Cassandra Was Right!

We can see the inequality inherent in the system in Marine Corps regulations on umbrellas:
Per Marine Corps uniform regulations, the men are not allowed to carry or use umbrellas while in uniform. Female Marines can carry “an all-black, plain standard, or collapsible umbrella at their option during inclement weather” but not with combat uniforms.
At their option? What kind of nonsense is this? As is well known, everything in the military is either forbidden or required. My favorite example of this was at the military-controlled portion of Baghdad airport, where there was a signpost near the entrance. On the way in, the sign directed, 'Absolutely no headgear shall be worn past this point. Stow all covers.' On the way out, it said, 'Headgear mandatory past this point.'

If it's winter and your hands are cold, are female Marines permitted to put their hands in their pockets 'at their option'? If not, why the discrepancy in the pursuit of female comfort? After all, the new primary mission of the US military could reasonably be defined as ensuring the psychological comfort of female servicemembers. Why not their physical comfort as well?

H/t: Althouse, who is also having a ton of fun mocking this story.


Cass said...

I knew that if I lived long enough, one day you would admit that I was right about something! :)

*running away*

Grim said...

It's probably happened before, and it might even happen again. :)

Actually, I was really surprised about this policy. I had no idea female Marines were allowed to carry umbrellas in uniform.

Elise said...

Why are they? Concerns about a bad hair day? Afraid make-up will run? So sweet they'll melt if they get wet?

Grim said...

Nobody seems to know. The policy was last reviewed twenty years ago, so most of the people who were there for the last discussion are retired now.

Do you know the story of the old Boer War artillery officer, Elise?

E Hines said...

Strikes me that the old artillery officer was dated. The apparently extra men were no longer horse holders; their purpose had been updated: these men were prepositioned combat loss replacements.

And the lady Marines' bumbershoots are a ready supply of metal spokes for fishing out bullet and shrapnel fragments and of fabric for stopping up wounds.

Eric Hines

Elise said...

No, I didn't know that story, Grim. Thanks for passing it along - I really like it and will keep it in mind.

Texan99 said...

Well, of course, it wouldn't be fair to deprive them of their livelihoods, would it?

DL Sly said...

I asked MH about this in the early years of our marriage. His explanation was that it went more toward the uniform appearance detail than anything. Face it, when a guy Marine comes in from the rain, he wipes his face and head with a towel...all done. A female Marine? Eh, not so easy.
At least, that's the way he understood it as a young LCpl lo those 20-odd yrs ago.

William said...

It was that way in the early 90s and nobody really cared. Sure there was a bit of back and forth but I only ever saw one Marine carry an umbrella and that distance was measured in feet. Now the Ladies, without the benefit of frame caps that covered their hair and other necessities... They could carry umbrellas. A few of them even did on occasion, in Charlies or better.

William sends.

douglas said...

"Face it, when a guy Marine comes in from the rain, he wipes his face and head with a towel...all done. A female Marine? Eh, not so easy."

Well, they could get one of those easy to maintain haircuts the guys get...

Texan99 said...

That's what they could do if serving in the Armed Forces were more important than having decorative hair.

It amazes me that this even needs to be discussed.