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View Diary: Increasing rate of sexual assaults at the Coast Guard Academy. (7 comments)

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  •  This one does. (1+ / 0-)
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    Ginny in CO

    I agree with PB on all of this: deal with the rape culture itself and don't treat the victim as the only one 'at fault.'

    I was in many years ago now, and in fact there were few women then at all, either enlisted or officer. Women had only been allowed to enlist following a lawsuit (around '73-74 I believe): up to that point they were turned away.

    As for the officer corps, the very first CGA female cadets were still in the Academy during my hitch, and only graduated in the last couple of years. No female sea duty at that time either, only at small boat units or shore units. I served at a reserve unit that actually had about 8 women (all frozen at E-6/PO First class - they couldn't go for Chief even!), a seagoing cutter (327' class - females only as exotic passengers, not crew), and a headquarters (San Francisco in fact) where there were still virtually no women in the early 80's. It was very much a different era.

    I feel that it is the mindset of the Guard as it is now that is at fault: the service I knew and loved has changed for the worse, and has far more of a police force mentality than the easy-going sailors we were. We were still civilians at heart mostly, who just happened to be wearing a blue uniform for a few years, and we felt ourselves very much to be lifesavers first, police dead last. The move of the Guard into DHS in 2002 was a further change in the corporate mind: protect the homeland at all costs was such a mantra, it overwhelmed whatever basic humanity was left.

    I absolutely hate the current public term of "warriors" given to those in uniform now. It is separating those who serve from those they protect: we are becoming a society of Spartans, taught to kill to protect at any cost, and thus any behavior is acceptable for those 'warriors.' It seems rape is okay within this ethos: don't make waves or you'll weaken the warriors.

    Fuck that. We are fast becoming the next empire that falls, irreparable for all time. An ineffective civil government, a powerful oligarchy threatened by the plebeian masses, a restive military threatened with downsizing and riddled with theocratic insiders: when does the coup happen?

    Okay, I've gone way, way off on a tangent. I blame Reagan. He was elected in 1980, I left in 1982, disgusted with the new emphasis on militarism and policing in my service. We have made this mess, we're going to have to fix it, and soon.

    I hope you'll excuse my four letter Anglo-Saxonism up there, but it very succinctly puts my emotions in the right light.

    •  Oh, an error of omission on my part: (1+ / 0-)
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      Ginny in CO

      I didn't retire, I left after six years: 1976 - 1982. Remember, most folks only serve a little, and don't do the minimum 20 years to retire.

      A Reaganism of the era: because I chose not to re-enlist, I was refused unemployment after discharge. After all, I had "refused" work, so the new rules said no unemployment. Bastard: everyone before that year had gotten it, no problem. Why: it saved money, that's why.

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