comment #235416

Loyal Opposition: We should also compare the number of convictions and imprisonment for rape in the private sector with those in the military.

If it is true that the incidents of rape in the military is higher, it may be because the military is more lenient on perpetraters and less receptive to the accusations of female military personel. A he said, she said attitude discourages investigation, encourages would be perpetrators and discourages victims from reporting incidents.

Posted by: jlw at October 6, 2007 9:51 AM
Comment #235417


You’re being ridiculous about this whole thing. Dana’s article was about sexual abuse of women in the MILITARY. I was addressing problems within the military in general. And I am quite comfortable saying that historically Democrats have been more willing than their Republican counterparts to investigate abuses and misdeeds within our military.

Furthermore I already went as far as saying, “my post last night was atrocious”! Not good enough for you?

Please, if you disagree with my aforementioned claim, do so. Show me some examples of Republicans pursuing in depth investigations into military conduct, and Democrats obstructing the process. It’s certainly easy for me to support my contention to the contrary as far back as John Kerry’s testimony to congress regarding military conduct during the war in Vietnam.

Or do you prefer using this forum as “just an excuse to cry foul about what bad people [I am] in ‘general’”?

Posted by: KansasDem at October 6, 2007 10:24 AM
Comment #235418


Thought we were trying to ascertain why there is such a large rate of rape among soldiers in Iraq…your explanation seems to be pretty much a cop-out…why does the military, which is supposedly very regimented, treat its women soldiers as chaff? Why are rapes not investigated? What is there about the military that, seemingly, condones sexual harrassment and rape against its female members??

Where did you get the figure that, among the civilian population, 25% of women/girls are raped/assaulted???

Posted by: Rachel at October 6, 2007 10:37 AM
Comment #235421

KansasDem… you’re right… your post was atrocious… I’ll leave it at that…

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at October 6, 2007 11:29 AM
Comment #235422


I had heard Doug’s 25% figure for civilian women as well, though, off the top of my head I can’t name the source. The caveat to that, to be honest though, is the matter of timescales. The civilian figure is a lifetime average, not an average accrued over a short military career.

My point is that both crimes against women in general and rape specifically have long been treated lightly in the population as a whole. The idea that either party has a handle on the issue is purest folly. Democrats love to rail against abuse of women in the military (a group that does not support them generally) while they turn a blind eye to the culture of abuse and degradation of girls and women in minority communities. Republicans love to point out the media and entertainment industry’s (a group that does not support them generally) profiteering on the backs of girls and women and the hypocrisy of their public feminism and progressive connections while we frankly try to look the other way on the embarrassment of military sexual abuse. The dirty truth is, though, whatever our partizan connections may be these problems are not multiple problems. They are one problem both parties and everyone in between share.

We, the whole of American culture, want to use sex as a drug and pretend there are no consequences to doing so. That attitude empowers men to abuse and degrade women. So, whether we, as Democrats, turn a blind eye to that degradation among minorities, or we, as Republicans, turn a blind eye to the degradation of women in the military we are all enabling the abuse of women in general.

And don’t cry about connections to feminism, either. That “movement” really focused on trying to empower women to use sexuality as coercively as its founders felt men were able to use it. The single most important factor to so-called “mainstream” feminism has been to disconnect sex from procreation so that women could treat men with the same callous disregard the lowest common denominator of male behavior applied to them. The trouble with this notion is that sex-the-drug is more emotionally disabling for women, even as its promise of easy sexuality allows men to be even more callous and uncivil.

You can’t fix the problems with male culture by making women appear more promiscuous. In the troglodite dregs of male attitudes, ever expanding in our permissive society, that just turns girls and women into soulless playthings.

Fighting with each other over whose brand of sexual abuse we should fix just perpetuates the problem and keeps us arguing with each other- to the benefit of the politcal parties.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 6, 2007 11:32 AM
Comment #235423

Is it just me, or shouldn’t we be expecting better than this from those that volunteer to serve our country?

Yeah, I know sometimes humans will be humans, but this seems to give a new meaning to the phrase “Be all that you can be”.

One would think that we could have gone beyond this “good ol’ boy” image, and we should expect our troops to be a bit more cerebral than the general public.

I, for one, don’t think we are in such dire straits that we need to accept sexual predators to represent us in our military, and these yahoos should have been rooted out before they left boot camp.

The vast majority of our men in uniform truly do represent the ideals that are America, and those that don’t should be treated as harshly as the law allows.

Posted by: Rocky at October 6, 2007 11:43 AM
Comment #235424

Uummm… Lee… “Doug’s 25% figure”? I’ve never heard that figure anywhere. I believe it was Loyal Opposition above that said “somewhere between a third and a quarter of CIVILIAN women have been assaulted or raped.”

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at October 6, 2007 11:49 AM
Comment #235427

Your post appeared intended to paint Republicans as uncaring about sexual abuse in the military. That’s simply unfair. Your following posts have made no attempt to show you think we might actually not feel that way. Nor even do they seem to accept we might, since the clear majority of women in the military are the daughters of Republicans and Republicans themselves, have a stake in this matter.

Doug was right to call you on that. It is not impossible to believe that is not what you intended. Prejudice can blind us to the consequences of our misperceptions. The point of continuing the issue is to see if the attitudes you have shown are totally inflexible “that’s the way it is” sort of stuff (“Republicans are a different sort of animal from me”) or if you can accept that we find this troubling as well.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 6, 2007 11:58 AM
Comment #235428

Sorry, Doug.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 6, 2007 12:00 PM
Comment #235430

The teaching starts with the parents, and ends with the parents. Then the law needs to be no-holds-barred. Until women are treated equally across the board in this society, it will continue. It’s an insidious attitude, similar to racism.

One would think that we could have gone beyond this “good ol’ boy” image

Not as long as there are “good ol’ boys”.

That “movement” really focused on trying to empower women to use sexuality as coercively as its founders felt men were able to use it.

Quite an overgeneralization. There were extremists, just as there are in any group of beliefs. I believe you really know better than that.

Posted by: womanmarine at October 6, 2007 12:05 PM
Comment #235431

Rocky had do you want to weedout the sexual predators?
It is hard enough to do it in the civilian sector let alone the military.
Look at the Federal Procustor who hung himself in Milan Mi, he came from Fl to Mi to have sex with a 5yr old or so he thought so, should everybody be required to take a lie-detector test prior to being hired.

The military has all the problems of the civilian world but compressed in a smaller area, and most of the time under a lot more stress.

Don’t make it sound that being in the military makes you holler then other because it’s doesn’t. Military has drug problems, spouse abuse(both against male and female), money problems etc, it is just that usually it does not make the news outside of post.

Sexually abuse is wrong period, but at the same time you have to be careful to make sure it is not just someone crying wolf, because they were caught doing something they should have not been doing,(i.e Duke Lacrosse Players).

The military has been trying to solve the problems by education to the military members but then again the civilian world does the same. Unfortunately it is going to happen.

Oh, for you info, I am retired military, work now in a police department, and my wife was raped while I was still in the military, so I do have a little background and knowledge on this subject.

Posted by: KT at October 6, 2007 12:14 PM
Comment #235433

I have a source for the civilian statistics. This is not exactly what we have been saying, in that the actual percentage for “rape or sexual assault” is 18 percent. The quote goes like this-

“25 percent of surveyed women, compared with 8 percent of surveyed men, said they were raped and/or physically assaulted by a current or former spouse, cohabiting partner, or date in their lifetime; 1.5 percent of surveyed women and 0.9 percent of surveyed men said they were raped and/or physically assaulted by such a perpetrator in the previous 12 months.”
It is taken from a Centers for Disease Control paper published in 1998. that would be about right given my memory of the source I recalled.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 6, 2007 12:15 PM
Comment #235434

Let’s try to make that pdf link hot.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 6, 2007 12:24 PM
Comment #235443

Sadly, what I see lifted up as “the women’s movement” is not much better than that.

Do we see strong support for programs intended to make families stronger or increase the involvement of men in childrearing? I don’t.

Do we see strong “feminist” support for initiatives to make the public more aware of how girls and women are exploited as sexual objects in movies, advertizing, and music? I don’t.

Do we even see strong “feminist” support for initiatives which would try to point out that the most public faces of Muslims today are nowhere near as forward looking in their attitudes toward women as Mohammed himself was (His wife was a wealthy trader and major civic leader.)? Again, I don’t.

The feminist movement seems, from my vantage point, to be a one note Charlene. I grew up in a family full of intelligent, assertive, educated women who knew their place was not to be some man’s footstool. THEY have not seen themselves served by the focus of this “movement”.

Sorry for getting off the point of this string.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 6, 2007 12:59 PM
Comment #235444

So, Lee, what men’s movements do what you think the women’s movement should do? Who are you to decide what they should do?

I think much of the progress made for/by women is due to this movement. My own personal experience. What’s yours?

Posted by: womanmarine at October 6, 2007 1:03 PM
Comment #235447


Do you mean to tell me that there is no psychological profiling done in the military?
Do you assume that because women have been included in our military forces shit happens?

One would hope that even though these folks are exposed to massive amounts of stress, they should be able to differentiate between friend and foe, and, theoretically at least, these women are on our side.
Though I haven’t served in the military, I have come to understand that, for the most part, the idea is to support/help/stand-by/save, your buddies.
Where exactly does rape fit into that equation?

Can I assume that those who have a calling to serve, aren’t there just because of an over abundance of testosterone?

Posted by: Rocky at October 6, 2007 1:13 PM
Comment #235448

While it’s a long read the New York Times Magazine had a great cover story about this here:

The Women’s War
Published: March 18, 2007

Posted by: KansasDem at October 6, 2007 1:15 PM
Comment #235454

Lee Jamison,

Remember the Tailhook scandal?

Oh yeah that was just a liberal witch-hunt wasn’t it?

A sample of what I consider typical conservative spin:

“The national hysteria over Tailhook, whipped up by the feminist left, resulted in one of the most extensive witch hunts in American history. It ended the careers of hundreds of seasoned officers, admirals of flag rank and war heroes, many of whom were not even at the Tailhook convention or who did not participate in its celebrated events. The pressure to destroy the “male culture” of the military led to more lost careers than were destroyed by Sen. Joseph McCarthy.”


“These politically inspired assaults have been mounted under the banner of “desexegrating” the military (the term was coined by former Rep. Patricia Schroeder, D-Colo., who has led the crusade). The idea is to put women in combat and combat-support roles once reserved for men, as though the problems associated with such a profound shift were trivial and the rationale for preserving male prominence in combat were the same as the Jim Crow reasoning employed by white supremacists to preserve their domination in the segregationist South.”

And, look, I’ve already said my original post was atrocious.

atrocious: def:
a: utterly revolting
b: of very poor quality

If that’s not good enough then I guess it’s your problem, but I stand by what I was attempting to say which I’ve since explained.

Posted by: KansasDem at October 6, 2007 2:02 PM
Comment #235463

Yes Rocky Shit happens period with/without women in the military, and no they do not any real psychological testing. Look at all the problems that those returning from Iraq are having with PTSD, along with those from Nam, and trying to get help, see how many domestic’s happen plus the suicides/murders from those returning, if they have known problems when the return do you think the military checks them out before the enter.

I served because I want to do something for my country, not because I had an over dose of testosterone, I was drafted and could have went to Canada as easy as going to the reception station. Long hours, low pay, and away from my family for more times then I care to count, and lack of respect from most Americans.

Anyway this is all off the original subject, and I am off my soap box

Posted by: KT at October 6, 2007 4:13 PM
Comment #235474


You missed the point entirely.

The point is that even though men and women are thrown together in the military, and even though “shit happens” in stressful situations, there is no excuse for rape.


Those in the military are supposed to have a sense of comradery, they are buddies, they are “Brothers in arms”, they’re supposed to stick together through thick and thin, they’re supposed to have each others back.
That is supposed to include the women.

Oh, and BTW, PTSD isn’t unique to the last 50 years.
Hell, it isn’t unique to the last 100 years.

It has been known as “Soldiers heart” in the Civil War, “Shell shock” in WW1, and “Combat fatigue” in WW2.

And please, don’t try to tell me that the military excepts everybody that volunteers. Boot camp is supposed to be a physical, and psychological test to weed out those that are unfit for duty.

Posted by: Rocky at October 6, 2007 6:56 PM
Comment #235475

I apologize if you feel hard leaned upon. That was not my aim.
And to the extent the military, or indeed any male-oriented organization takes lightly its resposibility to conduct itself with a full measure of human respect for anyone, male or female, they have failed in the pursuit of the honor they must represent to us to be trusted by civilian society.

Tailhook was a good example of an abomination visited upon the honor of the entire U.S. military and chainsaw surgery was an entirely appropriate approach to dealing with the corruption it revealed.

As to Womanmarine’s address of the issue of men’s organizations versus women’s organizations, (Sorry, I gotta hurry. My wife just got here and I’ll have to stop playing with you guys) that’s a little funny. When men’s organizations try to tell society what to do these day all hell breaks loose. Women are more than half of the population. They can have a tremendous impact on the course of society without giving in to male fantasies and women’s buying into men’s conceit about the importance of their role in civilization. Women can do a lot by how they support and strengthen each other and teach our children.

On my personal blog I wrote an article called Parallel Cultures some months ago. It describes what I think is wrong with modern culture’s disregard for women’s culture and its role in human history.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 6, 2007 7:34 PM
Comment #235477


For all intents and purpose, you sound like what used to be called a feminist. It’s a sign of how far “feminist” ideas have permeated the mainstream that you can accept all the basic principles and still dismiss “feminism.” This is not a criticism, per se. I was impressed with your sentiments.

I do think it is untrue, though, to accuse women’s movements of having one note. If you look at NOW’s website, you can find a host of issues in which NOW is active. Here’s the link.

It’s a well-known phenomenon for a movement to be castigated even after much of what it fought for has been achieved. That’s not really a feminist thing.

Posted by: Gerrold at October 6, 2007 7:54 PM
Comment #235484

Rocky said “And please, don’t try to tell me that the military excepts everybody that volunteers. Boot camp is supposed to be a physical, and psychological test to weed out those that are unfit for duty.”

Well Rocky it doesn’t, and no the military does not accept everyone Shit happens and assholes slip thru the system, as you see from reading the article.

Oh basic training has changed over the years it is now easier then when I was in(how do I know because I had two sons in at the time the IRAQ bs war started), and I am sure when I went thru it was easier then when my dad went thur in WWII

Posted by: KT at October 6, 2007 9:17 PM
Comment #235488


I’m just accepting the kind of family in which I grew up, where, in the 1960s and earlier, a woman could be a physician, or a newspaper columnist, or the head of Christian Education for the Louisiana Conference of the Methodist Church, or a college professor, or even a mom determined to raise boys to respect women and think logically.

It’s not that I think N.O.W. and other organizations have not been necessary, but, ridiculously, they have permitted themselves to become attached to political parties and very specific, virulently polarizing issues like abortion that alienated them from half or more of their potential constituencies.

That sort of thing actually has the effect of standing in the way of real progress.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 6, 2007 10:20 PM
Comment #235493


You lived in a very progressive family in the 60s. You were very lucky to have such enlightened parents.

My folks are great, but were not intellectual, and the traditional gender roles were accepted as the unquestioned norm. It really wasn’t until I was in college that other ideas really hit me. (The dreaded liberalism of the university ;) —)

One can disagree on specific issues (I am deeply ambivalent about abortion) and still acknowledge and respect the feminist movement as an utterly essential force in our society. We in this country (and in the West in general) can be proud of the enormous strides that women have made in our society.

(Besides, relationships between “equals” are much more interesting.)

Posted by: Gerrold at October 6, 2007 11:09 PM
Comment #235498


I don’t feel “leaned on”. But I am a bit ticked off that you and Doug chose to focus on my “atrocious” post rather than focus on my intent which I made very clear afterwards.

Consider that Duncan Hunter has continued to question a womans place in the military as recently as 2005:

Role of Women in US Military Gets Renewed Debate

I’m not making up anything! Beginning in the 70’s and especially in the 80’s I’ve paid a hell of a lot of attention to politics and I can guarantee you that the Democrats in congress are more likely to investigate abuses by the military (whether internal or external) and the Republicans are more likely to at least complain about it if not obstruct the process.

There’s nothing personal about it. Dana posted about sexual abuse of females in the military. I focused on military issues in general. I guess I could say that “I don’t see gender”! Does that ring a bell?

Posted by: KansasDem at October 7, 2007 12:11 AM
Comment #235499

BTW Rocky has made some very valid and reasonable points if you care to look at the facts:

“Thousands of U.S. soldiers in Iraq — as many as 10 a day — are being discharged by the military for mental health reasons. But the Pentagon isn’t blaming the war. It says the soldiers had “pre-existing” conditions that disqualify them for treatment by the government.”

That’s DOD talk for you ain’t gettin’ no money a$$H%!@! But let’s continue:

“The result appears to be that many actually suffering from combat-related problems such as post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injuries don’t get the help they need.”

Yeah, we support our troops ……….. (sigh)!


(I will admit that Republican Senator Kit Bond has cosponsored legislation to end this nonsense) Kit Bond earns my approval as an Eisenhower Republican. (Someone that has true compassion)

Posted by: KansasDem at October 7, 2007 12:47 AM
Comment #235500

Pre-existing conditions. Interesting. We were so desperate for bodies?

Makes you wonder.

Posted by: womanmarine at October 7, 2007 12:58 AM
Comment #235503


It also blows holes in the “we couldn’t possibly know they were messed up” defense. If the DOD didn’t know then they can’t deny bennies. If the DOD did know they can’t claim ignorance.

The only other possibility is they’re all a bunch of liars! I sometimes think that the VA taught the insurance companies how to screw people out of their benefits.

SNAFU doesn’t just happen, it’s created by the bureaucracy to keep us going in circles.

Posted by: KansasDem at October 7, 2007 1:40 AM
Comment #235505

My issue with writing these things about the military is the implication that there is something inherent in the soldiers or the institution that causes bad behavior. Military life is certainly stressful. Some situations military personnel face are unique or at least unusual. But if you scrutinize anything or anyone in isolation, you can easily take away the wrong conclusion.

In the military you have lots of young people living in close proximity. How does the rate of crime in the military compare to that of the general population? Is the incidence of sexual assault higher in the military than in coed dorms? How about among groups of young people traveling together in mixed gender groups? What about in and around youth hostels?

Compared with civilian populations of their age, military personnel are exceptionally polite and well behaved. Ask yourself this question. If you are walking alone down a dimly lit street in a not-so-good neighborhood and you notice a half a dozen youths coming your direction, are you more or less concerned if you notice they are wearing military uniforms? I personally feel safer on military bases than on ordinary city streets (not that I feel particularly threatened on either) and I notice women walking and running alone in the night.

So we come to the old “compared to what?” standard. Pointing to a serious problem often precludes that needful comparison, but it always needs to be made. Is the murder rate in Wisconsin terrible? Yes. We could write a whole book on the atrocities in the Badger State. But is it better or worse than other places? We might well choose a different worst place than relatively peaceful Wisconin.

You have to be very careful with statistics too. Do you know that the “average person” has less than two legs? Think about that. Nobody has more than two legs, so the few people with less than both limbs pull the average below two for the entire population. Statistics always require context.

Posted by: Jack at October 7, 2007 1:58 AM
Comment #235507


“So we come to the old “compared to what?”

Do we need to compare the support system that a raped woman might have in Wisconsin to the support system the same woman might have in Iraq?

The point isn’t that our men in the military are inherently bad, or even that we might compare the statistics between Wisconsin and a “war zone”.

These men and women put their lives on the line for each other every day.
Just how often should we expect a brother to rape his sister?

No sir, IMHO these women have lost something they will never get back, and they have lost it to someone that they should have been able to trust with their lives, in an area of the world where they can trust no one else. If I was a woman in the military, I would hope that I could expect better from my brothers in arms.

If I couldn’t, then exactly what are we fighting for?

Posted by: Rocky at October 7, 2007 9:34 AM
Comment #235510

And then we find a comparison that allows us to shuttle aside disturbing truths: well, the incidence of rape in the military is roughly similar to that on college campuses. Then, reassured, we can deflect any discussion of rape in the military with an automatic trotting out of other statistics. And we can assure ourselves that we see the big picture. It’s a neat psychological trick.

Let’s not kid ourselves; that’s how many minds work.

Posted by: Gerrold at October 7, 2007 10:42 AM
Comment #235513

For those that might have doubts about women and PTSD, here is an essay from a woman back from Iraq.
In the quote, I left in the words some people might find offensive, and this essay some folks might find rather long.

“For a while I was giddily happy. I was also the cockiest thing you ever saw. The VA would term this “Bravado” and I never did receive an answer to my question: did they call male veterans this? Even without an M-16 at my side, surviving death just about every day seemed to do something to my confidence level. I was a combat veteran and a liberal. I was the dreaded answer to every wingnut who proclaimed that women didn’t belong in combat because men would try and protect them. (In my case, that protection amounted to asking me to carry the extra ammo—-about ten extra pounds.) More than that, I was someone that didn’t appear often in the public consciousness: a liberal pinko commie hippie feminazi combat veteran with a mouth and a blog and a tendency to interrupt conversations just because. For a few months after I got home, life (for me) was heaven. I frankly enjoyed being part of a small and select group that fucked up demographics and confounded characterization. Bite me, Rush. I’m your worst nightmare.”

I can only take this essay at face value, but because it came from the Internet, judge it as you wish.

Posted by: Rocky at October 7, 2007 12:04 PM
Comment #235520
I’m just accepting the kind of family in which I grew up, where, in the 1960s and earlier, a woman could be a physician, or a newspaper columnist, or the head of Christian Education for the Louisiana Conference of the Methodist Church, or a college professor, or even a mom determined to raise boys to respect women and think logically.
It sounds like somebody likes to wax nostalgia. Or perhaps in this person’s case the situation as described was true, but back in the sixty’s and before what he describes was the exception, not the rule. As somebody else wrote it is easy to minimize the feminist movement after they raised our consciousness to the problems women face.

I was surprised to read recently that only a minority of women consider themselves a feminist. I had to do a report years ago on feminism and I was surprised by the various shades of feminism. Unfortunately a certain segment of society has striven to denigrate feminism and the word feminist. But the previous quote illustrates the need for feminism, for why else would we need to be “determined to raise boys to respect women.” Why would we need to teach our boys to respect woman if all facets of our culture truly accepted women as equals? The above quote illustrates the continuing need of the feminist movement. As long as some can rationalize certain statistics as acceptable or we allow institutionalized sexism and abuse we have a problem.

Posted by: Cube at October 7, 2007 2:03 PM
Comment #235529

Sorry to interrupt in this thread, but thought those who know him would like to see why we haven’t seen anything of AP for a while:

Heart Attack-ack-ack
Monday, 1 October 2007 3:40 P GMT-08
Well, I haven’t posted much since early last month becase I had a heart attack. I got lucky and went down while out with my family near a hotel that was hosting a cardiologists convention. So, now I’m back. Sort of. I’ll continue posting, but it won’t be as often for a while. Later!

Here is his blogsite add. if anyone wants to wish him well….

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at October 7, 2007 5:18 PM
Comment #235540

nyc musician raises funds and awareness for fallen soldiers and their families-please send your stories in-tshirts are now available on and so is the first song…20 percent goes to a trauma fund for soldiers and families!!!! press release follows:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE For more information, contact: BIOYA Entertainment 632 East 11th Street Suite #26 New York, NY 10009 Phone: Rebecca Greenberg 646-637-8584 Ben Warren 646-924-8488 Email: New York City, NY – September 19, 2007-BEN WARREN, NYC MUSICIAN, RECORDS SONGS ABOUT SOLDIERS WHO HAVE FALLEN IN IRAQ. Every two weeks, starting October 2, 2007, Warren will compose a song from information provided by the friends and families of the soldiers. Warren will record a song every two weeks from varying regions of the United States, starting with the Midwest. He will also record a song about active soldiers and also one about a veteran of war. Warren wants to give a voice to our fallen soldiers in a way that will bring long-term awareness to the overall effects of war. He feels the ones who have sacrificed for our country need a vehicle to share their experiences and should be focused on. “As our politicians argue over the best way to (effectively) end this war and bring our troops home, I wanted to focus on the toll the war has taken on our soldiers and their families.” Warren said when asked to comment on the political nature of the project. The Midwest song will be released on October 2, 2007. The South region song will be released on October 16, 2007. The active soldiers song will be released on October 30, 2007. The veteran’s song will be released two days after Veterans Day on November 13, 2007. The West coast song will be released on November 27, 2007. The East coast song will be released on December 11, 2007. The final song, in remembrance of the families during the Holidays will be released on December 25, 2007. Besides radio airplay, all songs will be released on Ben Warren’s blog at Ben Warren was a member of well-known NYC group ‘Whats Up’ (with Jason Paige) whose debut album “Stand Up” was produced by legendary Chic bassist Bernard Edwards, as well as a successful solo-artist with albums “Famous”, “Manifest Destiny” and “Dead at Disneyland” With his sophisticated lyrics he has established himself as a respected artist in the alternative pop arena. He garnered national recognition by covering multi-platinum artist Eric B And Rakim’s song “Microphone Fiend” on “Famous.” Ben Warren is an artist of BIOYA Entertainment, an independent label that promotes the careers and longevity of artists who make a difference. To be considered all interested parties should send their information to BIOYA Entertainment in a timely manner. All information, documents, pictures and videos sent should be labeled with what category/region it belongs to. Due to the large amount of material we receive please send photocopies that will not need to be returned in manila envelopes with the name of the region on the front and back of the envelope. For more information, contact: BIOYA Entertainment 632 East 11th St. Suite #26 Tel: Rebecca Greenberg 646-637-8584 Ben Warren 646-924-8488 Email: ###

Posted by: rebecca at October 7, 2007 8:06 PM
Comment #235544

I have no problem with a feminist movement that believes in addressing the real problems of women.

The same family that taught me to respect women also taught me, in the midst of my deeply Christian roots, to respect the religiosity of other faiths, to be facinated with atheists and their ideas, and to see all human beings, child, adult, black, red, yellow, purple, or white as bearing the same investment of love and intent from their Creator. All of those things are connected. Women’s “issues” are not inherently separated from any of those other issues. This is particularly true of women as rearers of children.

For example, the most public faces of the women’s movement appear to attempt to devalue the presence of both male and female parents in a household raising children. If that is what large percentages of women see of “feminism” they could reasonably, given the outcomes of populations of children raised in single-parent households, rebel against that label. If that is not what the movement really believes they have some PR work to do.

The most public faces of the women’s movement appear to disregard the value of unborn human life. If this is what large percentages of women see of the women’s movement they could reasonably, if they held deep convictions on the value of innocent human life, rebel against that label.

There are numerous issues such as these where the most public faces of the women’s movement seem determined to fly in the face of what women throughout the country hold to be important, while still representing themselves as their legitimate voice. It is as though those women were not “real” women! That is an impression of a movement no more respectful than the culture at large- and perhaps less so.

Women need help with a culture that will teach boys that girls are not just sex toys and what responsibility in relationships and in parenting really are. They need the culture to back them up in this issue and hold men responsible so that they will believe a relationship with a woman is consequential.

The legitmate differences between the sexes need to be recognized for what and who they are. Women should not be made to feel guilty for not being men in personality or attitudes or skills.

I know about a dozen female Ph.D.s in several fields. Out in the countryside, though, women need help getting the culture to take them seriously as intellectual agents early in life. Girls (especially minority girls) educated apart from boys in high school years do far better academically. The opportunity to have such an education should be available to girls (and parents) who desire it without the heavy hand of so-called “civil rights activists” intruding.

These are just three ideas. Feel free to add more, then make those truly supportive ideas the core of a real women’s movement in which any woman can feel proud to be a “feminist”.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 7, 2007 9:04 PM
Comment #235547


I don’t know who you were referring to in the comment:

And then we find a comparison that allows us to shuttle aside disturbing truths: well, the incidence of rape in the military is roughly similar to that on college campuses.
, but it is absolutely false.

I posted a link to the CDC that I have copied below-

You’ve got to go down a little but it has stats for the population as a whole, including subsets.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 7, 2007 9:18 PM
Comment #235549


In your document I couldn’t find statistics on sexual assault at college. May be my old eyes. At any rate, I didn’t intend to imply I was referring to an actual factual situation; I merely meant to demonstrate a thought process. Perhaps I didn’t do that well.

Anyway, I wasn’t referring to you.

Posted by: Gerrold at October 7, 2007 9:50 PM
Comment #235551


Should we assume that when people, male and female, get thrown together in a pressure cooker, where they have only themselves to depend on, will react as though they are at home or on a collage campus?
Perhaps I am out of my mind here, but I would think that men and women in a war zone would be drawn together for support, not pushed into a situation where they might abuse each other.

How do we compare the incomparable?
How do we compare life on a collage campus in America, or statistics in a typical American city where life is pretty much stable, to a war zone in Iraq, where everything is in chaos on a daily basis?

Posted by: Rocky at October 7, 2007 10:16 PM
Comment #235557

KansasDem, I didn’t have the opportunity to delve into this topic further to decipher what political affiliation the attorneys handling the cases of these women are. I would hope that whether or not they are Republican or Democrat or Libertarian, even, doesn’t matter. After all, it’s the welfare of the victim that is most important, and the attacker must be brought to justice.


As for your assumption that I’m an “Eisenhower Republican”, I can only say that Ike was a great man and so many POLITICIANS today, from both the left and the right, could learn from him.


Lastly, your disbelief that I’m a Republican astounds me. Is it because I’m not an extremist? Did you know that there many more Republicans who are not? In addition to myself?

I find it hilarious that I’m always challenged on my political affiliation. I’m a Republican. And conservative. I don’t believe in abortion. I don’t believe in the death penalty and I don’t believe that women in the military should have to suffer at the hands of overly masculine men who assume they can do no wrong simply because they are in Iraq fighting a war.

I also believe that the Democrats AND Republicans who voted to send us to war are fully responsible for sending innocent men and women to fight a battle we may never win.

So if that doesn’t answer your question, I’m afraid I don’t know what will.

Posted by: Dana at October 8, 2007 12:45 AM
Comment #235559
I have no problem with a feminist movement that believes in addressing the real problems of women.


Evidently you seem to know what problems the feminist movement should and should not be addressing. By the list of problems you mention, it seems that women shouldn’t be addressing problems that offends your religious upbringing.

Fortunately for women our Constitution was written in a manner as to protect them from such persecution. Hopefully the taint of the far right conservatism that now sits on the bench does not revoke their equality and their right to pursue happiness.

Personally I don’t know what issues women should be pursuing, but I do know that if we start with the premise that we should put bounds on what issues they can pursue. Then we have already defeated the purpose of the feminist movement.

Posted by: Cube at October 8, 2007 2:00 AM
Comment #235563

MST in french is the acronym for “Maladie Sexuellement Transmissible”, aka Sexually Transmitted Decease. Which give me an instant weird feeling when I see the M stands for Military, not my usual french word…

Anyway. So long for the strong moral values that Middle East should have been exposed frontally. Nothing good comes ever out of wars. Unfortunatly, it also true within your own side.
One on four is a terrible rate. Maybe instead of pushing women soldiers to stop their period, men soldiers should be enforced to take libido stopper pills. After all, military is not soft regarding drugs these days. Let’s move farther!

What is the government going to do to help these veterans?

The real question should be what is the government going to do to not have veterans in EVERY generation since last 60 years. Hint: not resorting to war and violence could help, he should try it sometimes.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at October 8, 2007 6:40 AM
Comment #235568

Woman will do just fine so long as she remembers that…

1) God created Man so that Man might fill the Earth and rule over all of earthly creation.

2) God created woman so that Man might have a helper.

3) woman gave man knowlege and is therefor responsible for original sin.

4) A woman’s desire will be for her Husband and He will rule over you.

The feminist movement is deceiving woman because it refuses to recognize these basic truths.

Posted by: jlw at October 8, 2007 9:29 AM
Comment #235569

It seems just as likely I have offended YOUR “religious convictions”. One of the things protestant theology tries hard to train people in is the recognition of idolatry, the replacement of human constructs for God. A lot of people, imagining they have no “religion”, are blinded to the dogma of their beliefs. Thus they are unaware of the religious intolerance they exhibit to others.
While I am sure there are areas in which I am unable to recognize my dogmatic assumptions (and, therefore, am in some way bigoted), at least I know from my religious training to be aware of, and open to, my human limitations.

So, again, the most public faces of the “women’s movement” appear intolerant of the notion that we support women well by insisting that men- accept women as full intellectual equals, embrace relationships with women as consequential, and be fully supportive of women in the raising of their children.

The most public faces of the “women’s” movement appear intolerant of women insisting on the importance of upholding the sacredness of innocent human life.
Perhaps these are religious convictions, but they are convictions I share with a great many WOMEN.

The “women”s” movement so dogmatic they will denigrate what such women really believe in an effort to proffer their own concept of womanhood should, by all means, be called upon to answer for their own religious principles.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 8, 2007 9:34 AM
Comment #235572

You might look this up, too. Each instance in which Jesus raised a male from the dead was to the benefit of women for whom the male was the sole means of support under the onerous Jewish laws of the day. As a matter of fact he often took women’s sides in situations where the status quo is set hard against women.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 8, 2007 9:50 AM
Comment #235586

Lee: I confess that after writing the first three, I looked them up to see if my memory conformed with what was written in the KJV. I feel that it is safe to trust my memory when I say that I agree with what you are saying about the teachings of Jesus. I have much remorse over the fact that much of what we know about Jesus, his life, and his teachings has been lost, compromised and censored.

I think we could learn a lot by comparing the most public face of the “womens movement” to the most public face of the “religious movement”

IMO, the reason many women don’t consider themselves “feminists” is because, while they embrace many of the reactionary elements of the “womens movement” they reject many of the radical elements of the movement. I have confidence in our women and their ability to make their own distinctions. The more that women are empowered, the greater their contribution to our society is.

Posted by: jlw at October 8, 2007 1:13 PM
Comment #235592

Well stated. Controversy sells. The “most public faces” are usually not the best reasoned faces. Within the Christian community what we have a responsibility to recognise is that the very first thing the Bible notes about mankind made in “our image” (Genesis quoting God speaking here) is “Male and Female made he them.” WOMAN is made in God’s image, too.

Christian, Jew, or Muslim, we can’t get out of the first page of our oldest holy book without getting a taste of equality.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 8, 2007 1:49 PM
Comment #235601


I don’t doubt that some of the attorneys representing these victims would be Republican or otherwise.

I was represented by the same law firm for over 30 years and the senior partner was a retired Republican Nebraska State Representative. At least two of the other partners were very active in the local Republican Party. They always served me well.

My point was, and still is, that Congressional Dems have historically been more likely to criticize the military, the DOD, the Pentagon, etc. than have Republicans. Republicans have OTOH been more than willing to label Democrats cowards and/or traitors for pursuing allegations of wrongdoing by ANY member of the military, whether it involves women in the military, or any other aspect of the military (internal or external).

The Eisenhower comment was a compliment. From this and previous posts I believe you truly are a “compassionate” conservative. Sorry, but the Boehner’s, Delay’s, Lott’s, McConnell’s, Frist’s, Santorum’s, etc. have made it hard for me to believe compassion really exists among much of the Republican party anymore.

It’s a bias issue. But it’s based on what I’ve seen and heard.

Posted by: KansasDem at October 8, 2007 3:24 PM
Comment #235603

What should trouble both you and me is the idea that one party is associated with criticism and another with knee-jerk defense. If we begin discussions masked in colors of perceived prejudice we are never really addressing the issues themselves, but our perception, the specter, of our “opponent’s” position.

The partizanship becomes the real issue we discuss, not the problem, in this case military sexual trauma, at hand.

Posted by: Lee Jamison at October 8, 2007 3:35 PM
Comment #235604

Cube said: “Fortunately for women our Constitution was written in a manner as to protect them from such persecution.”

No! It wasn’t! The Constitution was written giving white male land owners the vote and thereby, the power of public policy. Which gave these men dominion over all women. The Constitution clearly intended women to NOT have such power. Thankfully, the women’s suffrage movement through over a century of sacrifice, suffering, and perseverance overcome this shortcoming in our Constitution and our founding father’s limited vision and understanding.

Posted by: David R. Remer at October 8, 2007 3:36 PM
Comment #235606
Woman will do just fine so long as she remembers that…

1) God created Man so that Man might fill the Earth and rule over all of earthly creation.

2) God created woman so that Man might have a helper.

3) woman gave man knowledge and is therefore responsible for original sin.

4) A woman’s desire will be for her Husband and He will rule over you.

The feminist movement is deceiving woman because it refuses to recognize these basic truths.

jlw — you’ve missed one thing. “Wives be subject to your husbands.”

But this does not in NO WAY excuse RAPE and ASSAULT. And men have no right to rule over women. That’s an outdated and outlandish opinion. I’m sad you would even state this publicly.

Posted by: Dana at October 8, 2007 4:26 PM
Comment #235607

KansasDem, I’m afraid you’re remarks are blatantly wrong. You doubt that any of the attorneys are Republican? When did you do your research? How do you know? Are you saying that none of the people investigating MST are conservative or Republican? For real? That’s a mighty bold statement.

Posted by: Dana at October 8, 2007 4:30 PM
Comment #235609

“I don’t doubt that some of the attorneys representing these victims would be Republican or otherwise.”

Read his quote again.

Posted by: Rocky at October 8, 2007 5:13 PM
Comment #235631

I obviously ruffled some feathers. Honestly ……… I’m sorry. Lee is right (no pun intended).

I’ve succeeded only in driving a wedge between those of varying political affiliation rather than looking at a solution. Dana, I aplogize, that’s as far as I can go with that. I already admitted that my initial post was atrocious.

I never meant to indicate that ALL Republicans care less (or more) about certain issues than others. Facts are what they are, and I do find it odd that NO ONE presented evidence of any Republican congressman or POTUS vigorously investigating such misconduct in the military.

But, I say “forget the past”! I do believe that Dana, Lee, myself, and others care about this abuse of women in the military. So I propose that we try and come together on drafting a letter to our individual Representatives and Senators, and all other appropriate elected or appointed individuals to minimize this kind of abuse in the future and to provide proper services for those who have already suffered abuse in the military.

We might even ask the Watchblog site manager/owner if he cares to sign on. I’m 100% go with the idea. I’ll gladly send my email address to anyone that’s serious about doing this. I think it should be kept totally nonpartisan …….. we’d be requesting congressional action, and I’ve found that snail mail is best when addressing an issue not already standing for vote in either the House or Senate.

How say you all?

Posted by: KansasDem at October 8, 2007 10:03 PM
Comment #235725

Rocky, thank you for pointing out how easy it is to “read what you want to read”. I read his quote correctly the first time and changed one simple word to prove a point. (That word being “any”, rather than “some”.)

Implications and making comments with the intent to make assumptions is what causes such discourse between us.

KansasDem, I know you did not intend to make such a fuss, however, when it comes down to it, that’s what happened.

I appreciate your honesty in the situation. I’m happy to see you support the military and agree that women should not be abused and the attackers should be punished severely.

Posted by: Dana at October 9, 2007 11:29 PM
Comment #235897

At the moment, this seems to be the best place to say this: Today Doris Lessing finally won the Nobel Prize for Literature, and for my part, I’m taking the night off from political chit chat to lose myself in one of her fabulous novels.

Posted by: Gerrold at October 11, 2007 7:28 PM
Comment #236061

As always, I am drawn to your enslightlfulness when you chose to post. I may differ with you in some areas, but usaully I find myself not only in your corner but wishing I had the abilty to write as fluently as you do. I have been following an article regarding “Command Rape” that has recently been published in my hometown newspaper, and it amazes me the number of comments made against the woman involved. One writer actually had the nerve to write

” Well, she should have known what was going to happed when she enlisted. That’s what happens when women join the military. Most of them are whores, sluts or husband hunters. That’s the only reason they join -becaue they want to get….” (fill in the blanks)

I shall refrain from continuing onward with the context because I believe everyone here can figure out where this- ah- person- was going.

Unfortunately, people like him will hinder improvements not only in the mitlary but in our world in general in regards to the male - female relationships.

Posted by: Linda H. at October 13, 2007 5:20 PM
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