Author Topic: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"  (Read 43008 times)

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Offline The Dunnminator

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #50 on: April 19, 2009, 15:57:19 »
On a whole, I find this piece by Michael Coren rather naive.  He has chosen to write on Karine's death but has overlooked a vastly different aspect altogether.  He criticises our society for allowing women the freedoms to become Combat Soldiers and try to better the world as is the case with Karine.  He, however, fails to comment on the women of the world, the Karla Homolkas and others, who have over the centuries been equal to men in their cruelty to their fellow humans.  Michael Coren has written an idyllic piece, where the "fairer sex" is supposedly totally "innocent" and "nurturing"; and we all know that is a fantasy.

Excellent point, I spoke about this article with one of my friends who was really close to Karine. He comes from the same small village, we both went to school with her, he has the same age and he joined at the same time as her and knew her from his early childhood. What sickens him, and myself, the most about this article is the distinction the author made about her looks. If she wasn't good looking, would the idea of this article even came to his mind? Karine wasn't weak mentally and was perfectly able for combat, she did the same training as any men of her regiment and she decided to join in a combat arm because she loved this job and would have hated to do a desk job. Of course her death is tragic, but so are the deaths of every other member who died in this mission. How is her death any more tragic than one of a 40 year old man who leaves his children to grow without a father and leaves his wife to take care of the childrens alone? To me we are all equal as humans in life and death and while I am deeply saddened by her death, I think it is a great thing that in our society she had the opportunity to do what she really wanted in her life before dying. The last thing she would have wanted is her death to reopen this sexist debate.

Offline leroi

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #51 on: April 19, 2009, 16:36:04 »
Excellent point, I spoke about this article with one of my friends who was really close to Karine. He comes from the same small village, we both went to school with her, he has the same age and he joined at the same time as her and knew her from his early childhood. What sickens him, and myself, the most about this article is the distinction the author made about her looks. If she wasn't good looking, would the idea of this article even came to his mind? Karine wasn't weak mentally and was perfectly able for combat, she did the same training as any men of her regiment and she decided to join in a combat arm because she loved this job and would have hated to do a desk job. Of course her death is tragic, but so are the deaths of every other member who died in this mission. How is her death any more tragic than one of a 40 year old man who leaves his children to grow without a father and leaves his wife to take care of the childrens alone? To me we are all equal as humans in life and death and while I am deeply saddened by her death, I think it is a great thing that in our society she had the opportunity to do what she really wanted in her life before dying. The last thing she would have wanted is her death to reopen this sexist debate.

Yes, I was trying to make this point but you have done a better job. Let her death be dignified and honourable and let her rest in peace rightfully and equally alongside her brothers- and sisters-at-arms without further politicization of her death.

To raise her up above her peers is to diminish male efforts and by extension--overall team efforts, too.

You knew of her and confirmed what I would have suspected: Trooper Blais would not have wanted her death to be treated any differently than the other Fallen. :yellow:




« Last Edit: April 20, 2009, 11:44:58 by leroi »

Offline Aegis

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #52 on: April 19, 2009, 16:49:55 »
Very interesting discussion.

 I would submit that there are actually three elements in competition here.

 The first being that, in my opinion Mr. Coren mixed his apparent dislike for the Afghan mission with the examination of women in combat. This shows in the comment, "..increasingly futile and pointless war in Afghanistan..." which really has nothing to do with the rest of his column.

 Second is the uncomfortable feelings that we have when recognize that we do treat the death of a female soldier differently than the death of a male soldier. The initial column and this discussion, as are the countless discussions about this topic that take place are indicators that we do actually view the death of a female soldier differently.
 My opinion is that this bothers us so much because it goes against what we intellectually believe to be ethically correct. We ethically believe that women should have the same opportunities as men, even opportunities that may result in negative effects but that conflicts with the message our society gives us that women should be treated differently, with more respect and more reverence.
 How would the captain of sinking ship be viewed if he stated men first instead of women and children first?

 Lastly, and I think most unsavoury to our ethical selves is that there are in fact very real differences between men and women that, at least according to the 1992 Presidential Commission on the Assignment of Women in the Armed Forces may have a detrimental effect on their combat capability as compared to men.


From the same report:

Quote
"Lt Col. William Gregor, United States Army, testified before the Commission regarding a survey he conducted at an Army ROTC Advanced Summer Camp on 623 women and 3540 men."

Evidence Gregor presented to the Commission includes:

"(a) Using the standard Army Physical Fitness Test, he found that the upper quintile of women at West point achieved scores on the test equivalent to the bottom quintile of men.

"(c) Only 21 women out of the initial 623 (3.4%) achieved a score equal to the male mean score of 260.

"(d) On the push-up test, only seven percent of women can meet a score of 60, while 78 percent of men exceed it.

"(e) Adopting a male standard of fitness at West Point would mean 70 percent of the women he studied would be separated as failures at the end of their junior year, only three percent would be eligible for the Recondo badge, and not one would receive the Army Physical Fitness badge…."


 "The average female Army recruit is 4.8 inches shorter, 31.7 pounds lighter, has 37.4 fewer pounds of muscle, and 5.7 more pounds of fat than the average male recruit. She has only 55 percent of the upper-body strength and 72 percent of the lower-body strength."

 I tried to find a link to the report on line but couldn't, "Women in the Military" by Brian Mitchell is a good collected source. I must also admit to being to lazy to retype portions of the report from a hard copy and have instead copy and pasted from the internet.

 These very real differences between men and women, at a physical capability level make us uncomfortable because, again my opinion, it shows us that nature doesn't care about our ethical or moral beliefs that everyone should be equal, in truth we are not.
 But its our fight against nature, our refusal to accept the limitation of biology that makes us more than just animals. We as a society have determined that even if someone is not physiologically equal they will be treated as if they are. The question should be, how far does the right of equality extend to where it may potentially endanger someone else? Any military is not a group of individuals, it is a team, and as such its capability is a sum of its collected parts. If it is demonstrated, quantitatively, that some portion of the team for whatever reason reduces the overall capability where does that persons right to equality of treatment balance out with the needs of the team to be capable?
 As a short, uncoordinated person I lack the capabilities to be a world class basket ball player. Do I, in an effort of asserting my equality even when it can be demonstrated I am not equal have the right to demand the same treatment as a word class basketball player? To play on their teams, to compete in the biggest games, to contribute to the success and failure of that team? Or is their a point where the needs of the team, or in the case of a military a nation, superceded my desire, perhaps even my right to be treated equally?
 
 I hope that no one sees anything that I have written as an attack on women in the combat arms. My own viewpoint is that we are looking at a symptom and not a disease. The disease, again in my opinion, is different standards for acceptance. As LTC Gregor said, "Adopting a male standard of fitness...". Why two standards? This inherently creates doubt about capability. Why not just the military standard and everyone must meet it, no matter their gender? This would completely eliminate any discussion about capability. Sure, as per LTC Gregor's study 70% percent of the women would have failed the first year but the capabilities of those that succeeded could not be held in question because they had met the same standard. My belief is that in our efforts to provide equality to everyone over the past decades we may have actually undermined the achievements of those that are truly capable and created an artificial system that supplants finding your real limitations with a society that will instead reduce its standards in order to provide a false sense of equality. I personally see this in many more places than just the military.

 Aside from the quotations from the report these are my opinions and I apologize if I have presented them in a manner some may find offensive. My condolences to Karines family .
« Last Edit: April 19, 2009, 16:52:38 by Aegis »

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #53 on: April 19, 2009, 17:28:07 »
He, however, fails to comment on the women of the world, the Karla Homolkas and others, who have over the centuries been equal to men in their cruelty to their fellow humans.

I think the gender gap in violent crime is unequal:
http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/homicide/gender.htm



« Last Edit: April 19, 2009, 17:32:16 by mariomike »

Offline George Wallace

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #54 on: April 19, 2009, 17:44:53 »
I think the gender gap in violent crime is unequal:
http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/homicide/gender.htm

  I really don't think there is a gender gap.  This is not a numbers game.  Women are just as equal as men to commit violent crimes.  Percentages or numbers of women committing these crimes may differ, but that is of little consequence to the victims or survivors of violence.
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Offline CloudCover

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #55 on: April 19, 2009, 22:35:59 »
Given her trade and what she would have to subjected herself to in order to get on the very ground where she was killed, I have difficulty believing there was ever an equality issue remaining in her mind. I just wish that, if she had to go down in that miserable place, she could have taken a few of the enemy with her, like she was trained to do, and I suspect, probably would have done had she been given a fighting chance.  The people with the equality problem are the enemy- a thousand of them are not equal to or worth the life of such a fine Canadian soldier.   
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Offline koopa

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #56 on: April 19, 2009, 23:28:24 »
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Coren

His conservative views come from his religion. His religious beliefs is the problem here IMO. Look at his views on AIDs and abortions. Still in the 19th century

Offline Greymatters

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #57 on: April 20, 2009, 01:02:24 »
Very interesting discussion.

 I would submit that there are actually three elements in competition here.

If you are going to include one report, you should search and find others - you will find that the 'physical fitness test' measures only very few aspects of fitness and those are focused on strength and endurance.  They do not measure agility, flexibility, reaction speeds, etc. or hand-to-eye coordination, areas where women tend to excel better than men...

 

Offline Mathius71

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #58 on: April 20, 2009, 11:34:14 »
some people just need to step in to the 20th century.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2009, 11:41:36 by Mathius71 »
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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #59 on: April 20, 2009, 14:36:02 »
some people just need to step in to the 20th century.

  psst ....we're in the 21st Century now  ;)


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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #60 on: April 20, 2009, 15:02:12 »
psst ....we're in the 21st Century now  ;)

baby steps JM, baby steps
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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #61 on: April 20, 2009, 18:38:36 »
some people just need to step in to the 20th century.

I wish I could. I miss the '70's!

Offline Greymatters

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #62 on: April 20, 2009, 23:34:11 »
...and thus another topic of temporary interest begins its spiral towards the drain...

Offline Fishbone Jones

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #63 on: April 21, 2009, 02:01:11 »
I think I've waited long enough. The originator of the article, Michael Coren, was emailed and informed of this thread. He was asked to attend, and read, the posts here. To give his point of view, and to dispute, defend or deny any allegations.

He has, obviously, decided to hide behind his mantle of corporate ingnominity. His loss, and his professional stature.

This is the 'premiere' Canadian forum for the voice of the nation's soldier. If Mr. Coren cannot afford some minuscule time in his obviously, very, busy day to refute the views that he espoused while encapsulating his antiquated views on the Canadian soldier, I feel his printed articles are as worthless as the time he can afford to those he mocks. Mr. Coren is entitled to his views and opinions. However, to use the national press to espouse and try to advance his lone, personal agenda, is despicable and a abuse of the freedom of press.My  :2c:
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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #64 on: April 21, 2009, 12:36:05 »
I think I've waited long enough. The originator of the article, Michael Coren, was emailed and informed of this thread. He was asked to attend, and read, the posts here. To give his point of view, and to dispute, defend or deny any allegations.

He has, obviously, decided to hide behind his mantle of corporate ingnominity. His loss, and his professional stature.

This is the 'premiere' Canadian forum for the voice of the nation's soldier. If Mr. Coren cannot afford some minuscule time in his obviously, very, busy day to refute the views that he espoused while encapsulating his antiquated views on the Canadian soldier, I feel his printed articles are as worthless as the time he can afford to those he mocks. Mr. Coren is entitled to his views and opinions. However, to use the national press to espouse and try to advance his lone, personal agenda, is despicable and a abuse of the freedom of press.My  :2c:

Thank you, recceguy!
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Offline Tulach Ard

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #65 on: April 21, 2009, 15:50:46 »
Thank you, recceguy!

Yes! No kidding, awesome idea!  :nod: Too bad he didn't answer...=(
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Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #66 on: April 21, 2009, 20:31:17 »
Two posts:

Dr Dawg (see end):

Mixed bag: criminals, cops, STV and a soldier's death
http://drdawgsblawg.blogspot.com/2009/04/mixed-bag-criminals-cops-stv-and.html

Damian Brooks:

STFU, Coren
http://toyoufromfailinghands.blogspot.com/2009/04/stfu-coren.html

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Offline Carcharodon Carcharias

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #67 on: April 22, 2009, 03:47:58 »
Regarding this Coren bloke.

Just another journalist. I have never heard of him.

Just another article seeking publicity through controversy and sensationalism, chasing ratings for his own recognition or the rag he writes for. We see this all too often these days.

Overall a 1/10, or a fart in a prairie windstorm.

Todays newspaper is tomorrows fish and chips.

I've already forgotten who he was. That being said, I will NEVER forget the life lost of a young and inspiring Allied soldier, regardless of the gender of that person.

Tomorrow there will be yet another written article, yet written by someone else, with more controversy and sensationalism for the benifit of themselves or the rag they write for, thus taking the heat off this one.

And life rolls on.....

My 2 bob on this.

OWDU.

EDITed for spelling
« Last Edit: April 22, 2009, 03:53:59 by Overwatch Downunder »
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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #68 on: April 22, 2009, 11:14:55 »
Here here, recceguy!
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Offline Michael O'Leary

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #69 on: April 22, 2009, 11:23:43 »
Quote
Yes, yes, yes, I know it's fundamentally anti-Canadian to say this but I'd prefer to articulate the views of the silent majority than hide behind some modernist fetish that places more importance on the myth of absolute equality than the safety of a girl who should be laughing with college friends rather than fighting theocratic madmen.

Who is this person that claims to speak for the "silent majority"?  I've never articulated my opinion on abortion, does that automatically make him my spokesman on that issue, or any other?  This proclamation is simply self-aggrandizement, capitalizing on the assumption that the "silent majority" also won't stand up and tell him he's full of crap for claiming his opinions represent theirs.  Perhaps the majority is silent because many of them just don't care enough to speak out - they have no collective opinion, and it's pompous to claim they share anyone's en masse.

How disgustingly undemocratic, and "fundamentally anti-Canadian" by the way, to unilaterally claim to speak for the "silent majority", perhaps he'd like to vote for them too and just run the country as a personal dictatorship.

I am Canadian, and Michael Coren does not speak for me.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2009, 17:51:50 by Michael O'Leary »

Offline jmbest

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #70 on: April 22, 2009, 11:39:52 »
I find the comments on this blog entry: http://www.smalldeadanimals.com/archives/011250.html slightly more annoying than anything else.

Suddenly feel like we're back in 1950.  ::)
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Offline Greymatters

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #71 on: April 22, 2009, 12:27:28 »
Reading Coren's article was like hearing the footsteps of an ancient dinosaur - but judging by the responses of support the article has gained in some quarters, it is certain that there are a large number of other dinosaurs willing to join up and form a stampede...


Offline Hamish Seggie

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #72 on: April 22, 2009, 13:05:17 »
As for the goof who implied Tpr Blais was killed because she couldn't take the heat and they opened the gunners hatch for air I have some advice for him:

SHUT UP. YOU DON'T HAVE A CLUE OF WHAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT. That is one lame excuse, as I've seen men have a hard time with heat.
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Offline leroi

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #73 on: April 22, 2009, 14:08:35 »
Reading Coren's article was like hearing the footsteps of an ancient dinosaur - but judging by the responses of support the article has gained in some quarters, it is certain that there are a large number of other dinosaurs willing to join up and form a stampede...


 :'( Agreed Greymatters-it's a shame.

So, here we are in 2009, witnessing both the death of a soldier at the hands of an enemy considered regressive in their treatment of women and the dishonour of that same soldier by progressive-thinking citizens of her own country based on gender ...

To me, the issue is not gender, it's not youth, it's not beauty; it's not timing: it simply boils down to one atrocious fact: narrow-minded journalists and followers who refuse to look beyond their own prejudices to the higher aspirations of honouring a Canadian soldier in death by putting all "differences," gender, etc., aside.

As a mother, if there was ever a reason for me to talk my son out of joining the Canadian Forces, it would be this: you live in a country that might not stand behind you when you die in service to it. A country comprised of respected journalists and others who might even insult and dishonour you in death.

Well, it's been said before and I'll say it again, if Canadians can't stand behind their troops, then get in front of them; that includes Mr. Coren.

God bless Trooper Blais' family; to have to live through the hell of having a child pre-decease you followed by a continuing media-circus dishonouring the same would have tipped me right over the abyss into insanity--certifiable.

I will have that talk with my son today and remind him that he lives in a backward-thinking, regressive country that may--depending on political agendas, moral biases and persistent, deep-seated evolutionary, ingrained learning that can't be un-learned--dishonour you in death. 

God bless Trooper Blais, the wounded, the Regiment, the family and friends. May she rest in dignity, honour and peace.:'(

Thank you recceguy. I have snail-mailed a letter to The Sun.

« Last Edit: April 22, 2009, 15:20:54 by leroi »

Offline Michael O'Leary

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Re: Michael Coren: "Caring for Karine"
« Reply #74 on: April 22, 2009, 17:52:05 »
Regarding: Post #69 on: Today at 11:23:43  ::)
Just for the record, that was Michael Coren quoted, not me!
My sister has been in the Reg Force nearly 32 years. 
I would never hear the end of it if she thought those words were mine!
Thank-you.  :)

Fixed.