Excellent Study Document by Pr. Heath Curtis: “Natural Law and Women in Combat”

July 16th, 2013 Post by

Women in combat is an issue that the Missouri Synod ought to speak on, period. It is a no-brainer. It is one thing to send men into harm’s way to die to protect the nation or a community. To purposefully send women is a shameful and disgusting commentary on the state of our nation.  If you are willing to admit that men are called by God to protect women, and that a man who sends his wife to check downstairs for a burglar is a despicable coward, any further argumentation will be (as it should be) considered approaching the absurd.

However, if you are confused about this issue, if you are stubbornly resisting what every fiber of your being IS telling you, or if you are still searching for that Bible verse that tells us that liberated American women in the 21st century shouldn’t be sent into combat…then please give this a read. The Lord most definitely DOES have an opinion on the matter. And, unless you are particularly adept at fooling yourself, or cowering before the feminists in your own life, you know exactly how bad this move is and why the church ought to call sin, SIN, and abomination, ABOMINATION.

Pr. Heath Curtis’ excellent paper can be found at the below link. It was originally presented at “Male and Female He Created Them: Women in Times of War,” a forum organized by the Center for Lutheran Theology and Public Life (Dr. Uwe Siemon-Netto, Director), at Concordia Seminary– St. Louis, MO March 27, 2008.

“Natural Law and Women in Combat”

For previous posts on this issue, please see:

Great Stuff — Women in Military Combat: A Post-Decision Perspective by Prof. David O. Berger

Women in combat? The Law has been changed – But the original question must still be answered by Rev. William Foy

And the following is an Overture that made it into the Workbook, but has unfortunately been placed into an omnibus resolution. Hopefully, the convention will see the need for the Synod to speak to this important issue in a timely fashion…like next week.

Women in Combat: Overture for the 2013 Synodical Convention


Categories: 2013Convention Tags:




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  1. Robert
    July 16th, 2013 at 21:39 | #1

    Pastor Curtis is excellent, as always.

    Even the CTCR is getting on the natural law bandwagon. See “The Natural Knowledge of God in Christian Confession and Christian Witness,” which includes a fine excursus on natural law, at http://www.lcms.org/ctcr/.

  2. Nicholas
    July 16th, 2013 at 21:44 | #2

    Here is wealth of resources on this subject: http://bible-researcher.com/women/women-in-combat.html

    I especially like what St. John Chrysostom has to say:

    “O ye subverters of all decency, who use men, as if they were women, and lead out women to war, as if they were men! This is the work of the devil, to subvert and confound all things, to overleap the boundaries that have been appointed from the beginning, and remove those which God has set to nature. For God assigned to woman the care of the house only, to man the conduct of public affairs. But you reduce the head to the feet, and raise the feet to the head. You suffer women to bear arms, and are not ashamed.” —John Chrysostom (AD 344-407), Homily on Titus.

  3. Quasicelsus
    July 16th, 2013 at 22:50 | #3

    @Nicholas #2

    I wonder what St. John Chrysostom would have said about women that have jobs, or work in politics.

    Any quotes?

  4. Jeff Stillman
    July 17th, 2013 at 07:02 | #4

    “Our churches teach that lawful civil regulations are good works of God. They teach that IT IS RIGHT FOR CHRISTIANS to hold political office, to serve as judges, to judge matters by imperial laws and other existing laws, to impose just punishments, TO ENGAGE IN JUST WARS, TO SERVE AS SOLDIERS, to make legal contracts, to hold property, to take oaths when required by the magistrates, for a man to take a wife, or a woman to be given in marriage.”
    – The Augsburg Confession, Artticle XVI Civil Government.

    In the above list of good civil works, should the word “Christians” be interpreted as “male Christians”?

    I put the above question on an older thread and never got a response. The participants on that thread seemed to be more fixated on other issues such as women’s biological cycles than with the Augsburg Confession. You can read about it here:

    http://steadfastlutherans.org/?p=26814

  5. Pastor Eric Andersen
    July 17th, 2013 at 08:22 | #5

    @Jeff Stillman #4
    Since AC XVI wasn’t speaking directly to this issue, but was rather concerned with defending the legitimacy of participating in civic affairs as a Christian against the Anabaptists, and also because it would have been unthinkable for a woman to serve in the army at the time when this was written (much as it has been even in our country until recently), there would have been no reason for Melanchthon to have been more explicit in saying “only male Christians could serve as soldiers.” This is also why we don’t have any sustained arguments in the confessions against women’s ordination (though the rite vocatus of article XIV is male)- it wasn’t an issue back then.

  6. Jeff Stillman
    July 17th, 2013 at 09:03 | #6

    I am personally opposed to women in combat, but not necessarily for the reasons that others provide. I provided a link to an older thread for those interested in my past comments on this issue.

    That being said…

    My native language is English, a mongrel language that can be described as “germanic”.

    I have some familiarity with Spanish which is a “romance” (latin derivative) language.

    English does not (usually) assign gender to nouns, whereas Spanish (almost) always does.

    My understanding is that the “original” versions of the Augsburg Confession were written in German and Latin. I admit to being ignorant concerning German and Latin.

    My questions are:

    Q#1: What gender is used for the word “christian” in AC XVI in the original languages? It seems to me that some possibilities might be:

    A) This is a meaninless question because neither language assigns gender to nouns.

    B) Both versions employ gender specific terms.

    C) One is gender specific, and one is not.

    D) Neither is gender specific.

    Q#2: Is the Reader’s Edition (CPH) of the Lutheran Confession which I quoted a faithful rendering of the original German/Latin?

    Q#3: Is AC XVI “historically conditioned” either in whole or in part?

    Q#4: Which things itemized within AC XVI should be open to women and which should be closed?

    One final observation…

    Q#4 was asked on the older thread by other people, albeit expressed in different terms. This question was never answered on that thread. Will someone please answer it for the benefit of all.

  7. Paul of Alexandria
    July 17th, 2013 at 09:41 | #7

    @Quasicelsus #3
    Proverbs 31:10-31
    An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels….She considers a field and buys it; with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard….She makes linen garments and sells them; she delivers sashes to the merchant….

    Acts 16:14
    One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul

    Soldering is a vocation reserved for men. Men are designed for combat, physically and mentally – just ask any 17 year old male. Not that they don’t suffer, of course, but it’s one of the roles of husband and father – to protect your wife and family.

    There are actually several reasons why women in combat is a very bad idea. Much of this was proved a while back by the Israeli army who – at least at the time that I studied the matter – had actually retracted women back from combat positions. Aside from the physical aspects, with combat soldiers having to carry heavy loads (upwards of 150 lbs) in hostile climates:
    * The sexual tendencies of soldiers and sailors are famous through (literally) song and story. If you put men and women together in these conditions, there will be sex. A friend of mine who served recently in the Army in Afghanistan and Iraq said that there are two kinds of women soldiers: those who are trying to get pregnant to get out of combat (an option not open to men, and can the Army enforce contraception or abortion?) and those who were running prostitution rings.
    * The military absolutely cannot afford fraternization between ranks, where a ranking officer gives favors to or demands favors from a subordinate. (This is also a prime argument against homosexuals in the service).
    * The Israelis found that male solders would fight to the death to protect women soldiers, in situations where they might normally pull back and handle the situation differently.
    * Another aspect of this is simply: if women solders are allowed, after the war you now have men trained to allow women to fight and die – and otherwise treat them like they treat other males; and you have women who are trained to kill and otherwise act in a non-nurturing manner. They’re not going to suddenly shrug off their training in civilian life!
    * Finally, the Israelies also found that when a squad or other group commanded by a woman was going up against the Muslims, the enemy would fight to the death rather than surrender to a female – again, in situations where they might normally surrender or at least flee.

  8. July 17th, 2013 at 11:15 | #8

    A friend of mine in college actually did a paper discussing from a biological viewpoint why women should not be in combat.

  9. Jeff Stillman
    July 17th, 2013 at 11:53 | #9

    This is a topic that merits much discussion and debate. The problem with the discussion and debate, as seen from my perspective, is this:

    Problem#1. Classifications of sin, for example:

    A) corporate sin versus personal sin,

    B) sins of commission versus sins of omission.

    Problem#2. Confession of other peoples sins, instead of one’s own, for example:

    A) Feminism,

    B) Liberalism.

    Problem#3. General avoidance of the Lutheran Confessions as a basis for discussion and debate, for example:

    A) AC XVI Civil Government,

    B) Table of duties,

    C) Catechism concerning the eighth commandment.

    The discussion and debate seem to be centered upon the notion that “women in combat” is a CORPORATE sin of COMMISSION that has someone else’s agenda as the root cause.

    Could we not use the Lutheran Confessions to argue that it is also a PERSONAL sin of OMISSION on the part of men who could/should serve but did/will not serve?

    During the American Civil War, a man could buy his way out of military service by paying another man to take his place. Today a man can have a woman take his place, and at no cost!

    Apparently today one does not owe respect to those who serve, nor is one required to assign the “best construct” to their actions and motives.

  10. Paul of Alexandria
    July 17th, 2013 at 12:32 | #10

    @Jeff Stillman #9
    “Could we not use the Lutheran Confessions to argue that it is also a PERSONAL sin of OMISSION on the part of men who could/should serve but did/will not serve?”

    Except that a lack of soldiers isn’t why women are joining the military today. As far as I understand it, they’re joining for reasons of self-fulfillment. The military is recruiting women and homosexuals because the chief (POTUS) is telling them to.

    The fundamental problem, as I see it, is that the concept of vocations, of separate but equally essential roles in society, for men and women is breaking down. Any such concept is dismissed today as demeaning or demanding of subservience.

  11. Lynn
    July 17th, 2013 at 12:39 | #11

    “And, unless you are particularly adept at fooling yourself, or cowering before the feminists in your own life, you know exactly how bad this move is and why the church ought to call sin, SIN, and abomination, ABOMINATION.”

    1. I would like to know when and for how long Pastor Curtis served in the military.
    2. I would like him to come to my place of employment and tell the women veterans that they are an abomination.
    3. Maybe he would like to come to my house and tell my wife she is living in unrepent sin for being a proud military veteran.

  12. Jeff Stillman
    July 17th, 2013 at 13:01 | #12

    @Paul of Alexandria #10

    I am disappointed that you are not able to put a better construct on the motives and actions of the countless women who serve(d) honorably and faithfully in (y)our defense.

    Please refer to Comment#42 at the following link:

    http://steadfastlutherans.org/?p=26814

  13. Paul of Alexandria
    July 17th, 2013 at 14:15 | #13

    @Jeff Stillman #11
    I’m saying nothing about them or their motives. I’m sure that most military women, like most female pastors (pastorixs?) are well intentioned. However, we’re speaking in this forum about the Scriptural rightness of their taking those positions, and I was also speaking to the long-term effects to the military and to the nation of women in combat positions (there’s a reason why God lays down these rules).

  14. Jeff Stillman
    July 17th, 2013 at 15:16 | #14

    @Paul of Alexandria #10

    @Paul of Alexandria #13

    “As far as I understand it, they’re joining for reasons of self-fulfillment.”

    That’s imputation of a motive in my book.

    Why not rather use words such as “duty, honor, country”? Would not that be a “better construct” on their motives and actions?

  15. Jeff Stillman
    July 17th, 2013 at 15:36 | #15

    An important aspect of the Lutheran Confessions is that they speak to issues in both the affirmative and the negative.

    It is not enough to express the negative that “women should/must not …”. One must also express the affirmative that “men should/must …”.

    This affirmative manner of speech is sadly missing from this debate.

    Why is this so?

  16. Paul of Alexandria
    July 17th, 2013 at 15:49 | #16

    @Jeff Stillman #15
    Why is this so?
    Because it’s not really an issue. Like I said, women aren’t volunteering because there aren’t enough men volunteering, they’re doing so for other reasons.

  17. Paul of Alexandria
    July 17th, 2013 at 15:57 | #17

    @Jeff Stillman #14
    I guess that what I’m trying to say is that women aren’t joining for the same reasons that men are, and I don’t understand their motives fully.
    Men generally don’t join the military for “duty, honor, country” (what does an 18 year old know about those things, anyway?). They join to protect their wives, children, and family; they join to be masculine, they join to be able to kick somebody’s butt with really high powered weaponry; they join because it’s a good job. I understand why men want to go and war on an enemy. I don’t understand why women would want to do so.

    But that’s not really the issue. The issue is whether or not women should go into combat, and whether or not we – as the LCMS – should encourage them or oppose them in doing so.

  18. Paul of Alexandria
    July 17th, 2013 at 16:05 | #18

    @Lynn #11
    Strictly speaking, the argument is about women in combat, not just in the military.

    A few questions, if I may:
    * How long was your wife in the military, in what branch and position, and did she see combat?
    * Why did she join? Did she expect to see combat? Or did she join knowing that she would not?
    * What was her experience with other military women?
    * Do you have children, and if so did you have them during or after her military service (I presume, from your phrasing, that she’s no longer in the service).
    * Did she have any problems re-adjusting to a feminine role after service? Assuming that she did and that you have a Lutheran interpretation of marriage with the husband as head of household and the wife as per Molly Hemmingway’s column – http://steadfastlutherans.org/?p=15535. If not, what are your assumptions?

  19. Pr. H.R. Curtis
    July 17th, 2013 at 16:19 | #19

    @Lynn #11
    Sir,

    The words you quote are from Pastor Ramirez, not me or my paper.

    If you read through my paper and wish to respond to or question a specific part, I would be happy to respond.

    I wish you and yours all the best in Christ,
    Rev. H. R. Curtis

  20. #4Kitty
    July 17th, 2013 at 16:40 | #20

    “And, unless you are particularly adept at fooling yourself, or cowering before the feminists in your own life, you know exactly how bad this move is and why the church ought to call sin, SIN, and abomination, ABOMINATION.”

    Should pastors refuse communion to those women who committed this “SIN”/”ABOMINATION”? Or should we merely mark and avoid them?

  21. Nicholas
    July 17th, 2013 at 17:01 | #21

    @#4Kitty #20

    We should excommunicate apostates like yourself who support abortion and homosexuality, and claim that the New Testament books are “outright forgeries”: http://steadfastlutherans.org/?p=27294&cpage=1#comment-808297

  22. #4Kitty
    July 17th, 2013 at 18:00 | #22

    @Nicholas #21
    That would be unfortunate Nicholas. Even before confirmation, the LCMS has been a inexaustable source of entertainment. I love this church!

  23. Nicholas
    July 17th, 2013 at 18:18 | #23

    @#4Kitty #22

    The Church is not a place of entertainment, apostate.

  24. Paul of Alexandria
    July 17th, 2013 at 20:19 | #24

    @Lynn #11
    Also, please differentiate between women serving in non-combatant positions in the military, and those who want to serve in combat.

  25. Ellie
    July 17th, 2013 at 20:54 | #25

    It seems to me we’d do well to understand that women serving specifically in combat is one issue, while women serving generally in the military is another. It’s a shame that at times the language is sloppy enough that these two issues are conflated.

    That said, I’m unsure how seeing women in combat to be “as tragic as a mastectomy” doesn’t seriously objectify women.

  26. Pr. H.R. Curtis
    July 18th, 2013 at 08:17 | #26

    @Ellie #25
    I’m afraid I don’t follow your use of objectify here. I think medically necessary amputation of any sort is tragic preciously because people are subjects, not objects.

    +HRC

  27. Ellie
    July 18th, 2013 at 13:24 | #27

    @Pr. H.R. Curtis #26
    Except you didn’t choose any sort of medically necessary amputation, you chose a mastectomy, and did so in the context of trying to illustrate a representative loss of womanhood. The woman who has had the mastectomy is still every bit a woman, so I’m not exactly sure what your point was, or how it is any different from how so many in the mainstream media choose to depict women.

  28. Rev. H. R. Curtis
    July 18th, 2013 at 15:27 | #28

    @Ellie #27
    A mastectomy is a medically necessary amputation – why else would one occur? And that is Homer’s point in the Iliad (which is the context I was discussing in my paper). The Amazons attacked a physical incarnation of their femininity not because of medical necessity but so that they could wage war like men.

    As a pastor I have had to walk with many parishioners down the hard road of cancer treatment, including many cases of breast cancer and mastectomy. Of course such women remain women – but any woman who has had to undergo such a procedure can speak to the tragedy of such an operation and the feelings of a loss of femininity and the struggle to deal with all that. That is the reality that thousands face – recognizing this as a tragedy is not a slight to women who have suffered, rather it is an affirmation of their struggle and their courage in facing it.

    +HRC

  29. Kathy L. M.
    July 19th, 2013 at 07:19 | #29

    I graduated from the Naval Academy, back in the ’80s, shortly after the military started admitting women to the service academies; afterwards, I spent 5 years as a Marine officer. I agree with Ellie that the issue of women serving in the military (noncombat) should be looked at differently from women serving in combat. I knew I would not serve in combat and never wanted to. I think the issue is both a physical limitation issue and a “what type of society are we if we send women to fight” issue. On both those fronts, I’m against women in combat.

    Having been a leader of male Marines, the question comes up as how I adjust to my wifely, motherly, female role as a Christian. Although people look at me as a leader, I honestly feel convicted to shy away from church leadership roles. I have even, on several occasions, made excuses on why I couldn’t fill-in as lector on a given Sunday. I find that I am more conservative/limiting on women’s role in church, certainly more than most women, but often more than a lot of our men. I think my conservative position is somewhat a result of my military experience.

  30. Jeff Stillman
    July 19th, 2013 at 07:26 | #30

    Some food for thought.

    Example#1: A man neglects his familial civic obligations and they are performed by a woman.

    Example#2: A man neglects his familial spiritual obligations and they are performed by a woman.

    Example#3: A man neglects his state military obligations and they are performed by a woman.

    Question#1: In any of the above examples, may the man use his vocation to justify his inaction?

    Question#2: In any of the above examples, may the woman use her vocation to justify her action?

    Question#3: In any of the above examples, are we (society, church, state) guilty of a corporate sin?

    Question#4: In any of the above examples, is the man guilty of a personal sin of omission?

    Question#5: In any of the above examples, is the woman guilty of a personal sin of commission?

    Question#6: In any of the above examples, does the man have standing to impugn the character, motives, or actions of the woman?

    Question#7: In any of the above examples, is it okay for the church to speak to us corporately, and to the woman as an individual, but not to the man as an individual?

    Now concerning “Women in combat”, where do we draw the line?

    Line#1: Women may not serve in the military.

    Line#2: Women may serve in the military, but not in combat zones.

    Line#3: Women may serve in the military, and in combat zones, but not in combat.

    Line#4: Women may serve in the military, and in combat zones, and in combat, but not in combat arms.

    Line#5: Women may serve in the military, and in combat zones, and in combat, and in combat arms.

    The distinction between “combat” and “combat arms” may be thought of in the following manner. During basic training all soldiers are trained in combat and are expected to perform competently and effectively when the enemy brings the battle to them. Some soldiers receive advanced training in combat arms so that they may competently and effectively bring the battle to the enemy.

    The current ruckus is caused by the state moving the position of the line forward from Line#4 to Line#5.

    Personally, I might like to see the line moved backwards from line#4 if for no other reason than old fashioned chivalry (something which almost everyone accepts, including a great many feminists!).

    The problem, as I see it, is that the inaction of men (not the action of women) makes Line#5 necessary and inevitable.

    Men take note: Your inaction speaks louder than your words!

    Church take note: Your silence towards men speaks louder than your shouts towards women and state!

  31. Pr. H.R. Curtis
    July 19th, 2013 at 08:40 | #31

    @Jeff Stillman #30
    Do you have statistics or statements from government officials that support your contention that women are being used in combat roles because of a lack of male volunteers?

    +HRC

  32. Jeff Stillman
    July 19th, 2013 at 11:01 | #32

    @Pr. H.R. Curtis #31

    Remember the adage: “There are lies, there are damned lies, and there are statistics”.

    Statistical evidence is meaningless unless you first decide where the line should be drawn.

    Suppose the statistics demonstrated that Line#4 is warranted but Line#5 is unwarranted. Is the man of inaction entitled to a clear conscience?

    Let me give you a bit of personal history.

    In 1969 I joined the army agreeing to the following terms in my enlistment contract.
    A) two years active duty,
    B) two years active reserve duty,
    C) two years inactive reserve duty.

    At that time, men where enlisting in the active reserves to avoid the draft to the point that the active reserves were full to overflowing. The result being that I was told to expect the following.
    A) two years active duty
    B) four years inactive reserves.

    (Bit of humor… I joined the army to avoid being drafted into the marines! If you asked General Eisenhower why he joined the army, he would tell you that it was because the navy rejected him. Heaven forbid that any marine would ever give such an answer!)

    In 1970 I was sent to Vietnam. In 1971 I returned from Vietnam and was placed in the inactive reserves as predicted, instead of the active reserves as contracted.

    Somewhere along the way, the lottery system was implemented. Based upon their lottery number, men could estimate their likelihood of being drafted. Those with a low likelihood who would otherwise have enlisted in the active reserves now had no reason to do so. The result being that the active reserves dropped below their required levels. The army then attempted to move me from the inactive reserve to the active reserve.

    Please note the following:
    A) The line was positioned lower than Line#4.
    B) The total time was six years regardless of how it was apportioned.
    C) The pay was stingy. The highest salary that I received was $265/month as an E5 drawing overseas pay and hostile fire pay.
    D) The educational benefits were stingy.
    E) I was (am) treated contemptuously by the country I served.
    F) A doctor at the Veterans Administration says that I am suffering from three maladies presumptively caused by exposure to agent orange, and am at risk for contracting a fourth malady. I have received no compensation or treatment for this (my claim is under consideration). Alan Simpson says that I should receive none because “I probably would have contracted them anyway”.

    Today with no draft of any kind we find we must:
    A) Move the position of the line to Line#4 or higher.
    B) Increase the total time to eight years.
    C) Provide decent pay.
    D) Provide generous educational benefits.
    E) Be respectful of current military personnel.
    F) Okay, okay. My son-in-law (three years in the gulf) is experiencing similar problems with the VA concerning his maladies. Somethings never change.

    And now I am being asked for statistical evidence concerning my contention. Guess what people, some things are self evident.

    We could move the line to a position lower than Line#4, as is my desire, but we (society, church, state, men) do not have the stomach to do so.

  33. Pr. H.R. Curtis
    July 19th, 2013 at 11:07 | #33

    @Jeff Stillman #32
    I guess it is just not self-evident to me: in a society with high unemployment and low prospects for many young men, the military is an attractive career; I certainly know many young men who have made that choice. And I see no evidence whatsoever that there is actually a shortage among *combat troops* that makes filling those ranks with women anywhere near an exigency.

    I’m always willing to be convinced otherwise by evidence – but again, I have not seen any.

    And, as I mention in my paper: this is besides the point we Christians should consider. What does the Word of God say? That’s the only question worth asking – or at the very least the first question that must be answered.

    +HRC

  34. Paul of Alexandria
    July 19th, 2013 at 11:36 | #34

    @Jeff Stillman #32
    an aside: my great-great-whatever grandfather was deafened by serving as a cannoneer in the Civil War. He was still arguing with the VA in the early 1900’s over receiving a disability pension (I have copies of the paperwork). Some things never change.

  35. Jeff Stillman
    July 19th, 2013 at 12:22 | #35

    @Pr. H.R. Curtis #33

    Concerning your comment about “high unemployment and low prospects for many young men”: I agree with you! But I see this as merely a different form of economic oppression than that which existed during the Vietnam war. Back then the economically underprivileged could not afford to attend college (and lets not forget seminary) as a means of avoiding the draft.

    I have taken a stand that the position of the line should be lower than Line#4. I would be satisfied with Line#3. That’s where it seemed to be in my day, but it required the assistance of the draft.

    I have no antagonism toward your paper. I just don’t think it can get us back to Line#3 without a draft. I don’t think that we have the stomach for a draft. So I am reconciled with Line#4 (which can and does allow women in combat).

  36. Jeff Stillman
    July 19th, 2013 at 12:27 | #36

    @Paul of Alexandria #34

    I appreciate you comment!

    Hopefully by now you have noticed that I am not a raving liberal.

  37. Pr. H.R. Curtis
    July 19th, 2013 at 13:10 | #37

    @Jeff Stillman #35
    I would only challenge you to stop making arguments based on practicalities as we can see them from our earthly perspective and start asking about what God’s will is in this matter for our nation and all nations.

    The history of Israel is replete with example of the Israelites doing what seemed best to them from an earthly perspective and ignoring God’s will. That never worked out so well.

    What is better? A “weaker” army/nation that follows God’s Word or a “stronger” army/nation that does not? Ask Moses and Pharaoh for their answers…

    +HRC

  38. Jeff Stillman
    July 19th, 2013 at 16:03 | #38

    Here are some corrections of previous typographical errors:

    1. I fear that Line#4, not Line#5, has become necessary and inevitable.

    2. My highest pay was $365/month, not $265/month.

    3. My son-in-law spent almost three years on deployment. Six months of that was state-side training.

    Also, I agree with Pr. H.R. Curtis in his comment#37 concerning “weaker” versus “stronger”. For that (and other) reasons, I opposed our involvement in the gulf war.

  39. Holger Sonntag
    July 20th, 2013 at 00:00 | #39

    My server settings in Afghanistan prevent me from reading Pr. Curtis’ paper.

    But just reading along in the discussion, my questions are these: The division between “women in combat” and “women in the military” seems to make sense, but when you look at the purpose of the military as a whole, it — as a whole — “protects” our nation and the constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. It’s not just the combat arms in the military that do that. It’s the whole organization — from the male supply clerk issuing out the bullets to the female general telling her soldiers to use them IAW the established rules of engagement.

    Besides, what about female fighter jet pilots? Or female attack helicopter pilots? Or female attack sub commanders? Not exactly your typical grunts. But they can surely wreak a lot of damage on the enemy — probably more the 150lbs-rucking male dude moving through the mountains in this country — this can be very effective when it comes to protecting the country.

    Of course, ultimately this raises the question of female politicians / political leaders, including a female POTUS — the Commander and Protector in Chief. Also, given that all power according to our constitution emanates from “the people” who exercise their sovereignty by voting — what about female voting in the civil arena? Female voting in the church is a touchy subject, so I expect this to be a hot issue too.

    Another point: many police departments in the States have as their motto: “to serve and protect” or something like that. So, if it’s exclusively a male job to protect the family and the community, then female police officers (they carry guns too) should be out of the question for Christians, no?

    Besides, as far as motives for females in the military / in combat. Well, you’d probably have to ask them, but what I’ve heard from serving females: we want to serve in combat roles because we want to get promoted faster. Sounds self-serving, but who doesn’t want to get promoted and get ahead in life quickly? It’s the American way.

    These are important issues. I think we’re at a point in “social development” where we should realize that answers like “well, I like how it was 20, 40 years ago” simply won’t do anymore. Today’s “issues” have their origins decades ago.

    Therefore, more radical questions need to be asked, and answered, based on God’s Word. If Pr. Curtis’ paper does that, right on!

  40. Holger Sonntag
    July 20th, 2013 at 07:15 | #40

    Paul of Alexandria :
    The sexual tendencies of soldiers and sailors are famous through (literally) song and story. If you put men and women together in these conditions, there will be sex. A friend of mine who served recently in the Army in Afghanistan and Iraq said that there are two kinds of women soldiers: those who are trying to get pregnant to get out of combat (an option not open to men, and can the Army enforce contraception or abortion?) and those who were running prostitution rings.

    That’s pretty broad-brush. I can’t confirm that based on my experiences.

    It also betrays a pretty negative picture of women serving in the military as basically being a bunch of whores and wimps.

    I don’t think that such anecdotal “opinions” of friends in the military are really helpful for the discussion at hand.

  41. Paul of Alexandria
    July 20th, 2013 at 10:08 | #41

    @Holger Sonntag #40
    This was directed at women serving in the field in Afghanistan and Iraq, not women in the military in general. As for being anecdotal, he’s been over there quite a bit and seen this first-hand. Of course not all women behave this way, but enough do.

    You might also want to research the problems that the Navy has with women sailors getting pregnant. It’s more the rule than the exception.

  42. Holger Sonntag
    July 20th, 2013 at 22:51 | #42

    @Paul of Alexandria #41
    Well, I’m over here right now (also not for the first time). And I haven’t seen it at all. So we’ll have to leave it at that, I guess.

  43. July 21st, 2013 at 07:00 | #43

    Speaking purely from a secular framework, no “Equal Rights” parades for drafting women illustrates that radical feminists don’t want equal rights. They want more.

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