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Opinion Letters Downgrading fitness requirements dangerous

The U.S. Marines are delaying their female fitness plan because more than half of female Marines in boot camp cannot meet the present minimum standards. "All the service branches are working on devising standards, training and other policies needed to open thousands of combat roles to women in 2016," USA-Today reported recently.

That literally means: compromises, accommodations, concessions, lowering, down-grading or diluting physical requirements and that's going to get people killed. However, in the "whatever it takes," encounter group mentality being forced on the military, at any cost, conscripts are expendable.

Vice President Joe Biden recently declared, "Innovation thrives where people breathe freely, speak freely, are able to challenge orthodoxy, and where newspapers can report the truth without fear of consequences." He was speaking in China about China, but do you think United States Marine officers (or the officers of any branch of the military) can speak the truth about broadening the human risk in battle or reducing the overall effectiveness of the Corps, without putting their own careers in jeopardy? Not a chance.

David L. Snell — Dillsboro, N.C.


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