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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 | Last updated: 12:57pm

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In response to “U of A Cadets praise women in combat decision” (4 Feb).

In his article, Ryan Revock gave a potential scenario of a female soldier engaging an enemy while serving as vehicle-mounted machine gunner in Afghanistan. The author then pointed out that this could be reality after the recent Department of Defense announcement to replace gender based barriers to service. The reality is that scenarios just like this have been going for the last decade in both Iraq and Afghanistan. As a company commander in Iraq from 2003-2004 every combat logistics patrol (convoy) from my unit that went into harm’s way had women in them. As a battalion executive officer in Afghanistan from 2009-2010, the same applied. The point being is that women have already been serving in positions of direct combat with the enemies of our nation. And they have done it with courage, distinction, selfless service and commitment, equally, and in some cases better, than their male counterparts. I, just like my cadets, praise the decision of the Department of Defense to allow women more opportunities to serve wherever and in whatever positions they choose. Not everyone can serve in the infantry or armor but everyone should be given the opportunity to try.

Sincerely,

Major Ben Walters, U of A Army ROTC Professor of Military Science

In response to “Lulu app might prevent men from getting the chance they deserve” (by K.C. Libman, Jan. 29):

We are writing in response to the comments that followed the article, “Lulu app might prevent men from getting the chance they deserve” — particularly the comments that dismiss and minimalize rape. Petty comments cannot obtain an endgame of change. The problem is not the technology directed at rating men or women on attractiveness or marriage prospects, but it is the environment many people foster — an environment that believes our rape culture is a myth or that feminists are creating, purposefully, a fear campaign against men.

In 2011, the United States Census Bureau reported approximately 158.9 million women/girls and 152.7 million men/boys (311.6 million total) in the resident population of the United States. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigations, an estimated 84,767 forcible rapes (the carnal knowledge of a person forcibly and against their will; excludes statutory rape) were reported to law enforcement in 2010. According to the 2010 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, one in five women and 1 in 71 men will be raped with current patterns. A 2000 survey commissioned by the Unites States Department of Justice found 20 percent of college women and 15 percent of college men are victims of forced rape. Those are just the reported cases. This is not a minority of the population making up numbers based on ideology and guesswork; it is fact, it is the culture we live in and continue to allow to germinate.

A rape culture will exist as long as people hide from it or make excuses for it. It will exist as long as rape jokes, slut shaming, and victimization endure. Rape and sexual assault continue at high rates, domestically and abroad. It is not something that should be accepted among our educated population. We, as the next generation of leaders, must become advocates of social justice and equity by not allowing others to minimize this epidemic of violence.

Sincerely,

The F.O.R.C.E. Interns of the Women’s Resource Center

Like K.C. Libman, Campus Health Service’s Oasis Program Against Sexual Assault and Relationship Violence disapproves of the use of social media technologies, such as Lulu, to publicly denigrate UA students. In some cases, this behavior may constitute sexual harassment, which affects both men and women. Nevertheless, we understand and support students’ desire for safety and community accountability at the UA. We encourage every student who has experienced sexual harassment, sexual assault, relationship violence or stalking to utilize campus resources. Students can report incidents to the Dean of Students Office (621-7057) or the University of Arizona Police Department (626-0066). They can also confidentially report incidents to or seek counseling and advocacy services from the Oasis Program (626-2051).

Furthermore, online commenters have grossly underestimated the incidence of campus sexual assault. Recent data collected by the National Institute of Justice show that nearly one in five women will experience attempted or completed sexual assault (defined as encompassing sexual battery and rape) during college.

— Megan McKendry, M.P.H., and Kathleen Young, Psy.D.
Oasis Program Against Sexual Assault and Relationship Violence

Online Comments:

In response to “U of A comments reveal apathy, lack of empathy (by Kristina Bui, Feb. 4):

I agree with the message of your column, and these kinds of posts are why I’ve never been interested in UA Confessions. I am a little confused about your opening sentence, though. The internet doesn’t corrupt otherwise wholesome people and force them to make these comments, it simply presents them in a way that is harder to ignore because they are available for a broader audience to read for a longer period of time (as compared to someone making this kind of comment verbally in passing). Perhaps if as a society we spent less time villianizing the internet we could spend more of it worrying about the people who make these kinds of comments. Empathy has been a problem for people long before computers.

—Janae Phillips

In response to “Online comments policy will help keep discussion relevant, mature” (by Lynley Price, Feb. 4):

“If a comment “discriminates against a group on the basis of gender, religion, disability, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or other identity” it will be removed.”

Ah, yes, the “Speech Police” strikes again. Seriously; why not just shut down ALL comments? The Wildcat will make for a really boring ‘PC’ read, anyway. Why not limit discussions to the permiability of beach sand? That’s bound to not offend anyone. Oh, dear! Beach sand is ‘off topic’. Nevermind.

Yawn….zzzzzzzzzzzzz………….

— Steve Langstroth

Well done. Getting rid of the riff-raff can only improve this website.

— Kevin Wos


Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Arizona Daily Wildcat.

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