To have women serving in infantry, though, could impair the mission-essential tasks of those units. And that’s been proven in study after study, it’s nature, upper body strength, and physical movements, and speed, and endurance, and so forth.
Nature? We look forward to more from Rep. Cotton on the nature of women. We now know his patronizing outlook goes back many years.
TB: Where, oh where, to begin?
Apparently like a typical progressive, Brantley thinks that not only are there no natural, normative gender roles (that's a datum for most progressives), but nature is otiose when it comes to physical attributes as well. Heaven forbid Cotton express what most people have thought until about five minutes ago. Is Cotton wrong that women serving in the front lines of the military could impair a mission-essential task? Apparently it's impossible that this be the case. But progressives don't care whether it could or even would impair such a task; just look in the news. They fall over backwards in embarrassment over the U.S. military might (invoking "colonialism" at every turn, wishing out loud to flee to Enlightment Europe because of U.S.--or pick your favorite Southern state--ignominy), so it's hard to believe that they would not be a little tickled to see it knocked down a peg...or three. Who in her right mind thinks that the push to have women in combat roles is really for the purpose of making the military better at doing what it does--viz., killing people and breaking things? No one, as far as I can tell. No, the push to have women in combat roles is plain and simple the logical conclusion of progressive ideology hell-bent-for-leather on promoting the social engineering of culture with the aim of abolishing the practice and the very idea that there are any traditional (a naughty word) normative gender roles above and beyond whatever progressive social constructions are deemed to be fitting. The goal: normative gender androgyny (at least for men; women have a right to do whatever they want with their bodies).
And, sorry, ladies, I don't mean to break the hearts of you dying to die on the front lines, but here is a fact: men (men, not emasculated, genderless males) prefer to kill other men with other men. Sorry. If you privately ask most soldiers on the front lines, they'd rather sleep in foxholes with other like-minded men when their goal is to fulfill their role as combatants. (Of course, some women feel similarly).
As far as the physical aspects go, of course some women are stronger and more athletic than some men, one particular female in my platoon is favorably brought to mind. (Though perhaps this is lost on Brantley--no doubt a student of the Word--who invokes silly St. Peter's misogynist musings in the title of his piece.) But that's largely beside the point. Most men will also fail the physical tests demanded for combat duty in our voluntary military. At peak performance, I was far stronger and more athletic than most men (in general and in the military). Nonetheless, I would have never been physically able (e.g.) to be in the Special Forces, the Navy Seals, or Special Ops. That is, unless the standards are lowered which they started to be in many military units even before I joined the Army. (The promise is that they won't, but they have and will). In Basic Training, before I even joined in the '90's, the physical standards were lowered to accommodate women--as well, while I was in. But physical standards aside, most men prefer to fight alongside men for women and children, not with them. What military advantage is there for forcing them to fight alongside women they would rather be fighting for? There isn't any. The only "advantage" is political. [Aside: In extraordinary circumstances, I'd have no problem with women in combat roles--if they are needed. But there is absolutely no evidence that women are needed in combat roles in the U.S. military to fulfill the primary military mission at this time.]
Men are simple creatures. It doesn't take much to please us. The problem is women. How does an utterly simple creature understand an infinitely complex one? Since this creature realizes he is even simpler than most men, I knew only women could help me understand, well, women.
My sample is admittedly small and perhaps unrepresentative. [Unlike Brantley, very measured] If it is representative—I tend to think it is—then maybe men can unlock the secret to a woman's heart and soul. Maybe the key is nothing more than a lifetime of love and devotion, of selflessness and sacrifice. [How dare he think that men could play a role in unlocking the desires of a woman's heart, by love, selflessness, and sacrifice! How dare he!]
Yet that is a lot to ask of a man: Talk to a psychologist, a sociobiologist or a mother and you learn that men are naturally restless and rowdy, maybe even a little incorrigible. [More pejorative talk about men.] Throughout time, though, women and social institutions have conspired to break man's unruliness. In the past few decades, however, they have largely abandoned that noble and necessary project. [More pejorative talk about men. Summary: Men need women, and women have traditionally played a role in helping men to be responsible men, through marriage, family stability, etc.]
Feminists who allegedly speak for women should attack divorce, not its effects. If men have easy access to divorce, many will choose it thoughtlessly. They may not gain true happiness with their new trophy wives, but they certainly will not slide into the material indigence and emotional misery that awaits most divorced women [and men!]. If restrained, however, men can fulfill women's deepest hopes. They can learn that personal happiness comes from the desire to devote and sacrifice oneself to one's beloved.
A few men can see this by themselves, and women are quite lucky to hook them. Ordinary women must not only defend these men against feminism, but also demand that all other men accept the lifelong nature of marriage. If not, one-half of all women who marry see their "greatest fear" come true. If so, they can have their "deepest hopes" fulfilled.
Only Tom Cotton could actually believe that a woman's entire hopes and dreams are wrapped up in a man.
TB: There's the semantic distortion, again. Did Cotton say "entire?" I don't see that word anywhere in the quotation above, nor does anything Cotton says suggest it. Cotton is merely pointing to the fact that most women desire to be in a lifelong, loving, till-death-do-us-part, relationship with a man, and that divorce laws (again, I assume he has this in mind but am only reading what Brantley has quoted) make it easier for men not to live up to their end of the bargain. For shame, Tom Cotton, for shame.
Max Brantley has now earned himself his very own imprimatur Tullius Est subject label. The progressive animal is a curious species inviting industrious investigation, but to investigate the species one needs a specimen (even better, in its native habitat). One can hardly do better than Mr. Brantley.