Kimberley Munley and women in combat

Damn you, William Saletan! You stole my idea for a post today, viz., the heroism of Kimberley Munley in taking down the Fort Hood shooter demonstrates the silliness of banning women from combat roles.

It's clear that men are, on the whole, stronger than women. But it's also clear that the strongest women are stronger than the weakest men. That's the problem with these group average of abilities. In the US, blacks have among the lowest average IQ scores and Ashkenazi Jews among the highest. (I will point out here that I have NO doubt that much, if not all, of that is due to environmental/cultural factors such as endemic racism. Regardless of how that difference came to be, that difference is still there, which goes toward my point. I also do question the efficacy of IQ for detecting intelligence, which also, more circuitously, goes toward my point.) But that hardly means that any given black will have a lower IQ than any given white - quite the contrary. Our president has quite a high IQ, and it seems he did not get it only from his white side. And I need look no further than some of my relatives to see an Ashkenazi Jew lacking in smarts (such as my great-great-aunt who informed Fiorello LaGuardia that her sister was seeking a divorce on the grounds that the husband "hung around with Italians." I repeat, she told that to Fiorello LaGuardia.) Group averages can tell us nothing about group members.

So as long as there are women who can handle themselves in combat, and who can pass the tests that are required for such positions, why not permit them to serve in such positions, except out of misplaced chivalry? Same with sports. If the women can compete, there's not reason not to let them in.


  1. Elizabeth, it isn't just in the US that blacks have the lowest IQ scores *as a group*. Everyone sees the same thing -- Blacks, Whites, Asians, in order of increasing average IQ, with Ashkenazi Jews at the very top. Sephardic Jews have no IQ boost, IIRC. This isn't entirely a cultural thing, as we have evidence that the human brain is still evolving quite rapidly. It would be highly unlikely if all human brains in all parts of the world evolved in the same way. That isn't how evolution works. As geographically distant groups mix genes, we should eventually see less distinctive groupings, just as we'll see fewer physically distinctive racial features among humans in general.

  2. Kimberley Munley is a true hero.

    I, also, have Ashkenazi Jewish relatives who aren't exactly nuclear physicists.