Emotional “feminists” slam Santorum over misconstrued “emotions in combat” comments

I’m not on Team Santo but the uproar on Rick Santorum’s recent remarks on his opinion on women serving on the frontline is both ridiculous and typical of The Usual Suspects — but I repeat myself. Via ABC News (hat tip):

Rick Santorum raised some eyebrows by saying women should not be in combat because of the “the types of emotions involved.” Now, Santorum says, he is also concerned about “physical strength and capability” of women in combat situations.

First, on those “emotions,” Santorum says he was not talking about the emotions of women.

“I was talking about men’s emotional issues; not women,” Santorum told ABC News. “I mean, there’s a lot of issues. That’s just one of them.”

What emotional issues? Santorum says he believes that the men serving with women would put the protection of women in their unit above the overall the mission.

“So my concern is being in combat in that situation instead of being focused on the mission, they may be more concerned with protecting someone who may be in a vulnerable position, a woman in a vulnerable position,” Santorum said.

But Santorum says he is concerned about more than just the “emotional issues.”

“You throw on top of that just simply physical strength and capability and you may be out there on a mission where it’s you and a woman and if you’re injured, the ability to transport that person back. And you know, there’s just, there are physical limitations,” Santorum said.

Santorum is 100% correct here, IMO.  Not so, say liberal “feminists.” Bring on the fauxtrage! “Maya” at Feministing:

Pro tip: If you bring up “emotions” when defending your discriminatory views, it will be an immediate red flag that you are a sexist asshat. (Seriously, the only thing worse might be talking about that weird thing where we bleed every month.) This is particularly true when you are discussing women and men who regularly face extreme mental and physical challenges you could only dream of.

Pro tip: If you’re going to go and blast a man for allegedly being a “sexist asshat” because of comments you misconstrued to mean ‘women are prone to emotional reactionaryism”, you probably shouldn’t go about inadvertently proving their (alleged) point by being an … emotionally reactionary woman. Duh.

And speaking of, we have our next emotionally reactionary feminist – Tina Dupuy from Crooks and Liars:

“Other types of emotions?” That must be his Low T talking. Those old guys get so cranky when it’s “that time of life.”

In Santorum’s 2005 book, “It Takes a Family” he famously came out against women working outside of the home. He wrote, “It provides a convenient rationalization for pursuing a gratifying career outside the home.” Yes, he blamed radical feminism. And he quickly lost his senate seat by 17 points.

So, keep talking Rick. You’re sure to win the primary against Herbert Hoover who’s looking more progressive and forward thinking every time you open your mouth.

Sigh. Unfortunately, Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin, whose volume work I respect but who has made no secret recently of the fact that she is firmly in the Romney camp, goes off on a similar tangent with misconstruing Santorum’s women in combat remarks plus some comments he made in his 2005 book:

Yikes. Santorum might want to rethink that and figure out a way to walk back some of that. With women making up almost half the workforce (and now out-numbering men among workers with at least a bachelor’s degree), Santorum’s remarks sound badly off-key. Perhaps he’ll walk back his comments on CNN and explain he’s rethought what he wrote in his book. In such matters, the sooner he does that, the better.

Why should he say he has “rethought what he wrote in his book” if he really believes it? Not only that, but Santorum’s book comments, unsurprisingly, have been taken out of context – as Ann Althouse explains here (bolded emphasis added by me):

Rubin quotes something Santorum said in 2005 the crux of which is: “The radical feminists succeeded in undermining the traditional family and convincing women that professional accomplishments are the key to happiness.” Rubin exclaims “Yikes” and pronounces the statement “badly off-key.” Is Rubin succumbing to the kind of emotional reasoning that is so typical of… journalists?

Feminism succeeded dramatically in making women feel that life outside of the workplace is stultifying. (Read “The Feminine Mystique,” the 1963 rant about how horrifyingly small life is for a homemaker.) Here’s the book Santorum was promoting when he called the “radical” feminists to account: “It Takes a Family: Conservatism and the Common Good.” I’m going to read it, as I’ve been reading “The Feminine Mystique” lately, and it’s worth understanding what happened in American culture. You can care about equality without jumping to the conclusion that everyone needs a job! What’s so wonderful about a job? If 2 adults can found the economic and emotional unit we call the family, they are most free if they realize that there are many different ways to structure their lives and find happiness together.

I read Santorum’s 2005 quote as saying no more than that: You don’t need to buy into dogma about “professional accomplishments” as “the key to happiness.” What’s “yikes”-worthy about that? Is it that women will flip out if you say anything that even sounds like you’d deny them full access to the workplace? Ironically, that thought is the stereotype that women are emotional to the point of irrationality.

Bingo.

Later in her piece, Althouse references the relevant passage from Santorum’s book and responds:

Notice the attention to equality. He refers to the traditional role of mothers in the home, but he also acknowledges that fathers may perform this role too and that both deserve respect and encouragement.

SHOCKING.  How horrible!  Equality when it comes to BOTH sexes in the family, and a call for rad-fems to respect not just moms who work outside the home but also those who have the demanding job of being a stay at home mother.  I remember distinctly back in my feminist days the ridicule my fellow feminist friends subjected stay at home moms to in the course of discussion on the issue – and the anti-SAHM bigotry is alive and well still today.  Santorum clearly called for an equality of sorts when it came to how feminists view career moms versus stay at home moms.  This  is what Rubin thinks Santorum should “rethink”, and what the emotionally reactionary feminists at Crooks and Liars & Feministing (among other popular left wing hangouts) believe makes Santorum a “sexist”?  Santorum’s book remarks are some of the same types of remarks conservative women not blinded by the tired “feminist” dogma of days gone by have been saying for decades, but because they were also made by a man – a staunchly conservative one at that – they’re deserving of special “outrage” by women who are too heavily invested (socially, financially, and politically) in making women out to be perpetual victims of our “patriarchal society” than to actually look at the deeper contextual meaning of what thoughtful men have to say on the subject.

Kinda shows just who the real “sexists” are here, doesn’t it?  l-)

Related: Tony Campbell at the Moderate Voice explains in an, ahem, “non-sexist” way, Santorum’s argument against women serving on the frontlines (bolded emphasis added by him):

Simply put – Rick Santorum may feel that men may not be able to handle the emotional strain of seeing women being mortally wounded in combat.

As men, we are hard wired to protect women from harm’s way. As an Army Chaplain, I have had to counsel men who have seen their comrades die on the field of battle. I can not imagine the added psychological pain of seeing a woman killed in such a fashion when actions could have been taken to save her life. I believe it is these “other types of emotions” that Santorum may be talking about.

That is the point Santorum is trying to make – would men jeopardize the military mission in order to save the life of a female soldier? Which is more important – a life of a female soldier or the success of the mission? Men have come to accept the cost of human life (some better than others) when that soldier is a fellow male; the historic ideal of chivalry would be put to the ultimate test if women were to serve as combat soldiers.

Not only that, but what about other situations not related to wounded in action or KIA? There’s the very real possibility women would be more prone to being taken as a prisoner of war and subjected to the tortures that men are – and worse. We’ve seen that with women in non-frontline roles already.  To complicate matters, what if the woman is a mother … or expecting, and those serving alongside her know it? What if she’s the wife/sister/girlfriend of another in the military?  As Campbell said above, men are (fortunately) hardwired to protect women at all costs and that will not change when/if they are ever serving side by side on the frontlines, and that DOES have the potential of endangering the mission. It’s not saying that women are “incapable” of being a good soldier on the ground or anything of the sort, even though there are unquestionable physical strength differences also at play which Santorum referenced somewhat in his remarks.

These ARE the emotional conflicts that men would face when serving their country on the battlefield if they were next to a woman.   I could go on and on about this issue but instead of boring you with several pages of “emotional” blather (wink!), I’d like to hear your thoughts on the subject of women serving on the frontlines and whether or not you think it’s a good idea.

The floor is yours, my dear readers.

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