According to a quote from David Edwards at Raw Story, General Jerry Boykin thinks women are and would continue to be great combat soldiers. But men still shouldn't have to serve with them. Because tampons? Let's take a look.
During a Sunday interview on Fox News, host Chris Wallace asked retired Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin why he disagreed with the Pentagon’s decision to remove the ban on women in combat.
“You need to frame this thing correctly,” Boykin explained. “It’s not an issue of women in combat. Women are in combat already and have been in combat since 9/11, and in fact, prior to that.”
“My issue here is mixing the genders in infantry units, armor units and special forces units is not a positive, there are many distractors there, which puts burden on the small-unit combat leaders and actually creates an environment — because of their living conditions — that is not conducive to readiness.”
Boykin agreed that “some women can meet the standard,” but the issue was about “personal hygiene.”
“What I’ve raised is the issue of mixing the genders in those combat units, where there is no privacy, where they’re out on extended operations and there’s no opportunity for people to have any privacy whatsoever,” the retired lieutenant general insisted.
“Now, as a man who has been there and as a man who has some experience in those kinds of units, I certainly don’t want to be in that environment with a female because it’s degrading and humiliating enough to do your personal hygiene and the other normal functions among your teammates,” Boykin opined.
Source: Raw Story
Ok, so no doubt "some women" can meet the standard. But not all, which is fine, because not all men can meet the standard either.
So meeting the standard isn't the problem.
And I don't even think he's using "personal hygiene" as the usual euphemism for pads, tampons, or other menstrual products, so I don't think he's got the stereotypical macho "girl cooties" problem.
So it's not a matter of Newt Gingrich style mythology of keeping women out of combat because "females have biological problems staying in a ditch for 30 days because they get infections, and they don't have upper body strength."
Instead look at his "framing" again:
I certainly don’t want to be in that environment with a female because it’s degrading and humiliating enough to do your personal hygiene and the other normal functions among your teammates.
Let's go one step further and overlook that bit where he differentiates men as "teammates" and women as "females" and get to the very heart of what he seems to see as the real problem: the degradation and humiliation of, what? Men in combat having to "go poopie" around "females?
When are we going to get it through their thick skills that actual non-stereotypical men can handle women seeing their peepees in non-sexual situations, just like women can handle men seeing theirs? I mean, sure, it's not fun, and it's sure not interesting to see your teammates of any body type attending to their bodily functions. But assuming you're in combat situations together, as Boykin acknowledges women and men have already been for at least 10 years now, you're going to see dramatically more traumatic things happen to your teammates and possibly to yourself than little bits of poop, pee, blood, or toilet paper here and there.
And even if you can't pull up your big-boy pants and deal with it there's no reason to penalize someone else just because you lack the trainability, resilience, or maturity to deal with it.