“So they stood an’ was still to the Birken’ead drill, soldier an’ sailor too!”
Rudyard Kipling penned these words in honor of the soldiers aboard the Birkenhead (a transport ship) who gave their lives for women and children. In 1852, the Birkenhead struck the rocks off of Danger Point while sailing around the Cape of Good Hope. After the women and children were safely put in life boats, Lieutenant Colonel Seton, commanded the men to stand fast and in formation so that they would not endanger the boats close by. They held rank and went down with the ship into waters infested by Great White sharks. 193 out of 631 died but not one woman or child.
The idea of “women and children first,” seems distant and anachronistic as we look at the events in Afghanistan and Iraq. Perhaps seeing one of our precious ladies being carted in a stretcher might cause some stir of response from the right. Our hearts wrenched as we saw Pfc. Jessica Lynch rescued by daring soldiers freeing her from an Iraqi hospital. While the liberal media largely ignored Private Lynch’s gender, a few brave conservatives let out a cry. However, one important voice aside from a few courageous apologists and theologians has been largely silent. Roughly, 35 women have lost their lives in Iraq, and the Church has been M.I.A in the debate.
The question is not whether women are valiant enough or able enough to serve in combat because they are and may very well be. The question is whether they should be even fighting in the first place. Earlier in May 2005, Rep. John McHugh, R- NY sponsored an amendment to the House defense spending bill. It would have put into law a Pentagon policy from 1994 that prohibits female troops in all four service branches from serving in units below brigade level whose primary mission is direct ground combat, and would have required defense officials to get congressional approval when opening up positions to women. After House Democrats and some Republicans protested, the amendment failed. This points to a greater failure, the failure of male leadership in our society.
We can go into a detailed discussion about how men have greater physical strength, ability to lift heavy loads, and have a greater body mass index. We can talk about logistical problems, influences on recruiting, problems with sexual harassment, and cohabitation (what happens when you put hundreds of virile men together with women?) However, if we try and argue from a practical viewpoint we will have already lost the battle. We must look to God’s infallible Word as our guide for these important decisions.
Isaiah 3:12 describes a nation under judgment, “Youths oppress my people, women rule over them. O my people, your guides lead you astray; they turn you from the path.” In the book of Judges a woman dropped a millstone on Abimelech’s head, and he called his armor bearer and said, “Draw your sword and kill me, so that they can’t say, ‘a woman killed him.’” (Judges 9:54) More passages describing judgment on a nation are used in Jeremiah 51:30. “Babylon’s warriors have stopped fighting; they remain in their strongholds. There strength has exhausted; they have become like women.” The Book of Numbers lists the qualifications for military service. The Lord commanded Moses, “Take a census of the whole Israelite community by their clans and families, listing every man by name one by one. You and Aaron are to number by their divisions all the men in Israel twenty years old or more who are able to serve in the army.”(Numbers 1:2-3)
Perhaps the most significant biblical principle is reaffirmed in Ephesians 5:25 referring to Christ (the groom) dying for the bride. The relationship husbands have for their wives is to be one of self-sacrifice, of laying down his life for his wife.
In our “progressive” and “enlightened” society we often scoff at time honored traditions like holding the door for a lady or offering a seat to her. How enlightened are we as a society that is now immortalized by photos of Pfc. Lynndie R. England, shown giving a “thumbs up” while pointing to the genitals of a naked detainee? While this may not rise to the level of torture as the media would claim, we should be outraged that our American women are there in the first place.
We become horrified at pagan nations using women and children as human shields, but we remain silent at the shame of strapping our women with machine guns and battle gear, and sending them off to Baghdad while we play Mr. Mom at home changing diapers. Can we depend on our Congress full of feminized men to do the honorable and right thing and protect our daughters, wives and sisters? Can we depend on a leadership which is more afraid of the politically correct battalion of feminists in the media, than Our Lord and Savior? Our only hope is the Church of Jesus Christ.
Many may remember the bill put forth by Charles Rangel before the 2004 elections. Mr. Rangel said he introduced the bill to make a political point that the military is being stretched too thin under Mr. Bush. It would have required everyone, including women, between the ages of 18 to 26, to serve a period of military service. The forces are strong attempting to put the death blow to patriarchy. Could another terrorist attack be the impetus to reinstating a draft? It won’t be long before a new batch of legislators and lawmakers weaned off of G.I Jane, Will and Grace, and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, come to power and insist on conscription of our women and open sodomy in the military. Either we speak now when we can have an impact or we watch as our daughters spend their summer preparing for basic training instead of prom.
The Church of Jesus Christ must call on the president and our leadership to repent of the abomination of placing our women in combat, and repeal the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy put in place by the Clinton administration and perpetuated by President Bush. We must cry out to the Lord for national repentance, and for the Lord to raise up male leadership. More is at stake than preserving formal traditions like holding the door for our ladies. We are at a war for the very heart and soul of our nation. On our watch not only are men being allowed to marry men but we are on the verge of reversing 2,500 years of cultural history in the West by allowing women in direct combat. Now is not the time for feebleness and frailty. Let us fight valiantly for Christendom. Let us not be like the pagan nations. Let us protect our women and children.
Let us be like our Lord, “The Lord will march out like a mighty man, like a warrior he will stir up his zeal; with a shout he will raise the battle cry and will triumph over his enemies.” (Isaiah 42:13)
Nick Jackson is a physical therapist from Ohio who assists pro-life and pro-family ministries in the Central Ohio area. He is executive director of Reform America, a Christian Activist organization based in Columbus. For more information on Reform America go to www.reformamerica.com You can e-amil Mr. Jackson here: email@example.com
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