Captain Kristen Griest, the 32-year-old woman who became the U.S. Army’s first female infantry officer decided to speak up against the ‘watering down’ of physical-fitness standards for women and says that all soldiers should meet the same requirements.
Namely, in a piece for Modern War, she wrote that women shouldn’t be judged on a sliding scale. Why? Because some members of a unit wouldn’t be fully prepared, which could put soldiers at risk.
In the piece, she wrote that with equal opportunity comes responsibility.
The Army rolled out the gender-neutral fitness test last year, but 54 percent of women failed it, compared to 7 percent of men. So, the latest version of the fitness test that went into effect on April 1, 2021, includes some modifications for women. For example, the leg truck has been replaced with a plank to test core strength for women, and the Army also introduced their plan to ‘rank scores for men and women separately’ when they compete for promotions.
Griest became one of the first two women to graduate from the Army’s Ranger School in 2015 and wrote that she learned that your gender is not as much of a limitation as some might think.
Some people, however, have accused her of ‘internalized misogyny’, while others have praised her for her words and taken her side.
‘As the Army’s first female infantry officer, I have long awaited the elimination of a gender-based fitness test. The drastically lower female standards of the old Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) not only jeopardized mission readiness in combat units but also reinforced the false notion that women are categorically incapable of performing the same job as men,’ – she further added.
What do you think about this issue? Should the fitness tests in the Army be different for men and women? Feel free to discuss it in the comment section.
Source: Daily Mail