Earlier this week, Republican candidate Rick Santorum said that women shouldn’t serve in combat, because “that could be a very compromising situation, where people naturally may do things that may not be in the interest of the mission because of other types of emotions that are involved.”
Oh. Well that’s much better. After all, men are naturally domineering and inherently feel the need to protect women, right?
Wrong. Way, way wrong.
First, serving in combat is a huge factor for advancement in the military, so women being unable to serve in combat limits their opportunities for advancement.
Moreover, though, Santorum disrespected all the women who have served and are serving in our armed forces today. Aside from essentially telling women in the military that their emotions harm their ability to serve, and then telling them that their male comrades have no respect for them, he pretty much ignored the sacrifice of the more than 140 women who gave their lives in Afghanistan and Iraq.
It shouldn’t come as a shock, of course, that Rick Santorum never served in the military. He served on the Senate Committee on Armed Services, which, according to their website, is responsible for “comprehensive study and review of matters relating to the common defense policy of the United States.” But did he ever experience combat or serve on the military at all? Nope. He didn’t.
He’s also never been a woman. Maybe his comments aren’t so shocking after all.
Now, disregarding Santorum’s plans for the economy, we’d hesitate to support him, because electing people with ideas like these about women can be a social step backwards, which is the last thing we need in a society that’s already very turned around when it comes to women.
What do you think?
(link to full article, courtesy of Katherine Q. Seelye here: http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/10/santorum-clarifies-remarks-on-women-in-combat/)