February 9, 2016

"[E]qually fit men and women demonstrate their fitness differently."

"Whether physical fitness standards discriminate based on sex, therefore, depends on whether they require men and women to demonstrate different levels of fitness.... [T]he numbers of push-ups men and women must complete are not the same, but... the fundamental issue [is] whether those normalized requirements treat men in a different manner than women.... [A]n employer does not contravene Title VII when it utilizes physical fitness standards that distinguish between the sexes on the basis of their physiological differences but impose an equal burden of compliance on both men and women, requiring the same level of physical fitness of each."

Said the Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit in Bauer v. Lynch, decided January 11, 2016, dealing a loss to a man the FBI rejected because he couldn't do the required 30 pushups. He could do 29. If he'd been a woman, 14 would have been enough. But if he'd been a woman, he wouldn't have been able to do 29 pushups, now, would he? What's harder, for a man to do 30 pushups or a woman to do 14? The FBI is trying to set a standard that makes the 2 tasks equally hard. That's equality enough for Title VII purposes.

Isn't it odd that he could do 29 but not 30, when 30 was the requirement? How does that happen? Such perfect facts for the argument he ended up making. A losing argument, it turned out.

What do you think of these "gender-normed" standards?

90 comments:

Phil 3:14 said...

New math: 30=15. I'm sure it's the same for weight lifted or race run. I'm sure the criminals will respected the gender-normed reality too.

"Slow down Larry, that's a woman chasing us"

rhhardin said...

It ought to be age-normed too.

Smart men are smarter than smart women as well, so there's another problem.

Triangle Man said...

The guy should have won his case because the measure of "30 pushups" is arbitrary. That is, unless the FBI can show results from a study showing that "30 pushups" is a valid and reliable predictor of job performance. I am assuming that they guy was applying to be an Agent and not a Push-upper. By the same token, the measures of job performance should also be subject to studies of validity and reliability.

Gender indexed measures make sense, but only to the extent that they are also valid and reliable predictors of job performance. Another key aspect of this discussion is recognizing that different Agents (I presume) will perform their jobs differently depending on their individual strengths and weaknesses (broadly speaking). Women and men may do the same job differently, but with similar results.

Michael P said...

So the court endorsed a "separate but equal-ish" approach?

(I think that's about all I need to say to express my opinion on the decision.)

Bob Ellison said...

I hear Michael Phelps is going to come out as a woman for the 2016 Olympics.

Hagar said...

Make it up as you go.

lgv said...

Isn't this how it has always been? Only now have made a big deal out of it because of some insistence that women are equal. They are not physically equal. If the argument were that 30 pushups were required in order to do the job, the guy's argument would be much better, like Ranger standards. Instead, it is about fitness.

As to the number of pushups, there could certainly be studies to correlate fitness and pushups. We don't really know the validity of 30 vs. 14 without seeing how it was created.

traditionalguy said...

It's like golf handicaps. Now everyone can play. The ladies use the red tees.

Bob Ellison said...

There's that old story about men and women betting in a bar on who can lift a quarter off the floor without bending the knees, or something like that. I can't find it. It comes down to weight distribution, and in that particular case, women tend to have an advantage. As in carrying a child with one arm, because they tend to have hips.

I wonder whether techniques in assisting wounded comrades are male-specific. No, I don't wonder; I'm certain. The fireman carry is something almost no woman could accomplish, but it's the most efficient way for a man to hoist and carry another human. A woman might do better just boosting the person onto a hip.

Johanna Lapp said...

So rescuing 200-pound men would be nice, but not mandatory, for firefighters now? Sounds like a disparate impact lawsuit to me!

Saint Croix said...

Why would the FBI adopt different standards in the first place? If the ability to do certain physical tasks is important--for instance, the ability to win a street fight--why would it be necessary to have agents who cannot win a street fight? Is the court saying that a universal standard is unconstitutional, because it would result in a gender gap?

This is the legal system that says it's unconstitutional to recognize two sexes in marriage! The one instance where sex discrimination is obvious and essential--the creation of a baby--and we are not allowed to see any difference at all. But when it comes to doing a push-up, all of a sudden we have to go, "oh, you're a girl!"

JSD said...

The FBI, nice blue windbreakers but they suck at solving crime. Miss Iceland had to help them find Whitey Bulger. I don’t think doing 30 pushups will make them any better.

Henry said...

The guy should have sued his gym.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

You don't need to do any pushups in order to prove that Hillary is a scum sucking criminal.

Saint Croix said...

Double standards are malign because of the assumption of biological inferiority. Why should we assume, as a matter of law, that women are the weaker sex?

William said...

To paraphrase a legal term "Where the reason for the rule ends, the rule should end also". Here, where the reason for the rule exists, the rule should exist also. If women are to be side by side with men on the battlefield they should have to pass the same physical standards.

Michael K said...

My daughter has been an FBI agent for 17 years. She joined when she was thirty and had passed the bar in two states. By the end of her time at the Academy, she was running 7 miles a day. I don't know about pushups. I never asked her. During the Academy training she was intimidated by another female recruit who could speak several languages and seemed better educated and experienced. However, the final exercise was a scenario of arresting a white collar criminal who suddenly became violent and the other women dissolved in a puddle of tears.

My daughter, who had worked as a bank teller waiting for her California Bar results, had been held up twice and each time had given the robber the "bait pack" of money which explodes as he leaves the bank. She kept her cool. I still don't know about pushups.

MaxedOutMama said...


I think this decision contradicts established legal principles.

It is certainly possible to say that "fitness" as an abstract concept is a requirement of being an FBI agent, but since the admission standards recognize a difference between male and female "fitness" standards, it must therefore be true that the standards are properly individualized.

That, then, puts the burden on the FBI to explain why being able to do 29 instead of 30 makes that person meaningfully less fit than other males.

The courts are trying to save an irrational standard.

Tank said...

30 pushups? Shit, I'm 63 and I can still do 30 pushups. If I had to, to pass a test, I could probably do 50 or 60 (would not feel great later). What kind of fit man can't do 30 pushups? When I was 23 or 24 years old, and 50 pounds overweight, I could do more than 30 pushups. And, I'm not particularly strong.

exhelodrvr1 said...

IS the standard designed to measure relative or absolute fitness levels? If relative (which is what seems to be the case now), then they also need to adjust for body types, arm length, etc., not just gender.

Tank said...

I think it's true that a "fit" woman and a "fit" man would have different absolute levels of strength and endurance. Isn't the question really about what is needed for the job. I mean, if the job requires carrying heavy loads of _________ (whatever, does not matter), what difference does it make if a woman is "fit" for a woman, if she can't do the job?

The Drill SGT said...

30 years ago when I was an Army Captain, I started an application for the FBI. They actually had two different tests. one was the one discussed here. The other, I suspect was a weapons test designed to weed out female lawyers (sorry Michael :)

It had 3 events. I dont know to this day what the standards were, I just know I was told to do my best.

1. rack a 12 gauge pump back as many times as I could in 60 seconds
2. dry fire a 38 special as many times in 60 seconds
3. in a standing position, hold a 30.06 rifle on a target for as long as I could.

all had some level of link to job duties, but I suspect the major purpose was to triage women.

Daniel Richwine said...

I suppose it might make sense if the FBI was measuring fitness. It looks odd, though.

The Drill SGT said...

FWIW, in the discussion of Female infantry, the Army PT tests measure fitness, not job ability. Hence the failing male standard at each age band is about equal to the female perfect score.

Trust me, to be a good grunt, you need you need to be pretty much able to max the male test. Much less and you will be the squad goat...

Put women into rifle squads and you assure yourself that the weakest link will be female. That won't do much for anybody's morale.

Or mission success.

Brando said...

All that should matter is the ability needed to do the job. If the job requires picking up 50 lbs, running a mile in seven minutes, and reassembling a pistol in X seconds, then the same rules should apply for men and women. Different standards for each means one of two things--either less qualified women are being passed over more qualified men, or the standards were all crap anyway.

So average women have certain advantages and disadvantages physically compared to average men--who cares? What matters is for the job, full stop.

MaxedOutMama said...

And then there is the new line of decisions about transsexualism. Along with the rulings about bathrooms and so forth, what if this gentleman shows back up and applies as a WOMAN? He'll suddenly be about the fittest woman the FBI has ever had.

If there is a rational basis for gender-normed physical standards, than the idea that a man who thinks he/she's a woman and a woman who thinks she/he's a man should be treated as such under law does not make a whole lot of sense.

Finally, the legal basis of fitness standards imposed for admission has to be related to the actual work required in the job, and I don't think this test has been met. If a woman is "fit" for the job with fourteen pushups, how is possible to say that the man who did 29 is not?

That's where I think this fails. The FBI could possibly craft a standard that would do the same thing by imposing the same physical tests but on a point system, so that a lightly-muscled but highly fit person could get more points on endurance tests, for example. But I don't think the standards described are legal.

tim maguire said...

If there is some reason why agents need to be able to do 30 push ups, then the standard should be 30 push ups. If there is some need to be able to do 30 push ups, then it is irrelevant that a woman who can 15 push ups is the female equivalent of a man who can do 30. 15 is still not 30.

Gahrie said...

What do you think of these "gender-normed" standards?

I'm all for them as long as they provide an advantage for women, and a disadvatage for men. (Of course)

tim maguire said...

Tank said...
30 pushups? Shit, I'm 63 and I can still do 30 pushups. If I had to, to pass a test, I could probably do 50 or 60 (would not feel great later). What kind of fit man can't do 30 pushups? When I was 23 or 24 years old, and 50 pounds overweight, I could do more than 30 pushups. And, I'm not particularly strong.


Stopping at 29 shows a weakness of character. Determination alone could have squeezed out one more even if the muscles were done. (I'm sure you've heard the term "old man strength"--it refers to that extra push that comes from a mental toughness that is more common among older men.)

Bob Ellison said...

My son tells me that in firefighting school he was taught pretty much to drag wounded folks out of danger, not carry them. That makes sense. I asked, "What if it's a really heavy person, and you're by yourself?" He said, "You're never by yourself." I hope that's true.

James Pawlak said...

"Gender" based physical differences are most important in life/death situations. When young and in the fullness of my "manly" strength I helped local fire-fighters move "charged" fire-hoses. I deny that most women have the power to do so. The same holds true for many combat roles when the soldier or marine must rush a full load of personal weapons-and-gear, PLUS SUCH ITEMS AS VERY HEAVY MORTAR BASE PLATES---Often over broken land and under fire.

Paddy O said...

The guy should have won his case because the measure of "30 pushups" is arbitrary.

30 pushups isn't a fitness standard, it's a "shows a tiny bit of discipline and attention to requirements" standard. It doesn't take much time to be able to do 30 pushups unless there are other physical issues or if a person hasn't worked on it until the day of the test.

tim in vermont said...

If a man and a woman are equally fit, who would you bet on in a fight?

Ron Winkleheimer said...

@Saint Croix

I find an obviously staged fight less than convincing. He stood around taking her hits while delivering a few obviously pulled strikes. She was fast, but he outweighed her,by a lot. Simply stepping inside her reach and delivering an actual punch would have ended the match quickly.

Here is a more likely scenario:

http://www.vidoevo.com/yvideo.php?i=Y1duMnVNcWuRpcGhZTjQ&madtv-self-defense-for-women

Rocketeer said...

I think real world tasks are not "gender-normed." I think suspects don't resist at 50% of their capability because the agent apprehending them happens to be a woman. That's what I think.

chuck said...

> What do you think of these "gender-normed" standards?

Leftist arithmetic, 14 = 30. And there you have the root of many problems.

TosaGuy said...

Push ups are part of the Army PT test and I've done a lot of them. Doing 30, which is still a failure in the Army for all men regardless of age, requires an the barest minimum of working out to do. The dude should have done 15 a day for 2 months prior to the test and he would have rocked 50 during the test.

Char Char Binks said...

"Isn't it odd that he could do 29 but not 30, when 30 was the requirement? How does that happen?" Isn't it odd that I can't do one more pushup than I'm capable of? What's wrong with me?

JCCamp said...

@ MaxedoutMama -

"...standards imposed for admission has to be related to the actual work required in the job..."

That was my initial thought, but those FBI guys...very crafty. They predicated the standards on fitness. So, to be an agent, you had to be fit, and a fit male needed to exert the effort to do a timed run, x number of sit-ups...and 30 push-ups. A female - scientifically determined of course, no doubt by the FBI scientists - would have to exert the exact same effort in a shorter run, fewer sit-ups and 14 push-ups...but the same effort, and thus...the same fitness level. So, equality!

The candidate who sued apparently had an issue with push-ups. He originally failed the test, went back to school, got his PhD, reapplied, passed the entrance exam and did his 30, etc, but at the final exam, could only eke out 29, and was told "Resign or be fired." The FBI promptly hired him as a civiliam analyst.

In my law enfrocement agency, they simply did away with almost all physical tests (and IQ tests) except body temperature and number of hands and feet. Leave it to the Feds to think of something creative to skirt those pesky "related to actual job performance" physical standards and still find a way to have 2 sets (or four, or six or who knows how many?).

Saint Croix said...

I find an obviously staged fight less than convincing. He stood around taking her hits while delivering a few obviously pulled strikes. She was fast, but he outweighed her,by a lot. Simply stepping inside her reach and delivering an actual punch would have ended the match quickly.

You think Jackass is staged? Dude, you must not have seen the alligator bite his nipple.

Quinn Satterwaite said...

"Isn't it odd that he could do 29 but not 30, when 30 was the requirement? How does that happen?"


Zeno's paradox

Che Dolf said...

Gonzalez then proceeded to run through the entrance hall to the cross hall of the White House, past the staircase that leads up to the first family's residence. He was confronted by a female Secret Service agent, who he overpowered, and made it all the way to the East Room...

Sometimes absolute strength matters more than "fitness."

Abdul Abulbul Amir said...

You are all missing the point on military standards. They are set by what's available, not some absolute measurement.

For example, at one time the submarine service required 20/20 uncorrected vision and no more than three fillings in the teeth. When I left sub school I got a waiver for 20/400+ vision and a second waiver for too thick glasses. The fillings standard was history.

The physical requirements for combat infantry should be set as high as possible and still fill the billets. It's not a question of qualified versus unqualified. Why would you deliberately put lives at risk when you could take more qualified over less qualified?

Jane the Actuary said...

This is how I read it:

There are two types of "fitness standards": the first measures raw ability to do the job. Carry a man out of a burning building. Load a vehicle with heavy equipment. etc.

The second is more of a measure of the individual ability to train themselves to a high level of physical ability, as one part of an overall measure of ability; in the latter case, different physical levels for men and women makes sense.

Tank said...

Abdul and Tank have the same (unfortunate) vision.

Saint Croix said...

For some reason, women have no desire to be a Jackass.

Here is Johnny Knoxville, screaming like a girl.

Sebastian said...

Next up: gender-norming math and lit tests. Because equality.

Saint Croix said...

If FBI agent was a low status profession, like Jackass or coal miner, women would be like, no thanks.

If Jackass was a high status profession, there would be a class action lawsuit, and the Supreme Court would be explaining why that bunny rabbit is biting that woman's nipple.

EMD said...

I don't think I want an FBI agent who can't do 30 freaking pushups.

EMD said...

"Next up: gender-norming math and lit tests. Because equality."

That would help boys probably more than girls, so that definitely won't happen.

Basil said...

A new low in why the public holds the federal courts in such low esteem. This is straight out of Alice in Wonderland mixed with a touch of Animal House.

Leslie Graves said...

I think he should have, and could have, done the 30 push-ups.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

You think Jackass is staged? Dude, you must not have seen the alligator bite his nipple.

I don't know, I've never seen it. I have no desire to watch morons deliberately harm themselves. But that fight clearly was.

Its a matter of physics. Mass matters. A larger person is going to be able to absorb and deliver more force. That's why there are weight classes in boxing and martial arts and wrestling. Its the reason why bars have bouncers that are 6'2" and weigh 220 lbs instead of 5'2" and 120.

Here is a video of a young guy who weighs (I guess) about 120 or so who sucker punches a bus driver who is apparently in his 50s and over weight. I mean the guy is really out of shape. But he basically ignores the punch (to his face) gets up, grabs the smaller guy and wails on him.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lg8SkFxziKQ

I'm not saying training can't make a difference, but there are some things it can't overcome.

Ninety pound women might beat 170 lb men on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but they don't in the real world. And a "fight" where the man is clearly reluctant to actually, you know, hit the woman, is staged.

Telling women that they can defend themselves from men physically, if they get themselves some skillz, is not doing them a favor. It is going to get some of them hurt.

A woman who wants to defend herself should: buy a gun and learn how to use it, practice situational awareness, not get drunk in public, go out in groups and don't get separated, and stay in well lit and traveled areas. Buy the way, that advice applies to men also. But these days its denounced as victim blaming.

sean said...

Shouldn't we have gender-normed standards in academia?

Rick said...

What do you think of these "gender-normed" standards?

1. I think there will never be a case in which gender-norming works to the detriment of women.

2. Standards should be matched to job requirements rather than to how "hard" it is to meet them. We're trying to match abilities to jobs so why does the level of effort required matter? Such an inappropriate focus on irrelevant criteria shows we decide the outcome first and then consider the justification.

lgv said...

I think women should play with the same size basketball.

I think that men and women should play the same net height in volleyball, too.

There is no reason for such sexism in sports. We are all equal.

holdfast said...

30 pushups is nothing for any male who is not grossly obese. For a woman it is a tough but achievable standard. We could usually get the female candidates to that stage on a six week course, though very few of the females were ever able to do more than a couple of chin-ups.

JCCamp said...

It's the hypocrisy that drives me batty. Why not just admit there are double standards and be done with it? I mean, quoting the movie, who you gonna call? They're the government. Instead, we get the FBI and the 4 Court of Appeals doing contortions trying to justify what any simpleton can see is nothing more than one standard for men, and another for women. Two standards cannot be dissimilar and simultaneously tied to absolute job performance for the same job description as required by law.

This is affirmative action in a nutshell. It's not about whether the plaintiff could have sucked it up and done one more push-up. It's about the government dictating winners and losers in the genetic lottery.

Dan Hossley said...

It depends upon the underlying requirement for upper body strength. For instance, a fireman needs to be able to drag heavy hoses and carry bodies from burning buildings. Gender norming, a euphemism for lowering the standards, makes no sense in that case.

So what task does an FBI agent perform that requires the level of strength to do 30 push ups? Investigate Hillary Clinton? That just takes a strong stomach.

Quaestor said...

Gender norming is the kind of sophistry that only a lawyer could think wasn't fundamentally fraudulent.

Danno said...

Rather than bitch about it, this guy should do a "Bruce to Caitlyn" conversion (at least in his mind) and reapply.

Hagar said...

The most important characteristic in a FBI agent is a modicum of common sense.

As for the infantry, I served as in the fire direction center of a heavy mortar company and as a truck driver and did quite well in both functions though I don't think I ever did as much as 10 consecutive push-ups.

On the other hand, we had a lieutenant (West Point at that!) who could do 200+ push-ups, but for whom the uses and operation of a heavy mortar platoon was and remained a complete mystery and he once managed to get a whole battalion lost on the autobahn.

EDH said...

In the words of Dirty Harry: "If you get blown away, he gets blown away with you. And that's a hell of a price to pay for being stylish."

JSD said...

I don’t care if anybody at the FBI can do pushups. These guys aren’t MMA contestants. They need brains and street smarts.

During the Bin Laden hunt, the FBI wanted an age appropriate “wanted poster” of Osama. They were unhappy with the artist’s rendering, so they googled until they found an image they felt was more suitable. Unfortunately it was some guy who was a member of the Spanish Parliament. Words fail.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Strength is a social construct. Push ups are biased towards people with the "right" kind of strength, so it makes sense to adjust those biased ("objective") results to yield the socially-correct result.

Reality is a social construct. I'm beginning to understand the implications of that idea as well as just how widespread it is.

John Scott said...

For what it's worth, I'm pretty sure the push-up test, along with sit-ups and pull-ups need to be done in one minute. No matter how hard he tried he apparently wasn't able to squeeze out the required number in time.

Oso Negro said...

A sham of a mockery of two shams of a mockery of a sham of a mockery of a sham.

Jason said...

He couldn't do 30?

The judge should have closed the folder, stepped down from the bench, and smacked the shit out of this little pipsqueak like Don Corleone slapping Johnny Falcone and told him to act like a man.

And the bailiff and even his own lawyer should have kicked him in the kidneys to punctuate the sentence.

Jeez, what a nation of pussies we've become.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

Phil 3:14:

15 mod 15 = 0
30 mod 15 = 0

The new math is based on congruences with politically favored moduli. This is how "=" excludes politically unfavorable orientations and behaviors, while retaining an illusion of supporting equality.

n.n said...

He should have declared himself trangender/crossover or trangender/fluid, thereby avoiding the gender traps, and exposing the dysfunction inherent to social congruence constructs (e.g. class diversity, pro-choice religious/moral philosophy, anti-war/pro-abortion).

n.n said...

Saint Croix:

where sex discrimination is obvious and essential--the creation of a baby

With the acceptance of sperm depositors and rent-a-wombs, even this biological constraint is negotiable. This is how transgender/homosexual behaviors were normalized, but not before progressive morality encouraged heterosexual dysfunction and throwing babies under buses for sport.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

The solution is simple. A gender agnostic level of fitness is a criterion to determine placement. If it still meets other performance criteria, then the physical fitness test only serves to constrain or orient (i.e. bias) its placement.

We need to deprecate the use of gender oriented pronouns. The use of "he" and "she" is the Matriarch's tradition that increases inertia opposing transgender progress.

David said...

holdfast said...
30 pushups is nothing for any male who is not grossly obese.


How old are you? Your time will come too.

Rocketeer said...

Why would you deliberately put lives at risk when you could take more qualified over less qualified?

Social justice is more important than mere mission survivability, bro.

Triangle Man said...

I finally had a chance to read the ruling. The justification for the physical fitness requirements is based on the likelihood of injury during training and derived from a study of agents in training over time. It's not based on subsequent job performance. I revise my original suggestion that the dude should have won. What he should have done is worked on his pushups.

Static Ping said...

It is dependent why the FBI insists on X push-ups. If the FBI thinks that it is a physical minimum for an agent to do the job, then it should be X for everyone, male and female. If the X is more of a proxy of general physical fitness, in the sense that any man or woman is good physical shape should be able to do the job, then different gender requirements are fine, though I would wonder why the standards are not simply guidelines and modified on an individual basis. If the test is there just to see if the applicants will take the test seriously, then the standards are besides the point.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Rick,

Standards should be matched to job requirements rather than to how "hard" it is to meet them. We're trying to match abilities to jobs so why does the level of effort required matter? Such an inappropriate focus on irrelevant criteria shows we decide the outcome first and then consider the justification.

If the standards are to be matched to job requirements, they should obviously be lowered for men, because the lower standards are just fine for women. You want 14 pushups for women, make it the same for men. Ditto, obviously, for male firefighters, who shouldn't have to haul a body out the door if women can't.

Not cool with this? Why not?

n.n said...

The transgender/homosexual/crossover movements were a setback in our race to gender agnosticism, and the pro-choice cult undermined the progress to draft sperm depositors and womb banks for service of the greater good. There can be only It and shared responsibility.

takirks said...

The stupidity of using body-weight based events for physical fitness testing is readily apparent to anyone who has ever had to put together a working party for a random requirement in the military. A 110lb woman may max her PT test, doing 80 reps of situps and pushups, and then move her 110lbs of mass around a PT test track fast enough to max her age group, but...

There is the unfortunate fact that no matter how fit she is, she's still only moving her body weight around. In terms of absolute work performed and stamina demonstrated, that slightly out of shape 196lb male who does 60 pushups and situps, and then barely passes his run may, in fact, be the better bargain in terms of what he can actually do, and the amount of physical effort he can put forth.

The physical fitness tests ought to be based on a set, validated weight for each job, and then judged accordingly. If a woman can lift 100lb weight over her head, and then show she can lift 50lbs just as high repetitively, she's met the "Heavy" requirement for the most demanding MOS strength category. That's what we ought to be testing for, not some individually tailored repetitive exercise.

Right before I retired, at age 44 and with an accumulated abundance of physical debilities stemming from years of accumulated injuries, I was asked to help a group of young female officers move a floor safe--They wanted a detail put together, because the three of them working together couldn't budge the 500lb safe to move it where they wanted to. All three of these officers routinely scored on the extended scale of the Army Physical Fitness Test, the one that I had to take with alternate events due to injuries, and they couldn't move the safe. Rather than drag my people in off what they were doing, I went and moved the safe by myself. No muss, no fuss, no bother, and without breaking a sweat.

You can talk trash all you want about your score on the tests, or how many reps you do of a particular exercise, but the sad fact is, none of these "fitness tests" actually measures raw, physical power, strength, or stamina. I don't know how many string-bean types I used to pass on lengthy road marches where they'd be waiting to board trucks because they couldn't hang, carrying the load, and the rest of us so-called "fatbodies" would be just trucking along, carrying twice the load they were.

They really, really need to revamp the tests, especially now that the lunatics are trying to integrate women into the combat arms. I don't have a particular brief for or against that, but if you're gonna take the job, you'd better be able to do it. A female doing the female APFT is not doing the same amount of work her male counterpart is, even if she does the same events the same number of reps, and manages to make the run in the same time he does. Due to the fact of sexual dimorphism, the typical female body composition is not the same as the male, and as such, her performance on all events cannot be assessed as being the same. You weigh 110lbs, and then try to compare that to someone whose body mass isn't in their lower extremities and weighs 190lbs? There is no way you're moving the same amount of weight he is, or performing the same amount of work, in the physics sense. This being the case, they need to go to set, standard weights, and assess using those.

Unfortunately, if they do that, I can also almost guarantee you that 90% of the women currently in the military are going to be separated for not meeting the standards. Which will mean, of course, that the standards will be turned into political footballs, and thrown away.

Paul said...

Nathan Bedford Forrest, Confederate General that is, once said, "Getting there firstest with the mostest" as for what was important in battle.

The whole point of pushups, chinups, distance running, weight lifting, etc.. IS TO GET THERE FIRST WITH THE MOST.

And 14 pushups just don't cut it in a man's world.

Harold said...

I am old enough to remember when we were told gender norming WOULD NEVER HAPPEN for physical requirements; Women would have to meet the same requirements as men in any job with physical tasking.

And, everyone knew it was a lie. Including the people telling it, may they rot in hell.

Harold said...

Looking at takirks story, I'm going to post the following, which I copy and paste because I tell it so often:

Back in the early days of women being assigned shipboard, I heard a story about a CO who performed a little test. Had the female officers hand select 4 female sailors, and he picked 4 males from a hat. Had Zebra set throughout the ship (All watertight doors and hatches shut and latched), and had the two teams of 4 don OBA’s, and they were directed to take a P-250 pump from point a to point b. It’s not that the team of 4 hand selected females took longer; it’s that they never made it to point b.

The results were never put in writing. And the story goes he was told to never publish the experiment,, and other CO’s were ordered never to repeat it. Nothing in writing, of course. Could just be a sea story. But I don’t think so. Everyone on the waterfront knew of the experiment within a day of it being conducted. And no one was surprised about the results, or the fact it was never publicized.

JCC said...

Triangle man -

"...likelihood of injury during training..."

If in fact that were the sole justification, then he should have won by default, since he failed the test in the last day of training, and had by definition, successfully completed said training. The "physical fitness test" also quantifies the candidate's "initiative and perseverance required of a Special Agent." which should be the definition of corporate double-speak. Any other law enforcement agency would have to satisfy the government that the physical tests were directly tied to tasks encountered by the employee in day-to-day duties, else they be judged discriminatory. Unless of course the tests were rigged to favor an otherewise aggrieved class.

Like here.

Sayyid said...

"[E]qually fit men and women demonstrate their fitness differently."

Taking that statement as true, the immediate follow-up question I have is this: in what ways does the women's test require a more on-paper-demanding performance than the men's test?

And if there isn't one, are they really "equally fit"?

stlcdr said...

Those are the requirements.

Squealing that it's not fair demonstrates failure of the requirements.

gregq said...

"What do you think of these "gender-normed" standards?"

They're bullshit.

Something has fallen on your co-worker. Guess what, it's weight isn't "gender normed" to your sex.

Your co-worker has been shot, and needs to be dragged to safety. His weight isn't "gender normed" to yours. So I guess he's going to lie out there, get shot again, and die because you're too weak and useless to be able to carry him to safety.

"I have a dream, that some day my children will be judged" by their gender and race normed characteristics, not judged on their actual individual characteristics within an objective, non-sexist, non-racist, "administrative matrix".

Anthony said...

HMWSD?

How Many Would Scully Do?

raf said...

Why did he stop at 29? I assume so he could establish the most favorable fact set for his lawsuit. I also assume he collaborated with the FBI in a joint attempt to get a court to overturn the gender-norm approach to standards. After all, after they made him resign, they hired him as a civilian analyst. I suspect it was prearranged.