How will progressives get out of this corner they’ve painted themselves into?
Despite studies that clearly demonstrate that women underperform and cause their entire unit to underperform in combat training, the left still seems enamored of the idea that women should be forced upon the military in these combat positions. Indeed, now all branches of the military, including special ops, are required to accept women.
The next obvious step is selective service. If men are required by federal law to register for selective service at age eighteen, why not all women? This is going to be a problem for the femisogynist left who really only wanted that whole equality thing to go so far. Now, they are faced with the logical consequences of their politically correct nonsense.
Army and Marine Corps chiefs have already stated that it’s time to register women for selective service, so this opens a new can of worms for the progressive left. While I couldn’t find push back from progressives yet, it will come. Now, though, they are focusing on Ted Cruz who rightly argues that it is “nuts” to draft women into the military because this now includes combat positions.
Ted Cruz said Sunday a proposal to include women in the Selective Service registration was a product of out of control political correctness and warned against putting a woman soldier near a dangerous “psychopath” in a combat situation.
Mr. Cruz’s remark sets him in opposition to rivals Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush and Chris Christie, all of whom in Saturday night’s debate announced support for registering women in the Selective Service system in case a military draft is ever reinstated.
“As I was sitting there listening to that conversation, my reaction was, ‘Are you guys nuts?’” Mr. Cruz told a town hall audience here on Sunday. “We have had enough with political correctness, especially in the military. Political correctness is dangerous, and the idea that we would draft our daughters to forcibly bring them into the military and put them in combat, I think is wrong. It is immoral and if I am president, we ain’t doing it.”
This tied the progressive left in knots because they do not want any woman to be drafted (they don’t even want men to be), so they had to find another angle of attack against Cruz’s eminently sensible observation.
The progressive site Slate published an article about this as a new “wedge” issue, as indeed it is (but the wedge may well be driven not on the right but on the left).
It’s not often that you get to see a new wedge issue in the process of being formed. So it’s worth paying attention to how it’s done. First, notice the delay between the debate and the attack. In Peterborough, Cruz said he thought that what Rubio, Bush, and Christie had said in the debate was nutty but that at the time, he “didn’t have an opportunity to respond.”
Sure, Rubio, Bush, and Christie all support the plan to draft women into combat positions, but that’s to be expected from them. Poll readers who put their moistened fingers to the wind, they figured that the politically correct response was the right one.
Slate goes on to cite a variety of polls and concludes:
Why did the Mason-Dixon poll find stronger Republican opposition to female conscription than the Quinnipiac poll did? Probably because Mason-Dixon included the word combat. The questionnaire said: “The Defense Secretary recently lifted the ban on women participating in combat. In light of this, if a U.S. military draft becomes necessary again, do you feel women should or should not be included?” The triple combination of women, combat, and conscription—not just women in voluntary combat, or women in the draft—caused a majority of Republicans to draw a line against equal treatment.
That’s why Rubio, Bush, and Christie didn’t put those three factors together—and why Cruz did. Rubio said the Selective Service should be “opened up” to women. Bush said women should “have the right” to serve in combat. Christie said women should be allowed to pursue any role they “aspire to.” Cruz, by contrast, emphasized that conscription was coercive and would kill women, not empower them. He distinguished equality for his daughters—the freedom to pursue “anything in their heart’s desire”—from the notion that “their government would forcibly put them in a foxhole with a 220-pound psychopath.”
Here, the attempt is to discredit Cruz by implying that he sees our own troops as “psychopaths” and threats to female combatants. That’s not what he said or what he meant, but the problem for the progressive left is that they don’t want women conscripted, either. They actually agree with Cruz that the idea is “nuts” . . . but for different reasons.
Here is Cruz’s statement about this issue:
It was striking that three different people on that [debate] stage came out in support of drafting women into combat in the military. And I have to admit as I was sitting there listening to that conversation, my reaction was “Are you guys nuts?” Listen, we have had enough with political correctness, especially in the military. Political correctness is dangerous. And the idea that we would draft our daughters to forcibly bring them into the military and put them in close combat, I think is wrong. it is immoral and if I’m president, we ain’t doing it.
I’m the father of two little girls, I love those girls with all of my heart, they are capable of doing anything in their heart’s desire, but the idea that their government would forcibly put them in a foxhole with a 220 pound psychopath trying to kill them doesn’t make any sense at all. It is yet one more sign of this politically correct world, where we forget common sense. We got to get back to common sense, we’ve got to get back to a president that says, “No, that doesn’t make any sense.” [emphasis mine]
To me, the most interesting part of this debate is not that Cruz makes perfect sense and that his position may be politically incorrect but that the progressive left will have to find a way to weasel out of this corner into which they’ve painted themselves. That should be fun to watch.