A Fox News article today focuses on the perceived ‘epidemic’ of sexual assaults in all branches of the armed services.
The Senate Armed Services Committee hearing Tuesday brought in the top brass from each of the armed services for a grilling about the possible reasons behind the rash of sexual assaults and their plans for solving the problem; ironically it was one of their own senators who was the first one placed over the proverbial barrel, not one of the brass. Senator Saxby Chambliss actually had the temerity to state that the reason for the rash of sexual assaults might just be (in his words):
“The young folks that are coming into each of your services are anywhere from 17 to 22, or 23. Gee whiz, the level — the hormone level created by nature sets in place the possibility for these types of things to occur.”
Yes! The senior senator from Georgia actually said “gee wiz;” and yes he is probably at least 90% correct in his assessment but he was attacked from both sides of the aisle for saying it . . . that’s not what the publicity hounds on the Senate Committee wanted to hear. The committee didn’t assemble to hear reason or logic, they wanted to hear solutions, and rightly so. They also wanted to rip some “brass” off the top brass to satisfy ‘blood-thirsty’ female voters.
If Sen. Chambliss had thought to add: “but that’s no excuse for rape” he could be sitting peacefully sipping Southern Comfort tonight instead of trying to justify his apparent justification of rape. When even Debbie Wasserman Schultz is more correct on any subject than you are, you know you’re in a very tenuous position.
The military is, and always has been, a reflection of society in general. Our society today has become more sexualized and less respectful of authority — in two words, ‘less civilized.’ In what has been referred to as the “good old days” people had more respect for authority and for each other because the rules were, for the most part, logical, rational and fairly enforced. Today however, logic and rationality have been replaced by “zero tolerance” which is anything but logical or rational. Zero tolerance was created by lazy school administrators and was soon adopted by lazy business administrators. Nonsensical rules turn the ‘fear of breaking’ rules into the ‘challenge of breaking rules without getting caught.’
It is those teenagers and young adults who have developed an indifferent attitude toward rules who are going into the military and not adapting to the strict, respectful, no nonsense culture required for military discipline.
I can’t imagine a scenario where society will ever return to the old attitudes about the sanctity of rules but we can go forward! Go forward into a culture where rules are tempered with common sense and, for that reason, breaking them is not easily justified by potential rule breakers.
Perhaps more classroom time is needed in military boot camp, to reeducate the kids that our society has failed.