Yes, it’s true that that the average woman will have trouble lifting a 220 pound male soldier in full battle gear and carry him to safety, as some have noted.
Good point. If I were wounded in combat, I’d want the assurance that the squad mate behind me can lift me and all my gear off of the ground and move quickly to safety.
Apart from a few outliers, most women wouldn’t be able to do this, even with diet and exercise. Your gear would instead be ditched (no supplies), and you would be pulled along the ground slowly to safety.
But it’s probably also true that we could find some who can. So if they can manage all of the physical requirements, why should they not be given this opportunity?
If one of the aforementioned outliers can prove she can put a man over her shoulder and get him to safety, and she wants to go into combat, then… okay.
If we make an exemption so they only have to lift another woman… then they shouldn’t be allowed into squads with men. Any given squad member needs to be able to lift any other squad member.
Because. And I’m well aware that this is the worst possible answer.
Maybe I’m a dinosaur, too, because I believe God designed men to be the guardians of their families.
Update 1/27/2013, 7 pm: a short essay by a female veteran, posted by Jazz at HA.
The veteran is an excellent writer, so I recommend you read the entirety of her post. One excerpt confirmed my concerns about a woman’s ability to drag a fellow male soldier out of combat:
The number of women that can meet the male standard will be miniscule–I’d have a decent shot according to my PFTs, but dragging a 190-pound man in full gear for 100 yards would DESTROY me–and that miniscule number that can physically make the grade AND has the desire to go into combat will be facing an impossible situation that will ruin the combat effectiveness of the unit.