Beltway Confidential

Marine Corps quietly delays pullup requirement for women

By |
Beltway Confidential,The Pentagon,Marine Corps,National Security,Ashe Schow,Analysis,Gender Issues

The Marine Corps has delayed the requirement for female Marines to do three pullups because most women have so far been unable to pass the test.

For 40 years, male recruits were required to perform three pullups to prove their upper body strength for combat, where they would need to carry heavy equipment and potentially lift themselves out of mud walls. Starting Jan. 1, female recruits would have been required to do the same.

But 55 percent of female recruits could not complete all three pullups, compared to just 1 percent of male recruits who could not, so the requirement was delayed. The Marine Corps made the announcement without fanfare on Twitter and its TV show, the Corps Report. Currently, female Marines only have to hold their chin above a pullup bar for 15 seconds.

This suggests a need by the Marine Corps to hide the fact that equality in combat may not be possible, though some female Marines are able to pass the test. So far 13 have done so.

Former Marine Greg Jacob told NPR that the onus is on the Marine Corps to better train female recruits.

“At first, a lot of women weren't able to do it,” Jacob said. “They were able to do one, some were able to do two, but what happened was by having that standard and enforcing that standard, it made my Marines, it made the troops go to the gym and train to that standard.”

Jacob said that within six months, the women he trained were able to do nine to 12 pullups.

So it is possible for women to perform three or more pullups, but the Marine Corps' decision to put off the requirement for women shows reluctance to accept that men and women are not physically equal, and that women may need more training to get the upper body strength necessary to pass the test.

No standards should be lowered for women when it comes to the strength and skills necessary to defend the U.S. The safety of the country, and the men and women who serve it, is far more important than politically correct special interests.

View article comments Leave a comment