Army Secretary Nominee Worries the ACFT Will Push Too Many Women Out

Article here. Excerpt:

'President Joe Biden's nominee to be the next secretary of the Army, Christine Wormuth, told senators at her confirmation hearing Thursday she is concerned about the force's new fitness test and whether it will push a significant number of women out of the service.

"I have concerns on the implications of the test for our ability to continue to retain women," said Wormuth, who would be the first woman to serve in the role if confirmed.

She said the Army needs a good measure of fitness, but strict fitness standards across the board could shrink the service's talent pool for critical jobs that do not demand athletic ability, such as cyberwarfare roles.

Gillibrand, who chairs the personnel subcommittee, and Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., ushered a measure through last year suspending official implementation of the ACFT until the Rand study is complete.

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Women in Military Becomes Gender Battleground in South Korea

Article here. Excerpt:

'A heated debate in South Korea about mandatory military service for women is inflaming divisions between the sexes rather than narrowing social gaps, the country’s gender equality minister said.

Chung Young-ai, who leads the Gender Equality and Family Ministry, was responding to a question in a Bloomberg interview about whether young women should be made to join their male counterparts in serving in the armed forces. The issue has been the subject of wide discussion since April, when ruling party lawmaker and 2022 presidential hopeful Park Yong-jin reacted to local election defeats by suggesting mandatory military service for women would promote gender equality.'

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Senator Lamar Alexander v. Catherine Lhamon

Video here. Alexander starts addressing Lhamon after the first couple minutes.

User Clip: Senator Lamar Alexander v. Catherine Lhamon

JANUARY 18, 2017 Senate hearing

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Catherine Lhamon Nominated for Top Civil Rights Post

Article here. Excerpt:

'President Biden intends to nominate Catherine Lhamon to return to a position she held during the Obama administration as assistant secretary for civil rights at the Department of Education, paving the way for familiar civil rights policies.

If she’s confirmed by the Senate, Lhamon will take the lead on issues in education related to race, sexual assault and harassment, and LGBTQ rights -- and she’s expected to be active and aggressive in her approach.

“My guess is that not only will they continue many of the things that they did in Obama's second term, they will probably be more aggressive because I think that's where the center of the Democratic Party is now,” said Shep Melnick, a professor of political science at Boston College and author of The Transformation of Title IX: Regulating Gender Equality in Education (Brookings, 2018).'

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Demonising boys won’t turn them into angels

Article here. Excerpt:

'Moral panics tend to lead to poor decision making. In the aftermath of the London murder, the government Minister for Policing called for more PSHE (personal, social, health and economic education) in schools to teach boys to respect girls. Trainings and workshops in schools based on this theme are well-meaning and seem like a good idea, but the impact on boys is an unknown factor. Given the present volatile context for such workshops, the seemingly innocent message that boys need to treat girls with more respect could, quite possibly, have a negative impact on boys.

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The Gender Gap in Pandemic Job Losses Has Been Wildly Exaggerated

Article here. Excerpt:

'For more than a year, the U.S. has been flooded with gloomy headlines and dire predictions about women and work. "The pandemic is devastating a generation of working women," opined one Washington Post writer in February. Citing data showing that 2.5 million women dropped out of the workforce since the COVID-19 pandemic began, Vice President Kamala Harris said "the pandemic has put decades of the progress we have collectively made for women workers at risk."

Harris called it a "national emergency"—albeit one that could be fixed by greenlighting the Biden administration's coronavirus spending plan.
But the magnitude of this gender gap has never been as great as many have made it out to be. And recent data cast further doubt on the "she-cession" narrative. At the end of April 2021, the unemployment rate for women was slightly lower than the unemployment rate for men. And the women's labor force participation rate had recovered almost as much as the men's rate had.*'

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Swedish Women Accused of Defamation Connected to MeToo Found Guilty

Article here. Excerpt:

'The Swedish television programme Crime of the Week reviewed ten defamation cases linked to MeToo allegations over the last several years and found that in every single case, judges had sided against the women making public allegations of sexual abuse.

“All women have the right to their story, and you can tell what you want to a close circle of family and friends, but you can’t single people out in public,” lawyer Angel Eklund told SVT.

The broadcaster noted that eight women were convicted of gross slander, while the other two were convicted of libel. Six of the cases have seen a final judgement, while three others await appeals, and the final case has been referred for an appeal to the Swedish supreme court.

Half of the cases are connected to MeToo from the autumn and winter of 2017, while two others were made before the campaign and the remaining three after.

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UK: What new domestic abuse legislation means for social workers

Article here. Excerpt:

'The act sets out the first definition in law of what constitutes domestic abuse. The definition goes well beyond physical violence. It recognises that domestic abuse can be emotional, coercive or controlling or economic. To fall within the definition, both victim and perpetrator must be “personally connected”. The definition ensures that different types of relationships are captured, including ex-partners and family members.

The definition is gender neutral to ensure that all victims and all types of domestic abuse are sufficiently captured, and no victim is excluded from protection or access to services. The supporting statutory guidance will provide more detail on the features of domestic abuse, including by recognising that the majority of victims are women, and the majority of perpetrators are men. The definition of domestic abuse does not extend to paid and unpaid carers, unless they are also personally connected, such as a family member.'

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Suit challenges restaurant aid priority to women, minorities

Article here. Excerpt:

'A conservative legal outfit on Wednesday filed a lawsuit against President Joe Biden's administration for its prioritization of restaurants and bars owned by women and certain minorities in its COVID-19 relief package, arguing white men are being “pushed to the back of the line" for aid for their eateries.

The lawsuit led by the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty targets the period from May 3 until May 24 during which the $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund will only process and fund requests from businesses owned by women; veterans; or socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. Eligibility opens broadly after that period.

Biden has previously said that female-owned and minority-owned businesses have been disproportionately hurt by the COVID-19 economic crisis.'

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Female soldiers still have difficulty passing new army fitness test despite tweaks to accommodate them

Article here. Excerpt:

'If it’s anything like that time the FDNY allowed a woman to become a firefighter despite failing their fitness test? The US Army’s developing situation can be ignored by military leadership like it’s not a big deal.

According to “nearly half” of the female soldiers are failing the new Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT) that was introduced more than half a year ago.

It's very straight forward. "Female soldiers continue to lag male soldier scores in all events," the outlet says, citing a briefing report. 44% of women fail, but only 7% of men. The Army might need to make additional changes before the ACFT leaves it’s beta period after March 2022.

Keep in mind that the US Army already “adjusted” the test to better accommodate women back in March. So yes, it’s an identity politics related issue that’s putting the military’s physical readiness and capacity on the line.'

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Dumping on Men Again by Calling Them "Toxic"


Here we go again: disparaging men and masculinity. I am really growing to hate the expression "toxic masculinity." Why are the male traits of men and boys "toxic"? And why are not more people asking that question publicly?

The most recent article I have seen in the popular press comes from the UK's Daily Mail:

This report of so-called "research" from Australia claims, "The biggest indicator was the nature of a [man's] friendships—the fewer [he] had, the more likely [he was] to be 'toxic.'"

Note first that the researchers have taken the leap from referring to masculinity as "toxic" to labeling individual men as "toxic." Seeing that make my antennae go up and helped me identify various anti-male biases in the article.

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AU: Wandavision’s Dr. Strange played by Benedict Cumberbatch cut for being ‘white guy’

Article here. Excerpt:

'Actor Benedict Cumberbatch did a disappearing act from the WandaVision finale because Marvel honchos didn’t want a “white guy” stealing the show, a top studio boss said in a new interview.

Cumberbatch, who has previously played sorcerer Dr. Strange in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, was originally set to make a cameo in the Disney+ show’s last episode,Rolling Stone reported Monday.

“Some people might say, ‘Oh, it would’ve been so cool to see Dr. Strange,’” Feige said. “But it would have taken away from Wanda, which is what we didn’t want to do. We didn’t want the end of the show to be commoditised to go to the next movie — here’s the white guy, ‘Let me show you how power works.’”'

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Lesbian feminism breaks new ground in post #MeToo France

Article here. Excerpt:

'But there has also been a backlash. Philosopher Elisabeth Badinter, a veteran universal feminist voice, denounced in an article for the Journal du Dimanche last September an emerging "hatred of men" and "warlike neofeminism".

When journalist and local politician Alice Coffin's essay "The Lesbian Genius" came out in September, there was an outcry among France's political class, mostly due to one passage.

"It's not enough to help one another, we have to erase (men) from our minds, from our pictures, from our representations," Coffin wrote.

Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo responded: "I've spent my life fighting for equal rights for women, not for supremacy, including of women over men."'

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We are leaving fathers out of this important discussion

Article here. Excerpt:

'The recently-expanded child tax credit provision in the American Rescue Plan and the proposals in the American Families Plan are helpful and necessary steps to address child poverty, which has grown during the Covid-19 pandemic after years of decline. But to get at the root causes of child poverty, we need to address a key gap in our systems and policies and look at interventions that engage dads and support co-parenting for unmarried mothers and fathers. And I make that assertion from experience.

Twenty years ago, I started Good+ Foundation, aimed at helping kids and families in need, initially in New York, and eventually nationally. At first, we focused on mothers, who overwhelmingly bear the brunt of child care. But as we grew in communities across the country, we learned that to be successful in achieving our mission, we needed to engage and involve fathers. Simply put, where they're included in social programs, policies and legislation, we see better outcomes for kids -- and for mothers.'

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California county teacher training: U.S. a ‘parasitic’ system due to ‘invasion’ of white men

Article here. Excerpt:

'As part of its “Ethnic Studies Initiative,” Santa Clara County, California’s Office of Education recently lectured its teachers that the United States is a “parasitic” system which has led to “domestic violence, drug overdoses, and other social problems.”

The county’s teacher workshops were in preparation for implementation of the state’s new ethnic studies curriculum.

California approved the 900-page curriculum last month. Its overview section states oppression will be studied via the intersection(s) of “patriarchy, cisheteropatriarchy, exploitative economic systems, ableism, ageism, anthropocentrism, xenophobia, misogyny, antisemitism, anti-blackness, anti-indigeneity, Islamophobia, and transphobia.”'

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