8/21/15

Woohoo! It’s Feminism Friday!! I’ve got two major stories I’d like to cover this week:

1. Army Ranger Graduates:

I posted a while back about the women included in this year’s class of Army Rangers. Well, two of those women have successfully made it through the course and graduated today with 96 male classmates! This is an amazing accomplishment as the requirements for just the physical fitness test are ridiculous and sound like my worst nightmare:

  • 49 pushups
  • 59 situps
  • 5 mile run in 40 minutes
  • 6 chin-ups
  • Swim test
  • Land navigation test
  • 12 mile foot march in 3 hours
  • Multiple obstacle courses
  • 4 days of military mountaineering
  • 3 parachute jumps
  • 4 air assaults on helicopters
  • 27 days of mock combat patrols

As the article discusses, the training standards were not changed in any way to compensate for the women. Unfortunately, despite this amazing accomplishment, the Army does not allow for the women to apply to join their classmates in the elite special ops 75th Ranger Regiment. Let’s hope that this limitation is lifted very soon as these women have truly earned their place amongst the men. http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/08/21/433482186/first-female-soldiers-graduate-from-army-ranger-school

2. Viagra for women – “The little pink pill?”

Lucca sent me this article today and I think the issues behind the FDA’s decision to approve the female libido pill are very interesting for many reasons. With a pill that has been twice rejected by the FDA previously and has no major chemical changes since the aforementioned rejections, what would suddenly cause the FDA to approve a pill which was originally labeled as unsafe if not political pressures? Putting aside the FDA’s decision for a minute, there are many other issues behind the concept of a female libido pill in the first place. Just to name a few…

  1. The diagnosis of a potentially non-existent issue
  2. The pill is built to manipulate the chemicals in the brain versus simply creating bloodflow to a specific area of the body. Libido issues in women are very different than erectile dysfunction issues in men. This type of chemical manipulation is very serious and cannot be directly compared to the mechanical issues associated with erectile dysfunction.
  3. Feeding the misconceptions of female sexuality and adding pressure to the idea that women need to perform in  a certain way. What concerns me here is the way that this pill is likely to be explained by the media and simplified by men and women alike as an easy solution to a complex/non-existent issue.

I guess that time will tell what happens with this story but I think it’s a great dialogue to start amongst the group now in order to understand the significance of what this pill means to our society as news of this decision spreads and the pill hits the market in October. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/08/20/female-viagra-is-bad-science.html?via=mobile&source=email

As always, Happy Feminism Friday and I hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

-Kat

 

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