Women at Ranger School

Discussion in 'Academy/Military News' started by cisco, May 19, 2012.

  1. cisco

    cisco Member

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  2. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    OoohRah! Every Marine a rifleman. Oops, rifle person. And they all earn it.
    "Whatever it takes"?
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2012
  3. BillSL

    BillSL USMA Class of 2016

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    Is all the information on the weaponsman page accurate?

    Well, I understand that the Ranger tab does offer some sort of special credibility (hence military.com states that 90% of senior officers are Rangers), but as far as I understand it is a COMBAT leadership and technique school. How can you guarantee combat success if you are going to take it easy on female Ranger candidates? I don't understand.
     
  4. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    Welcome to the military, son. Think politics and social engineering are bad in the real world? Wait 'til you see the #$@% we pull...
     
  5. pilot2b

    pilot2b Candidate Appointee

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    The Marines have a reputation for fighting this sort of thing (even Thomas Ricks has noted how they train women separately from the men and resist changes). Politics exists in any branch of the military, but I am surprised that they're going along with this as well.
     
  6. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/04/marine-women-infantry/

    They don't get a choice.
     
  7. SamAca10

    SamAca10 Ensign - DWO

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    If it happens here at an Academy it doesn't surprise me that it happens in the "real" military.
     
  8. BillSL

    BillSL USMA Class of 2016

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    Haha, well, I'll see it soon :cool:
     
  9. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    Being an extended Ranger course graduate (107 days), my perspective is that it will be very hard to "guarantee" someone graduates. Regardless of the political will, only so much of the existing standards can be modified.

    I don't know how much Ranger course has changed since 1995, but when I attended the course, there were objective and subjective requirements.

    Objective requirements were things like APFT on 17 -21 aga scale, combat water survival test, mountaineering, land navigation, obstacle course ("Darby Queen"), 15 mile road march, and etc.

    Subjective requirements were getting go/no go on "patrols" while holding a leadership position, peer rating, and etc.

    Call me a sexist if you want, but I don't think too many females will pass some of the objective requirements.

    What makes Ranger course challenging is the endurance/physcial requirement - there are some females that can do more push ups, sit ups, and run 2 miles faster, 6 pull ups, or do 15 mile road march faster than me. But meeting all these requirements with no recovery period makes it very physically demanding.

    One of the scariest moments in my life was at the Ranger coure doing a buddy repeal - carrying someone on my back and rappelling. Yes, we did pair up to have someone that is similiar in size, but having someone on your back with only your one arm strength to rappel down a cliff is very scary.
     
  10. GoSox

    GoSox Member

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    I think people are suggesting that they'll either (a) have different objective standards (e.g. time for an obstacle course, number of pullups) for men and women, as they do at the SAs and in service-wide fitness tests; or (b) lower the objective standards for everyone so it makes it more likely that women can meet the standard.

    Personally (and I'm a Marine, not Army, so it's just an opinion), I think the second option would be very controversial and not the right way to go -- do you really want to be seen as "watering down" one of the Armed Services' signature leadership crucibles? I'm sure the first option would be controversial too, but they might be able to make it work as long as they make it proportionally as hard for women (so 50% of reasonably fit women would fail) as it is for men. The really tricky part though would be trying to justify how a proportionally lower objective standard was still high enough to show combat readiness to Ranger School standards.

    The last option would be to keep all the standards the same and realize it will take a top level woman athlete to pass -- I've met a few women, including some on deployment, that I think would have a good shot.

    It'll be interesting to see how it all plays out.
     
  11. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    Yes, it will be interesting to see how this plays out. I think folks that suffered through Ranger course better understands that creating different objective standards between men and women will be very very difficult.

    If I remember correctly, the Darby Queen, Ranger School obstacle course, is not timed, rather it is 15 to 20 obstacles that are go or no go. If you failed to negotiate an obstacle, you got a demerit (minor minus). I can't remember if you failed so many obstacles, you were kicked out (this was in case of Air Assault school, different type of obstacle course, I think no more than 3 failures).

    So how do we set a different objective standard for the obstacle course - women are allowed more demerits? Make the obstacle course a team event?
     
  12. bruno

    bruno Retired Staff Member

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    The essence of Ranger School is equal and shared pain- a 2LT isn't a 2Lt and a PFC isn't a PFC there- they are both just Ranger candidates, every body has the same road march, the same PT test and the same obstacle course and are equally likely to be humping the M60 or the radio in the mountains or Florida. So if they continue in that vein - then it won't affect the value of the tab. It's really one of the last bastions of anti PC- you either get tabbed or don't regardless of who you are. But if in order to get relatively equal rates of graduation they start "gender norming" the course, then I think that they will have destroyed Ranger School- or at least destroyed the value of the tab.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2012

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