Last week, the Marine Corps announced that it would open its Infantry Officer Course to women on an exploratory basis as part of a deliberative effort to determine how/if women can be effectively integrated into full combat roles and occupational specialties. Given that the Corps is developing “’gender neutral’ physical fitness tests” in conjunction with this effort – an apparent correction to a long-standing contradiction of basic equal opportunity objectives espoused by the greater government – this is certainly a step in the right direction.
Such a revision to policy has potentially significant ramifications beyond the immediately obvious as well. I have always posited that women are unqualified for the office of the President of the United States. This is not because of any superficial difference between or assumed general inferiority of women to men in relation to carrying out the duties of the office competently, however. Rather, this is because it is ethically inappropriate for anyone to assume the role and duties of Commander-In-Chief – among these, decisions that sometimes necessarily send men and women to grievous injuries or their deaths – while simultaneously being legally ineligible to serve in that same capacity. It is an understood tenet of basic leadership to ask no one to do something that you are unwilling and/or unable to do yourself.
As an extension of this principle, I also find non-veterans unqualified for the presidency on a personal level but that is a slight digression from the main point. If current law is changed as a consequence of this program, provided that men and women are held to the same physical and psychological standards, this would catalyze a huge leap toward actual accomplishment of the equal opportunity environment that is so often preached but is so rarely realized under current policies.