Right Hooks

Army Ranger Social Experiment Fails

Nate Jackson · Jun. 5, 2015

The Pentagon bowed to political pressure earlier this year and allowed women to participate in Army Ranger school beginning in April. It didn’t end well. Of the 19 who began the course, 11 didn’t make it a full week. Five more failed further in, and three have been allowed to begin the course again. In other words, biology has proved insurmountable in a course so grueling that even half the men who attempt it fail. Two years ago, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey wondered, “[I]f we do decide that a particular standard is so high that a woman couldn’t make it, the burden is now on the service to come back and explain to the secretary, why is it that high? Does it really have to be that high?” The short answer is, yes, because our troops’ lives depend on the capability of their fellow soldiers. As our own Charles Paige wrote in April, “Over time, technology and physiology may evolve to the point that females can meet the same standards as their male counterparts. Until then, however, we don’t recommend placing this military branch and potentially the nation at great risk in a misguided attempt to make a very small percentage of a certain demographic feel better about themselves.”

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